The demolition of one of Melbourne’s most valuable hidden artworks commenced today, however you wouldn’t have seen the artist trying to stop it from happening
Rone, a Collingwood-based artist completed his latest works inside the machine rooms of the old Alphington Paper Mills on Heidelberg Road, which was scheduled for demolition to make way for one of Australia’s largest urban renewal mini-suburbs, YarraBend.
Despite the move to ultimately destroy these valuable ‘canvases’, the scheduled demolition was not a case of beauty being destroyed in the name of industry.
The Age said Rone’s work is ‘ephemeral art’.
“It burns brightly for a short time, in this a case a very short time, less than a week, then disappears…these majestic images will never be seen again, not in the wild.”
Rone told The Age it was never intended to be public, instead opting for a flip in the way a traditional artist might think.
As an avid art collector, Glenvill CEO and owner of the YarraBend development Len Warson engaged Rone at YarraBend to organise proper documentation and records of the artwork prior to demolition work.
“One of our key pillars for YarraBend is The Arts, so to start our journey with these works by Rone is very exciting,” Mr Warson said.
The project marks the beginning of a series of artistic collaborations for the site.
The work was an extension of Rone’s “Empty” series which was unveiled last year and investigates the themes of beauty and decay.
Prior to demolition, Rone’s secret “Empty” murals were photographed and now only exist in a photographic print series which will be available for sale.
The concept of documenting contemporary street art prior to its imminent removal is a move intended to take the genre to a new level. The artistic evolution has been recognised by the arts community via the addition of Rone’s “Empty” series being placed in the NGVs permanent collection.
Yarrabend is planned to become one of Melbourne’s most significant urban renewal residential developments – second only in size to Fisherman’s Bend. Developer Glenvill’s intention is to create an urban renewal project of international standard, equal or superior to New York’s Meat Packing District and London’s Canary Wharf.
It was designed to become the world’s most liveable suburb.
Rone is best known for his large scale portraits of beautiful women commissioned throughout the world from New York and Paris to Port Villa and Taipei.