Stop 4 - Bogan Mural (Leicester Street)

Our penultimate stop is a collaboration mural between Adnate, Smug and Sofles, some of the leading names in Australian street art (LOCATION). Whilst Sofles’ abstract design and Adnate’s veiled face (just one in a series located around the Fitzroy area) are both incredible, it is Smug’s depiction of a typical Aussie ‘bogan’ that has garnered the most attention. Can you guess why?

What was controversial was the brand placement in Smug’s image, with a complaint made to local council that the beer cans may promote Melbourne Bitter (again take note of Smug’s placement of his, Adnate’s and Sofles’ names on the cans!). However, I believe that the bogan, in conjunction with the conceptual piece and the veiled, non-white woman may be a social commentary by the three artists of the divide between portions of a backwards thinking Anglo society and those who may feel ignored or out of place. Do you think they did this intentionally or do the three pieces sit individually on the same wall?

Furthermore, is the controversy not the depiction of Australian’s as ‘bogans’? Or does the public see Smug’s warped hyperrealism as artistic expression? What do you think?

This mural was also covered with a protective coating, as with Easey Street, which means graffiti writers cannot readily cap it. Therefore this is now part of the urban landscape, whether the council and local residents are pleased or not. I love the mural in its entirety, how about you?