An RMIT student is bringing out the artist in us all through a public art project inspiring the creative journeys of commuters.
On any given weekday, the carriages of V/Line trains are transformed into incubators of creativity as Master of Arts (Art in Public Space) student Julie Andrews encourages passengers to draw their own experience of the journey.
Ms Andrews' project Art in Transit inspires those making the commute from Melbourne to Bendigo to share in the art making experience in an unconventional setting.
Participants are asked to sketch their view from out the window onto large blank post cards which are traded at the end of the journey as a memento for the trip.
The works produced by passengers from all walks of life have so far been exhibited from Docklands to Bendigo Railway Station, with a residency at RMIT's Spiritual Centre starting today.
RMIT students are invited to express their thoughts, daydreams and contemplations from their daily commute as part of the exhibition, which closes on Thursday, 7 August, at 12:30pm.
All drawings will be offered as anonymous gifts from one traveller to another at the closing event.
Ms Andrews said the project intended to provide commuters with an impromptu encounter with art in a safe and friendly setting.
"Art in Transit endeavours to break down barriers around ideas of 'one right way' and notions about how things 'ought' to look or be," she said.
"My role is to encourage and share the positive aspects of art practice while highlighting the subjective nature of interpretations and judgements of what our passage through life should look like."
Inspired by a life in transit, Ms Andrews has always enjoyed looking at the world through the passing view of a train window.
"Over the years commuting from one city to another has provided me with a creative space in which to think deeply, to daydream and explore imaginative inner journeys that inform my art practise," she said.
Ms Andrews credits the Master of Arts (Art in Public Space) for broadening her thinking about art practice and what art can do.
"I have found that there is a genuine cross-disciplinary approach to the course, which has encouraged me to explore more fully how the application of my art practice might be used to socially engage the public in contemporary issues."
Ms Andrews' work will also be on show at a digital screen exhibition at the Bendigo Regional Library in September.
As an exploration of the ways in which art can make a difference, she hopes the project will act as a whisper to the unconscious of possibilities otherwise unnoticed.
"I often hear conversations start up as I move around the carriage; people share their stories, and an appreciation of having connected with someone who they may have travelled with for years but with whom they have never had a conversation," she said.
"Many have common ground and shared interests, unknown before the project disrupted the space."
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