The gentrification of Melbourne's suburbs might upset long-term residents, but it is also providing a living canvas for artists.
RMIT University alumnus and Art in Public Space lecturer Julie Shiels is one of those taking advantage of the inner city's changing nature.
Over the years she has transformed hundreds of objects abandoned on local streets with stencils of quotations and truisms from homeless people, writers, politicians, abandoned websites or artists, and occasionally her own words.
This month, Ms Shiels will have a new exhibition and launch her third book, both called As Long As It Lasts at St Kilda Town Hall Art Gallery.
Ms Shiel transforms objects abandoned on local streets with stencils of quotations and truisms.
The St Kilda artist said the stencilled mattresses, couches, chairs and televisions become temporary public artworks and stay on the street until somebody takes them away.
"Usually the artwork is scooped up by council workers, mashed up in a garbage compactor and taken to the tip," she said.
"Occasionally an opportunistic collector rescues them and gives them a third life.
"Sometimes they disappear for a while, only to reappear in other location.
"Whatever their fate, they animate urban space."
The work can be seen in a new book and exhibition at St Kilda Town Hall Art Gallery.
The work has been a collective enterprise.
"Friends and acquaintances have often taken the initiative by alerting me to good looking junk, to lovely fabric on mattresses, to well-positioned lounge suites," Ms Shiels said.
"They have suggested texts for stencilling or commented on the blog where I upload my photos and document casual conversations that I have had in street while making the work.
"The occasional anecdotes scattered throughout this book offers a sample of these interactions."
Ms Shiels completed her Masters of Art at RMIT in 2006 and is currently undertaking a PhD at the Victorian College of the Arts.
She is the recipient of Melbourne University's Stella Mary Langford Post Graduate Scholarship.
Heide Museum of Modern Art Director Jason Smith will launch As Long As It Lasts, an exhibition and book Julie Shiels at 6.30pm on Wednesday, 23 April at St Kilda Town Hall Art Gallery.
The exhibition features an installation and some of the photographs appearing in the book.
The project is supported by a City of Port Phillip Cultural Development Grant.
Ms Shiels' work has been acquired by public collections including National Gallery of Australia, State Library of New South Wales, State Library of Victoria, Baillieu Library, Australian Embassy, Vietnam, City of Banyule and Port Phillip Art Collections and many private collections.
The exhibition is on from 23 April - 16 May at St Kilda Town Hall Art Gallery.
The book is available from Readings and all good book shops. Order it online.
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