Refugee talents in Perfect Match

THE Inner West has a new public artwork, thanks to the Perfect Match Street Art program.

The artwork, ‘The Island’, is on Addison Road, Marrickville, and is a unique collaboration between Fintan Magee and Settlement Services International (SSI)’s Ignite Small Business Start-ups initiative. The artwork highlights the talents and contributions of refugee communities culturally and economically to the Inner West.
In the mural, refugees Shohrat Tursun (musician) and Dilnigar Alim (dancer), surrounded by pieces of traditional dress, are pictured as if sitting on an island.
The work speaks of diaspora, dislocation and the eternal search for home.
Magee is known for his murals throughout Australia and the world and the Inner West has at least six examples.
Perfect Match brings together property owners who offer their walls as canvases to artists who have ideas for public art.
In this case, property owner Fotini Manikakis said she tired of having her “hi-vis wall barraged with tagging and graffiti bombing”.
She added that she was “feeling angry about the burgeoning wave of racial intolerance in Australia today. I was keen for the work to speak to Marrickville as a culturally diverse area with a strong migration history and spirit of inclusiveness”.
Magee mentored and was assisted by two younger refugees, artists Raneen Shamon and Emmanuel Asante, to create the work.