After spending the cooler months hiking Perth's amazing trails we decided to opt for an urban "hike" discovering urban art and parks in Armadale. We parked at the Visitor Information Centre, where you can pick up a handy pocket sized map of the Rediscover Urban Art Trail. You can also download the art trail map in PDF form at: https://www.perthhillsarmadale.com.au/sites/default/files/assets/ReDiscover_Armadale_Map.pdf
The first mural as we headed west along Jull Street was the pastel shades of Andrew Frazer's mural covering the side wall of Domino's Pizza. From here we crossed Armadale Road following the path around the southern edge of Sanctuary Lake then taking the underpass under Albany Highway to Lions Park. The underpass was a bit dark and smelly so we would recommend entering this park from the other direction. Lions Park had few features other than some mature trees, some of which feature on the Armadale Heritage Tree Trail, and a small bike course play area.
Returning back through the underpass we spotted some art on a water tank on Albany Highway before taking the path around the northern side of Sanctuary Lake. This mural has since been reinvigorated into a stunning wildlife mural - sorry no pictures (yet). The lake is fully fenced and surrounded by lush green foliage with views through the trees to the central island bird habitat. It is a short but pleasant walk around the lake. If you continue walking west along Armadale Road you will come across the Andrew Kay sculpture which acknowledges the contribution of Italian settlers to the area. Take a moment to read the stories on the plaques surrounding the memorial.
This is the only art work on this side so it was back across Armadale Road and into Minnawarra Park, a beautiful green space with lakes, bridges, mature trees, landscaped gardens, a boardwalk and meandering pathways. Minnawarra Park frequently hosts large local community events and is home to the Minnawarra Historic Precinct.
Cross Orchard Avenue into Memorial Park, a beautifully landscaped park with a train based playground, complete with an original, restored railway signal, ticket office and railway track: perfect for imaginary play. There is a variety of other play equipment scattered under the mature shade trees. You can also enjoy the free, local outdoor, drop in playgroup, Play in the Park here during some school terms. Through the trees you will spot the massive Matt Adnate mural on the back of the shopping centre wall - a highlight of the art trail and pictured at the top of this blog. Several trees in this park are part of the Armadale Heritage Tree Trail and we could not help but wonder at the size of the Camphor Laurel. The park is also home to colourful ribbon bar sculptures which frame the heritage listed Monument. Each ribbon bar contains text and images reflecting various theatres of war.
From Memorial Park continue west along Jull Street where you will find a portrait of a girl by Rone on the side of Westpac. Here you will also find the Owen Davies sculpture of a swagman. The 1890s swagman represents the pioneers and tradespeople that contributed to the growth of Armadale. The Y-shaped junction that he draws in the sand highlights the two highways and resembles the design of the Armadale Council crest. He sits next to the waterwheel signifying the importance of the creeks and dams in the area. The seats around the sculpture invite people to rest in a subtle tribute to the local brick and manufacturing industries.
We failed to find the art by Creed on Third Street but continued on down the Mall to see Sharyn Egan's art on the side of the Department of Fire and Services opposite the Railway Station, alongside the Guardian Sculpture by Alister Yiap.
Retracing our steps along the mall we saw a few more art works not described on the trail. We found the large work by Tahnee Kelland in the laneway at 188 Jull Street and further along the Lisa King mural on the Cash Converters wall. A small detour to Prospect Road led us to the Bradley Kickett mural on the wall of the Armadale Police Station.
Passing a pretty little park on Hughes Road we returned to the car at the Visitors Centre, where there is a public toilet. If you have time you can look through the Bert Tyler Vintage Machinery Museum housed within the Visitor Centre.
The area we walked around skirts the main CBD area of Armadale, with Jull Street Mall being a shopping precinct surrounded by large malls either side Wandering through the parks and following the art trail you are almost oblivious to the hustle and bustle of the large regional shopping facilities around you. Jull Street Mall was quiet on a Sunday but would be more vibrant on a weekday.
Wandering around exploring the combination of Parks and Art took us about an hour.
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In the spirit of reconciliation Out and About- Family Nature Connection acknowledges the traditional owners of the Wadjak boodjar (Perth land) and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and emerging and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.