THE SECOND installment of an ongoing street art project in Pill has seen a row of disused garages transformed into a celebration of a once bustling cattle market in the area.
The piece is part of the ‘Art in Pill’ project, which is the brainchild of Barnabas Arts House owner Jan Martin and was created by local artists Anthony Smith, Rob Carlton, Alex Arnell and James Annandale with the intent to inject greater interest and pride in the region.
Ms. Martin kicked off the project with a stunning mural, Home is where the art isat Barnabas Arts House in March.
The project comes at a time of real growth for Newport’s street art scene, which has seen murals popping up in various locations around town.
Ms Martin, who has been a dominant figure in the Newport art scene for more than 40 years, said she was delighted with the responses the works have received so far.
“I would say our first play, Home is where the art iswas a bit of a book cover for people to understand the types of styles we were going to incorporate,” Ms. Martin told the Argus.
“The response has been incredibly positive to this piece – one of my favorite comments was from a girl who asked her dad if she could go see it!
Inspired by the impact of street-art in nearby towns, Ms. Martin came up with the idea a few years ago.
“For us, it’s about trying to make a mark – it’s about showing that it’s about claiming something,” Ms Martin added.
“What we do is ‘considered art’, meaning it’s images that have relevance to their position.”
The nine disused garages, located a stone’s throw from the Asda supermarket, belong to Newport City Council who authorized Ms. Martin to use them.
Feedback from passers-by has been overwhelmingly positive.
“It’s great because they’re on the site of the old cattle market,” she says.
“We really wanted to create a sort of nod to what it was – but tell the story in a more lively and modern way.
“The people of Pill really miss the cattle market. It’s something that really unified the region.
With more artwork expected in Pill in the coming weeks, Ms Martin hopes Newport’s driven street art scene will lead to greater things.
“I can see an artistic trail forming in Newport because there’s so much going on here right now,” she said.
“Maybe even a book!” I hope we can also involve schools.
“It would be nice to get the kids to visit the site and have them write a few short lines about how they feel – maybe we could make it a contest?
“But the bottom line is that we want the kids to work with these amazing artists that we have here in Newport.”