Whatever happened to Aro St?

Ah. Well, that explains what was up with Real Groovy, doesn’t it?

The council has been quite strict about targeting graffiti in Aro St for the past year, but they seem to have slacked off recently, and as a result it’s becoming grotty again. Even some of the unauthorised-but-pretty mural art put up last year has been tagged, which is bad form. The Noddy-houses which introduced low-quality high-density apartments to the area already look appalling, and parts of the street (which traditionally has an active community spirit) now give off an air of can’t-be-buggeredness.

The owners of some bombarded private walls have apparently given up on maintenance, either through lack of time and resources or because they figure it’s on the other side of the wall, so why should they care? It’s what happens to an area when you combine boredom, mental illness and cheap automobile spray paint. I’m leaving “creativity'” off that list, because the tagging is consistently amateurish and ugly.

The artist team bmd haven’t been around recently, but I found one of their beautiful cartoon murals down an alleyway off Webb St. It’s a very narrow space, so it’s almost impossible to photograph. Nice to see that some of their work survives, they haven’t exactly inspired a renaissance of attractive public art.


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