Evolving art at the East End skate bowl

Skate bowl art: Some of Phil Jones work on the project, which will be completed in a few weeks.
Skate bowl art: Some of Phil Jones work on the project, which will be completed in a few weeks.

Work on the East End skate bowl mural will be finished in the next few weeks according to New Plymouth artist Phil Jones.

The mural was supposed to have been completed in February but has been delayed by bad weather and a series of complications with funding.

Mr Jones who has been working alongside the council on the development of the skate bowl since day one says the mural is now well under way.

He says the work, which covers three quarters of the bowl, is "a reflection of skateboarders culture and who they are".

"It's bright and colourful. It's a skateboarders place," he says.

Mr Jones says the artwork is made up of some contemporary pieces and some classic, iconic skate imagery.

Some of the works decorating the bowl include a goblin riding an old school skateboard, a vulture and "flowers - tattoo style".

Mr Jones has been working alongside other well-known local graffiti artists to get the job done, but is always on the look out for an extra pair of hands.

"Anyone who has an interest in it can get involved," he says.

He has run a number of graffiti workshops for local younger artists where he aims to take their work to new levels and to give them a sense of direction.

"I try to inspire them and nurture what they've got.

Graffiti art is an area where you can actually make some decent money," he says.

Mr Jones has painted at WOMAD (the World of Music, Arts and Dance) and now sells his canvases and custom paintings for up to $1,000.

New Plymouth District Council community relations officer Jayne Beer says the delay in getting the mural done is mainly due to the difficulties the group had with obtaining funding over the holiday period.

However she says the mural is now very close to being completed.

"The project is evolving all the time. That's what graffiti art is all about," she says.

"I'm not a skateboarder or a skateboarder's mum, but some of the work that's down there is brilliant."

  • BRESCIA MASCHERETTI is a AUT Journalism Student