Local artists paint new art murals at Katoomba Public School

Katoomba Public School is the home to new murals by local artists Amy Bell, Elaine Butler, Isaac Sherring-Tito, Eloise Short and Freedom Wilson.

The new artwork comes after the school secured funding from the Community Building Partnership Grant in 2019.

Elaine Butler's parrot mural. Photo provided.

Elaine Butler's parrot mural. Photo provided.

"We wanted to support as many local artists as possible so selected five different local artists to paint the murals around the school," said Cate Paterson, the school's Community Liaison Officer. "Three of the five artists have already completed their pieces and they are such a wonderful addition to the school."

Many buildings have been given a makeover, but the students are particularly excited by the bathrooms, which were painted by Freedom.

"Of particular note is Freedom Wilson's work in the school toilets - gorgeous artwork that is a true gift to the students as only the children see it; it's just for them," said Ms Paterson. "It has transformed drab, sad looking standard school toilet blocks into places of beauty."

Freedom Wilson's butterfly mural in the bathroom. Photo provided.

Freedom Wilson's butterfly mural in the bathroom. Photo provided.

The aim of redecorating the bathrooms was to transform it into a safe, enjoyable space.

"The bathroom is a place where some kids go when they're feeling a bit sad," said Freedom. "The idea was the make them a really happy place. I did a survey to find out what their happy places are and their responses were fascinating."

Children in different grades requested different themes on their bathrooms, from waterfalls and treetops to butterflies and lizards. It was important for the children to be involved in every step of the process, with some older children picking up the paintbrush to help out.

The collaboration between local artists and the school not only gave the children a colourful new environment but also supported the artists' businesses.

"It was really good because it gave us something to fall back on when COVID-19 was messing with our businesses."