ROA painted three walls in Townsville, North Queensland, Australia, early last month, but all of the usual street art media have completely missed it. Now that begs the obvious existential question in this Internet age of street art: If no blogs report it then were the walls actually painted?
It looks like this Belgian muralist has once again done his research on the local animals. ROA almost always paints animal species that are native to the country or city where the wall is located for greater engagement with the community. In this case he has chosen a goanna holding his own tail as a whip, a turtle sitting atop a crocodile, and a sugar glider chained to a faucet. Is the goanna a reference to legends of how it beat people by using its tail as a whip? Is the turtle and crocodile an aboriginal totemic symbol? Is the sugar glider a commentary on illegal pet trade?
The walls were commissioned by Townville’s city council as part of an initiative to guide the development of street art in the city. I’m glad to see small cities like this investing in street artists’ livelihood and hopefully it will soon trickle down even to artists all over the world that aren’t as famous or popular as Roa.
Check the jump for more pictures gathered from around the web.
ROA street art Giant Goanna, Townsville Australia pic.twitter.com/4svzQCVHdy
— Regan Tamanui (@regan99) June 29, 2015
Here’s an old, but cool nonetheless, video from MOCA with commentary from ROA read by a narrator.