Recently we toured the Silo Art Trail.
The Silo Art Trail is Australia’s largest outdoor gallery. The trail stretches over 200 kilometres, linking Brim with neighbouring towns Lascelles, Patchewollock, Rosebery, Rupanyup and Sheep Hills.
Providing an insight into the true spirit of the Wimmera Mallee, the trail recognises and celebrates the region’s people through a series of large-scale mural portraits painted onto grain silos, many of which date back to the 1930s.
The project saw a team of renowned artists from Australia and across the world visit the region, meet the locals and transform each grain silo into an epic work of art; each one telling a unique story about the host town.
The Silo Art Trail was conceived in 2016 after the success of the first silo artwork in Brim. What started as a small community project by the Brim Active Community Group, GrainCorp, Juddy Roller and artist, Guido van Helten resulted in widespread international media attention and an influx of visitors to the region and the idea for a trail was born.
The Silo Art Trail was created as a partnership between Yarriambiack Shire Council, international street art agency Juddy Roller, Victorian Government, Australian Government and GrainCorp, who donated the silos as canvases for the artists’ work.
The four images in this post are located at Brim.
Guido van Helten’s iconic Brim mural was the first silo artwork to appear in Victoria, and soon infused the town’s community with newfound energy and optimism. After gaining widespread local and international attention, Brim’s silo art success shone a spotlight on the Wimmera Mallee region and inspired the establishment of the Silo Art Trail.
Completed in early 2016, with limited financial resources, van Helten’s mural depicts an anonymous, multi-generational quartet of female and male farmers. Rendered across these four 1939-built GrainCorp silos, van Helten’s subjects bear expressions that exemplify the strength and resilience of the local farming community.
By rendering the figures as both central and peripheral, present and absent, the work explores shifting notions of community identity at a time when rural populations face both immense economic pressure and the tangible consequences of climate change.
Using the documentary style of humanist street photography as studies, the translucent aerosol technique conjures a sense of ghostliness. The resulting characters are profoundly connected to their chosen place, infusing the landscape with a comforting, familiar presence.