BreakAway Art has designed and painted evocative murals in over 150 schools nationally and with NGOs such as the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) and job service providers (NORTEC and EnviTe). WA based Wirrpanda Foundation regularly flies Sam into remote communities to deliver motivational programs and to paint murals. Sam also welcomes private commissions.
The vivid, eye-catching scenes take cheerless spaces and turn them into colourful learning panoramas that boost knowledge of and pride in culture, ecology and humanity. The creative thinking process is inclusive of all stakeholders and participants and often involves some of society’s most disadvantaged people in their creation. The experience bridges cultural gaps and brings a degree of healing.
Project examples include the RFDS commissioned program Clean Slate in Aurukun, Cape York that turned defaced airport buildings into welcoming scenes of totem birds in country, working alongside patients of the Wellbeing Centre. Also, NORTEC/Tweed Shire Council’s Treasures of the Tweed levee wall mural working alongside long-term unemployed clients of NORTEC.
The murals are usually completed in a few days and their long-lasting value is priceless. Schools claim that behaviour and attendance improves and that the murals in remote communities create up-lifting environments that are cared for by the community because of the inclusive nature of the art projects. Sam is sponsored by ecolour paints. They are exterior quality water based paints that are low VOC and safe to handle and breathe.
You make me think of Lluís Domènech i Montaner’s hospital in Barcelona. The philosophy is beauty and nature, the idea and concept that being in a beautiful place helps us to heal. I remember being there and carrying away a sense of how right it is. The same with school spaces; beauty and nature must help the education experience.
Sue McBurnie, via Facebook, July 2020