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Gosnells, Murals and the Agonis.

Road Trip Day 21: 12th June 2007

My Mum wanted to show me around the town centre of Gosnells (the main suburb of Perth that I grew up in) so Rose and I spent the day with her, walking around the shopping precinct.

I was last here in 2004. Back then there was a lot of development work getting under way. Three years later much of the work has been finished for some time.

There is a brand new railway/bus station right in the middle of town - much less out of the way than the old platform. One of the old shopping complexes, where we used to buy groceries, looks nothing like it used to. It's been renovated to the point where you wouldn't even know that the underlying base structure was built more than forty years ago. You'd swear the whole thing was built within the last couple of years. The changes are a real improvement too.

The centre piece of the town is the 'Agonis' centre. This was being built in 2003. Now it is open and is home to the 'Knowledge Centre' (library to us less posh types), a very affordable but trendy cafe, hall space to hire, a history of Gosnells interpretive centre and a very striking tower clock.

Surrounding the Agonis is a massively upgraded town square (where art markets are held in the summer) as well as highly cared for park lands that were just a step above bushland when I left seven years ago. There's even a 'tree top walk' that was officially opened a few months ago but strangely remains closed whilst they finish it.

Gosnells has also recognised the value of public art in enhancing the city environment. There are several specially commissioned sculptures that aren't some abstract notion that no one understands. Instead they represent links to themes that represent Gosnells either past, present or future. The sculpture you see in my photo (right) is a spinners spool. Although I'm not entirely sure of how this links to Gosnells I can say it does make for a visually interesting piece of public art.

Speaking of Art, one thing I happened to notice was still there, after seven years, is this mural at 'Pages Park'. Murals tend to have a short life span due to graffiti bandits but I noticed that this mural has been continually touched up to cover any graffiti damage.

You might wonder why I care about this mural until you look at the bigger version of the photo and notice that it was designed and painted by me with assistance from Rose. I've painted a few public murals around Gosnells when I lived there. As far as I know this is the only one that has survived time. Not particularly because it's great but because it links Pages Park to the history of the people who used to live at that very spot.

The Pages Park Mural links me to Gosnells through my art. I kind of like that.

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