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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Reko Rennie Has Transformed a Melbourne Basketball Court Into a Colourful Public Art Installation

The basketball court will be open for a limited time and is currently available for public bookings.
By Ben Hansen
March 19, 2021
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By Ben Hansen
March 19, 2021
  shares

Reko Rennie is no stranger to public art. The renowned Indigenous Australian artist has created some of the country's most bold and bright public displays over the last decade, including Darlinghurst's  Always Was, Always Will Be building, Barangaroo's huge pink and blue mural and works in the West Side Place public gallery. Rennie's latest work is the transformation of a public basketball court in Melbourne's inner city.

Located on Boon Wurrung and Wurundjeri land, at 90 Queens Bridge Street, South Bank, Underpark functions both as a pink, blue and green-hued piece of street art and as a basketball court, open to the public. The court is available to be booked for one-hour, half-court sessions between 6am and 8pm every day, but there are no bookings before midday on Saturdays and Sundays when the court is open to all to encourage pickup games of community basketball.

If basketball isn't your forte, you can head down to check out the colour-filled artwork or sit on the bleachers and watch more skilful individuals take to the court.

Rennie's artwork, titled OA_Hardcourt, is an extension of his Visible Invisible series, an installation and exhibition comprising of bold neon colours and camouflage patterns. According to Rennie, the camouflage "celebrates our visible cultural identity – where in the past camouflage has been used to conceal, here it proudly reveals a strong and vibrant cultural history".

The artwork was commissioned by property developer Time & Place in conjunction with fellow developer Hickory. Time & Place is hoping the artwork and public space will provide a starting point for further development of the neighbourhood surrounding the basketball court.

Time & Place director Tim Price said the company hopes "the use of this space will open up a broader placemaking conversation with the City of Melbourne about the future use of the neighbouring Kings Way Undercroft".

The court will be active for a limited time before Time & Place begins development on the site in mid-2021, so if you'd like to check it out or book it in for a game of Horse, now's the time.

Underpark and the OA_Hardcourt art installation is located at 90 Queens Bridge Street, Southbank. Bookings are available via Underpark.

Published on March 19, 2021 by Ben Hansen

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