Jill Meagher – Reclaim the Night Tribute

Jill-Meagher-tributeBack on October 12, 2012, an unknown street artist plied the walls of Hosier Lane in Melbourne, with heartfelt feelings towards the unfortunate and senseless killing of a young 29 year-old Irish woman, living in Melbourne and working for the Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC) television network. It brought the city to a halt and on the night that the street artist left his/her message, thousands joined the ‘Reclaim the Night’ march in Jill’s honour.

Reclaim-the-NightAs published by newspaper Herald-Sun reporters, a 20m mural, created by a mystery street artist, appeared along a wall in Hosier Lane, stating: “Rest in Peace Jill“. It is believed the artist painted the tribute between midday and 7pm on the day that thousands of mourners gathered in Brunswick to march in honour of Ms Meagher. At the time, The City of Melbourne who looks after the street art in Hosier Lane, told the Herald Sun it had commenced talks with the street art community to devise “the best way to manage this piece” – in other words try to preserve its presence. However, they did recognise that it was was unlikely the entire piece would remain plastered along the laneway, despite Twitter users calling for the work to be shielded behind Perspex to ensure it was maintained as a lasting memorial.

Sadly, the mural did not last long and was painted over within weeks. I mention this now as the Committal Hearing for the accused is currently being heard. All I can say is, may there be adequate justice in this world to help prevent further unlawful and unnecessary evil, predatory crime against all innocent life.

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2 Responses to Jill Meagher – Reclaim the Night Tribute

  1. Mark says:

    Hi MaryAnn,

    I don’t mean to be-little the horrible events around Jill but I would like to clarify a point regarding the mural in question.
    The artist, who was travelling from Europe, was a novice and sadly he destroyed the recent work of 2 or 3 of the worlds most respected painters (amongst other in that space) with a very low quality piece of work which he hoped to gain recognition from.
    The people who painted over his tribute were a group of women, active participants in the Reclaim the Night activities from Jill’s community, and who were deeply offended that the travelling painter destroyed all the high quality work in the lane and didn’t seek to collaboarte with the local community who could have produced a mural to a much higher level (It is a custom in graffiti culture to not paint over an artist who is better than yourself).
    The media of course, provided no context when reporting on the matter.

    I hope justice is served and sorry if my explanation regarding the mural sounds offensive. I hope this provides some information as to why the Lettering was not preserved.

    thank you – Mark

    • maryannadair says:

      Hi Mark
      Thank you very much for your explanation. It just goes to show that there is often ‘two sides’ to every story and this is very much the case. I absolutely understand the angst or frustration of seeing the work of a lesser artist intentionally “going over” the run of another’s work by slashing or dissing and I know in some circles these people are/were known as toy’s. (Not sure if that is still the case).

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