by bacblogarts

Image: Courtesy of Rosalind Stanley, Blacktown Arts and Karina Kushnir.

Smart Bins

Blacktown City Council in collaboration with Blacktown Arts has completed the ‘Smart Bins’ project by installing 18 new litter bins throughout the Blacktown LGA.

Several new smart waste bins have been installed throughout Blacktown City local government area in order to aesthetically enrich the location and neighbourhood amenity. Each smart bin has been wrapped using artists designs. Through an online platform, these smart waste bins are capable of monitoring waste levels to optimise waste collection schedules.

The project is fully funded by Council’s Civil Maintenance section. The artistic process for selecting the art works, designs, approvals and artist  licensing agreements, are managed by the Arts and Cultural Development section, Blacktown Arts.

Key features of the smart bins include:

  • can compact 6x more rubbish than a regular 240L bin
  • technology allows for alerts to notify staff if the bins are full, faulty or have hazardous items inside eg glass, cigarettes etc
  • bins require less servicing
  • each bin features a different artists artwork around Blacktown LGA
  • powered by solar.

Smart Bin Locations and artists

Dharug Ngurra – Dharug Country
Location: The Leo Kelly Blacktown Arts Centre
Artist: Leanne Watson/Redpath

Artist bio: Leanne is a Darug woman commonly known in the Aboriginal community as Mulgo meaning Black Swan and is the daughter of Aunty Edna Watson and Uncle Allan Watson.

She started painting at a young age, taught by her mother Aunty Edna Watson and her brother Bundeluk Watson, and is now an accomplished artist, illustrator and writer.
Cooee Mittigar won the prime minister children’s literacy award in 2020, a very proud moment in Leanne’s life to have a Darug language book recognised nationwide.

Dharug mudgin
Location: Civic Centre
Artist: Aunty Edna Watson

Artist bio: Aunty Edna is a Dharug elder who has spent many years working in the community, she was one of the first Dharug people to teach Dharug culture and language in community and schools in Western Sydney.
Aunty Edna is an accomplished artist with deep connections to this place, her love of Dharug country and people has seen her walk an amazing path.

Connection to Country
Location: Bowman Hall
Artists: Uncle Danny Eastwood and JamesEastwood with Chifley College Dunheved Campus Students, Courtesy Solid Ground

Artists bio: Uncle Danny Eastwood is local to Blacktown and a proud Ngemba elder and prolific artist practicing as a painter, ceramicist and cartoonist for over four decades. His work features First Nations cultural stories, political commentary and environment elements.

James Eastwood is the son of Uncle Danny who works alongside his father on art projects. He is mentored and trained by his father, a local artist, muralist, and painter. The Solid Ground is a partnership between Blacktown Arts and Carriageworks established in 2015. Solid Ground provides education, training and employment pathways for Indigenous Australian youth in Blacktown and Inner-City areas. Students at Chifley College Dunheved Campus created this art work under the mentorship and leadership of Uncle Danny Eastwood, and his son James Eastwood.

Sharing Stories
Location: Former Blacktown Public School
Artist: Karen Maber

Description of the work on smart bin: Sharing Stories – Sharing stories is our way of sharing knowledge; our stories of history, science, medicine and morals.

Artist bio: Karen Maber is a Cabrogal woman belonging to the Dharug/Darug Nation. She was born and raised on the lands and waterways of her Dharug and Dharawal ancestors. Her artwork explores relationships between people, place, emotions & spirituality.

Across the Ocean
Location: Stephen Bali MP Office, Bike Rack, Civic Plaza, Blacktown
Artist: Robyn May Caughlan

Description of the work on smart bin: Across the Ocean represents the many roads the artist has travelled in her life in Australia, and has been deeply influenced by the seven times she has been to other countries.

Artist bio: Robyn Caughlan is as well-known for her textile designs and her paintings. She is one of the Dharug/ Darug artist who was engaged in the designs of the mosaics for the public art works in Blacktown Village Green. Robyn has exhibited her works overseas and taken her fashion artwork to Egypt, Singapore, Italy and the UK. Her works are part of collections in the National Maritime Museum, the Powerhouse Museum and the Keraya Art Museum in Helsinki, Finland.

Location: City Walk, Corner of David Lane, Blacktown
Artist: Emmanuel Asante

Description of the work on smart bin: This artwork is created for and dedicated to the artist’s little sister Gloria.

Artist bio: Emanuel’s art practice critically examines and reflects his identity as a young Ghanaian migrant to Australia, incorporating traditional African metaphors and cultural symbols, to evoke visual-aesthetic experiences and modes of storytelling.

Unprecedented: A word on repeat
Location: 22 Main Street, Blacktown
Artist: Tanika Meeks

Description of the work on smart bin: This piece represents the 202/2021 COVID-19 situation using colour combinations that are unprecedented, jarring and puzzling.

Artist bio: Tanika Meeks is a descendant of Tagalaka and Gunggandji tribes from far north Queensland and lives on Dia Dia Wurrung country. Her artwork blend culture with a contemporary methodology. The intrinsic use of colour creates an oddity that appears childlike yet sophisticated. As a science teacher, she has a love for patterns and this is visible in the repetitive nature of her work.

Waratah and Dragonfly
Location: 7-11/Railway Station Escalator, Blacktown
Artist: Leanne Tobin

Description of the work on smart bin: The Waratah and Dragonfly connect to the Greater Sydney region. The waratah was once used as a symbolic gesture of friendship, often given by the Dharug/Darug to those settlers who showed kindness. The dragonfly acknowledges the dramatic change and transition that these times brought with them.

Artist bio: Leanne Tobin is a Dharug/Darug artist who aims to evoke an environmental conscience and respect towards Ngurra/Country and her original people.

Medicine Women of the Flannel Flower
Location: Mt Druitt Hub, Mt Druitt Hub
Artist: Dianne Ussher

Description of the work on smart bin: Medicine Women of the Flannel Flower is symbolic of the survival and resilience of the traditional owners of this country.

Artist bio: Dianne Ussher is a proud Dharug/Darug woman. Dianne is passionate about the survival of her people, culture, country, and storytelling truth in her art and word.

Windows in Time
Location: Riverstone Railway Station, Riverstone
Artist: Jan Cleveringa, Rosalind Stanley and Leanne Mulgo Watson

Description of the work on smart bin: Inspired by local history and surrealism, whilst collaborating with the community, this digital painting holds years of ancient and modern symbols and stories about wondrous Riverstone.

Artist bios: Jan Cleveringa is a contemporary multidisciplinary artist exploring the impact of global cultural change in society and in particular about how we relate to the environment and sustainability.

Rosalind Stanley is a multidisciplinary artist, who creates works that evoke a deep emotive experience in the audience, encapsulating the real and raw nature of human emotions.

Leanne Mulgo Watson is a Darug/Dharug artist-educator and is the daughter of Aunty Edna Watson, Darug Elder for Western Sydney. She has been a director of the Darug Custodian Aboriginal Corporation for many years. Leanne is a practicing artist/painter, public artist and educator. She has been commissioned by Blacktown City Council on numerous public art projects.
She is the author of Cooee Mittigar her first book.

Hidden Natures Delight
Location: Lalor Park Community Centre, 1 Freeman Street, Lalor Park
Artist: Julieanne Ross Allcorn
Description of the work on smart bin: Hidden Natures Delight calls the viewer to stand still, listen, look and fill the mind and body with a stillness much needed in our busy lives.

Artist bio: Julianne is a practising artist and art teacher with over 20 years experience. She has been awarded multiple prizes. She is passionate about Australian bush landscape bringing the flora and fauna alive immersing the viewer through her landscape.

Tags of Beauty
Location: Rooty Hill Skate Park, Station Street, Rooty Hill
Artist: Dot Matrix Design

Description of the work on smart bin: ‘The girl’s beauty was so stunning that we just had to paint it’. We incorporated traditional aerosol art with old school graffiti tag style to come up with this image.

Artist bio: Dot Matrix Design is a duo made up of local artists Vasilios and Paul, 2 lifelong friends on an aerosol art journey to brighten up the world.

Location: RAAF Memorial Park, Whalan
Artist: Tara Sheather

Description of the work on smart bin: Outlandish is an abstract forest scene, strikingly out of the ordinary, illustrative but also realistic in a sense that the elements were recognisable.

Artist bio: Tara is an emerging artist from Western Sydney who works across different mediums, considering herself a mixed media artist, currently exploring photographic processes, drawing techniques and digital illustration. Inspired by her environment and through years of studying fine arts, Tara hopes to display an observation of the nature she admires based on the aesthetics of shape, texture and pattern in which they possess.

Let Me Carry Your Burden
Location: Kimberley Park, Rooty Hill
Artist: Lilith Bloom

Description of the work on smart bin: Let Me Carry Your Burden, 2020, was inspired by the music and lyrics of ‘Burden’ by Keith Urban. It represents the weight that is felt while battling depression and mental health issues.

Artist bio: Lilith Bloom is a Sydney based, contemporary artist with over 20 years experience. Her work is heavily inspired by music and lyrics, with each painting titled from lyrics that evoked that work. Each artwork is structured in a variety of ways, from the act of ‘playing’ with colours, textures, symbols etc, to a clear vision of the palette, concept and size, that the song evokes.

Location: Lions Park, Riverstone
Artist: Jan Cleveringa

Description of the work on smart bin: Inspired by collaborating with the natural moving environment, the wind and swaying branches, this mark making communication painting between the artist and the natural environment is a metaphor of reorganising the ‘natural’.

Artist bio: Jan Cleveringa is a contemporary multidisciplinary artist exploring the impact of global cultural change in society and in particular about how we relate to the environment and sustainability.

Location: Vinegar Hill Reserve, Kellyville Ridge
Artist: Patrice Wills

Description of the work on smart bin: This painting was made in response to riding through the high country of Kosciusko National Park and the sightings of the brumbies that roam there. The artist has always lived in Western Sydney and remembers the area when it was rural with grassy fields scattered with horses.

Artist bio: Exploring the relational intersections between people, place and paint, Patrice aims to capture her experience of what is seen and felt, through the process of painting. Patrice exhibits regularly and is often selected as a finalist in major art awards. Her work is accrued in private and public collections.

Aerosol Villain
Location: Camomile Reserve, The Ponds
Artist: Karla Hayes

Description of the work on smart bin: Aerosol Villain is part of a temporary mural which draws from pop culture references and nature found in the area.

Artist bio: Karla Hayes is a burgeoning artist based in the Illawarra area. She is a multi-disciplinary artist working on Dharawal land. She completed her Honours in Design in Visual Communications at UTS in 2019 with a series of international student led creative design & public art projects and an international design award under her belt. In 2020 Karla began applying her design skills to large scale art installations, forming creative collaborations, rapidly upskilling within the fine art world and forging a creative practice that encourages thoughtful engagement with Australian flora and fauna.

Rainbow Bee Eater
Location: Prospect Park, Aldgate Street, Prospect
Artist: Holly Oakley

Description of the work on smart bin: Rainbow Bee Eater was created as part of a Blacktown Open Studio ‘Palette Swap Challenge’. This bird reflected the colour palette of another participant and was created using colour pencils and watercolour paints on paper.

Artist bio: Holly is an artist that uses a combination of traditional and digital mediums. She strives to arouse the imagination with focus on creating a strong narrative through her works of art. Being an artist has been a way to cope with life struggles.

Smart Bin Gallery

This project has provided Blacktown with upgraded and modern waste bins to improve the efficiency and sustainability of the waste management system. Smart littering can reduce the number of overflowing bins and litter, and reduce the frequency of collection and transportation, ultimately leading to cost savings for the council. The use of solar energy as a power source reduces the carbon footprint of the waste management system and supports the council’s efforts to transition to renewable energy sources. Overall, the ‘Smart Bins’ project is a significant step towards a more innovative and sustainable waste management system in Blacktown.