Nathan Eyers is 25 years old and lives in Lismore. He’s the project manager of The Back Alley Gallery (B.A.G), and...
Nathan Eyers is 25 years old and lives in Lismore. He’s the project manager of The Back Alley Gallery (B.A.G), and has been thinking about this project for nearly 2 years, and actually putting paint on the walls for almost 12 months.
He said there were lots of steps along the way… mind numbing political hoops, locating business owners,
digging up local, inter state and international artists and trying to make the project as original as possible. (He said with absolutely no experience to use as to how to go about the whole thing…Its been a challenge).
“The first step was to draw up a proposal. We actually submitted the proposal twice. The first time…nothing happened…. guess I wasn’t motivated enough,” Nathan said. “Then 6-8 month later, we submitted it again..this round it was perfect timing and I had done a lot of independent leg work promoting the project. Lismore Council had just started to delve into the whole ‘Art in the Heart’ scheme and The Back Alley Gallery was just what they were looking for. And so, it was approved by the board about 2 months later…And from there it got crazy.”
” And now I’m doing a guest blog..”
What keeps you motivated?
My family is defiantly the main motivator in my life.
I have also met some amazing artists throughout this whole experience. They are always pushing me to try different things and think outside the box. Or “Just look at the book!” My art touches on a lot of things in the universe, like extra terrestrials, conspiracy, how society ‘works’… Just the usual..
I try and keep up with the constant evolution of street art, getting inspiration from other artists, and supporting the underground world of art. I am always trying to think up crazy ways to make people question their environment.
What’s your favourite way to unwind?
Going for long romantic walks on the beach, every now and then I’ll go for a swim in the Wilson River with the wobbegongs. Haha!
If I’m not doing either of those two things you’ll find me pointlessly trawling the internet for hours on end, drawing or drinking way too much coffee.
How do people find you/your business?
You can go onto the Facebook Page. Just put in the name The Back Alley Gallery and all the info you’ll need on the subject is right there. I’m also at the Republic of Coffee Espresso Bar a lot of the time….I have a stack of cards there too.
What have been your biggest challengers, and how did you overcome them.?
One of the biggest challenges associated with the B.A.G project has been explaining and getting acceptance from the locals. People hear street art and automatically associate it with graffiti or tagging. The B.A.G is a Street Art Gallery with each artist putting in a huge amount of thought and effort to create a piece of art that is accessible to everyone. There are elements similar to graffiti within the lane-way, but its main priority is the art, not the politics that sometimes get caught up with the graffiti world. In my opinion street art and graffiti are both part of the same family. I respect both, the difference between them is (in my opinion) graffiti has created a bad stigma for its self. People don’t generally like seeing tags all over the city, they see it as vandalism. There is actually a lot of amazing history behind the whole tagging epidemic. It all started on a hot Summers night, in the late 60′s in New York with a guy named ‘CORNBREAD’…um.. just Google him… But when it comes to Street Art.. society finds it more appealing. Well thought out art in the streets of the city always makes a better socially acceptable point. But I guess its all comes down to personal belief. Rant over.
What’s your favourite brand and why?
It would have to be our major supporters Scribe Outlined.They’re a clothing line based in Melbourne, they support graffiti writers and street artists of Australia,specialising in making original street clothing. Everyone should support these guys because they’re one of very few crews of people dedicated to their beliefs. By supporting them, you’re directly supporting some of Australia’s finest artists.
What has been your biggest marketing success?
The B.A.G hasnt really been caught up with much marketing as a project…yet. The individual artists involved have however, received some commission jobs, which stemmed from local approval of the quality of art in the lane way. Getting paid for doing what we love is always good. But what I am really trying to do is make people like the space they’re in, and respect street art and graffiti for what it is. If that happens.. I guess it’s a success!
What do you know now, that you wished you had known when you were establishing your business?
Being a project manager is a massive job, extremely rewarding, but, at times, a ridiculously stressful one. The B.A.G project is only small at the moment, but this is just the beginning and hopefully it will make a huge statement one day. I also know now that art is an expensive thing to do on a mass scale.. there’s so many little details to think about before you do something like this in a public space. I have learnt that having a solid crew of people around you is invaluable. To have
a team of people to help you with all those little things makes a huge difference. I promise it will make everything easier.
The whole lane way has been an a achievement in itself….one I am very very proud of. The community’s support of our endeavour has been amazing.
But it always comes back to my family & friends. With out them I wouldn’t have achieved any of these things. My wife, Erin, has been the biggest supporter of the B.A.G project since the day I thought it up on the drive home from Nimbin. Its been a great opportunity…
We’re Taking Back The Streets. Piece By Peace!!