Papergirl delivers street art to the masses

“Everyone has something unique they can offer the project.”
—Travis Dewan, papergirl Brisbane organiser—

Last week I read about a new street art concept happening in Brisbane which takes inspiration from the old-school paperboys of America.

Originally founded in Berlin in 2006, Papergirl Brisbane follows a simple concept: art and writing is submitted by the city’s creative (and not-so-creative) people, exhibited in a gallery for one night and then rolled up and distributed by bicycle to the random passers-by in Brisbane’s CBD, South Bank and West End.

Artworks accepted include drawings, photographs, text, pictures, stickers, posters—anything creative and considered that can be rolled and distributed by bicycle. Writers, poets, and lyricists are also invited to get involved in the project

It’s about sharing art in public spaces, without focusing on any particular target demographic.

Papergirl Brisbane organiser Travis Dewan came across the Papergirl project in South Africa.

“I was travelling through Johannesburg and heard about the event taking place the following week; I left South Africa before I could see what it was all about but I curious to explore this concept in Australia,” he said.

“It seemed like a great way to engage the wider public of Brisbane is a fun way.”

Last year’s event—the first in Brisbane—was a great success with more than 300 pieces of physical work and online work submitted.

“People loved the project and wanted to be part of it once they heard about it or received some work from our delivery … I hope they all join in again,” Travis said.

There is still time to get involved in this year’s event, with submissions open until 5pm Sunday (10 March) and volunteer cyclists always needed to distribute the word.

“We open up the project to everyone/anyone who wants to participate or be involved,” Travis said.

“Artworks aren’t curated; we use everything that is submitted. The art rolls cannot be sold and are not delivered to subscribers, so people eager for a roll, just have to be at the right place at the right time.

“Everyone has something unique they can offer the project and in turn offer to a stranger on the road.”

And for the budding art collectors who want to increase their chances of receiving a piece from this year’s event, Travis’ advice is simple.

“Just be around the city, South Bank or West End on Saturday 16 March between 12pm and 2pm and look out for a group of happy bike riders with rolls hanging out of their bags!”

Keen to be involved but lacking any real creative talent when it comes to artwork, I decided to delve deep into my photo collection for some images to submit.

Here’s a mix of what I came up with—and the best news is, to submit them, all I had to do was email them over to the Papergirl team and they’ll print them off as A4 works and add them to the exhibition.


For more information on how to get involved with Papergirl Brisbane 2013, visit

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