Wandering around the city of Melbourne looking for Gertrude lane Lisa and I were lost. I didn’t know anything about this lane, but Lisa who owns a cool resale shop in Portland, knew that Gertrude lane was famous for hip shops with interesting items. Lisa has always been an expert of spotting something unique and at a low price which is really hard to do these days since resale has become such a booming business.
She’s always been good at finding deals but not great at directions. I don’t know where we were, she didn’t either. We had taken the tram a bit of a distance out of the central part of the city. If there was a Gertrude east we were on Gertrude west. There wasn’t a lot out in the area we were wandering around, mostly residential. We found a quaint coffee shop, and a couple of thrift stores, but the great discovery was this dead-ended alleyway.
All kinds of hidden nooks and alleyways with tiny shops can be found in random neighborhoods.
We found ourselves back in the city near the National and International galleries, and from there we headed over to Hosier Lane.
Hosier Lane is one of two well known graffiti alleys. I’m not certain how long artists have claimed these alleys as places to make art, but there are several layers of paintings and stencils. The work is always changing because in the graffiti world nothing is permanent- unless of course you are Banksy or something and you become one of those coveted street artists and your shit sells for millions. I guess in a way it was street art that first got Basquiat seen, but his canvass work surpasses his street work- in my opinion- on a tangent here…
Hosier Lane has become a tourist attraction. This alleyway that has been painted and repainted again and again is like a rotating gallery. The alley gallery. What you see today will not be there the next time. I can promise that what is in these pictures are not there now.
As you can tell by the limos, and taxis, and people wandering through the ally, that is directly across the street from a museum, that this is no ordinary alleyway.
One museum is for free the other has a small fee, and both are worth the visit.