Maitland’s most famous ugg boots have received a makeover thanks to a partnership between Mortels Sheepskin Factory and The Mai-Wel Group.
Participants in Mai-Wel’s Creative Arts program have made their mark on the iconic big ugg boots at Mortels, decorating the shoes in celebration of diversity and inclusion.
The boots – which are a massive 13 times the size of women’s size 8 ugg boots – have become a local landmark on the lawn of the Thornton premises at 1 Weakleys Drive, wowing passers-by with different themed designs at various times throughout the year.
Most recently the boots were painted blue back in June after the NSW Blues snatched victory in the 2018 State of Origin series.
It was while the boots were blue that Mortels general manager Stephanie Mortel had a discussion with Mai-Wel CEO Pennie Kearney at a Maitland Business Chamber meeting about the next theme for the boots.
Ms Kearney mentioned that Mai-Wel Creative Arts may be able to help and from there conversation continued between Ms Mortel and Mai-Wel Creative Arts facilitator Steve Burchill.
The Creative Arts program provides all-inclusive activities for experienced or aspiring artists to help develop self-awareness and creativity in a range of arts and performance methods including singing, dancing, drama, music, arts and craft.
This is the first time the Creative Arts participants have taken part in this kind of art installation.
“The opportunity to make our mark on such a unique feature and famous landmark is not only a great opportunity to showcase our work to a mass audience, it’s also been a valuable learning opportunity for our artists to experiment with different canvases,” Mr Burchill said.
Stephanie Mortel said she was glad to have engaged Mai-Wel Creative Arts for the unique design and was thrilled to see the community getting behind the freshly painted boots through social media comments and stopping by to get photos with the boots.
“It’s very exciting to showcase local art and we have received a lot of really positive feedback,” Ms Mortel said.
The giant boots were installed at the Mortels Sheepskin Factory in 2015. They weigh roughly 600 kilograms each.
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