Stylist, milliner, art director and all-round creative maven, Crystal Birch has set a colourful new public art installation free in the Neighbourgoods Market entrance in Braamfontein. A flock of tropical Macau parrots are turning heads skywards as they fly across the building facades on De Beer Street in a bold splash of vibrant colour.

This bright installation comes ahead of the Capitec Color Run, which is dubbed ‘the happiest 5km run on the planet’. The Color Run is an un-timed race in which thousands of participants, or ‘Color Runners’, are doused from head to toe in different colours at each kilometre. Charl Nel, head of communications at Capitec, says that “Capitec Bank, like The Color Run, believes in health, happiness, individuality, freedom of expression, living life in technicolour, having fun and being YOU”.

Crystal explains that the Macau motif perfectly embodies this sentiment as it’s feathered her alter-ego, bringing a burst of colour to the streets of Jozi. “I chose the parrot as it’s a free-flying bird, colourful and loud!” Using the technique of wheat pasting, Crystal and her team applied the birds to the walls of buildings before attaching the 3D fabric wings that span the entrance to the market and brush against passersby underneath. “I wanted to make a giant, bright bird that would fly in the concrete jungle of Jozi representing freedom and a bold self”, she explains. “The colourful wings of the Macau should inspire people to break free and express themselves. Visitors to the market will see a parrot spiral above them like a rainbow of WOW.”

Get your entry to the #CapitecColorRun, the happiest 5km un-timed run on the planet, taking place from Roosevelt High School near Emmarentia Dam on Sunday 20th September.

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