The first and biggest mural painting in the mainland by Argentinian artist Martin Ron, 34. The painter started his project on a huge wall at Raja Uda shoplot depicting a man holding out his palm to feed turtles which symbolises Penang's turtle conservation. This would be Martin's 200th painting and he chose Malaysia, particulary Penang to showcase his talents and abilities. Martin has two assistance ; Matt Gorrick, 31 from Australia and Sam Carter, 29 from Britain. Pix by Amir Irsyad Omar

BUTTERWORTH: The curtain will rise for the largest mural on mainland Penang come this Saturday.

Coming on the back of a large following from the murals drawn by Ernest Zacharevic in George Town, Argentinian Martin Ron is also turning this centuries-old port town as hip as its island sister.

It comes as no surprise as Zacharevic and Ron are good friends, and the latter has been working on a larger than life mural of a man feeding turtles at a wall of a shophouse along Jalan Raja Uda here for the past week.

The man in the mural is Ron’s best friend, Matt Gorrick, 31, from Australia.

It is the 200th painting for Ron, after stunning audiences with similar work in the United States, United Kingdom, Belgium, Thailand and Chile.

“I don’t paint celebrities or politicians as they do not fascinate me. I don’t like to to paint strong statements or figures.

“I paint common people, people on the road just like you and I. As in this mural in Malaysia, it depicts my friend Matt .

"I like painting fantastic situations on the street, like a everyday occurrences with surrealism and situations of fantasy,” he said when met by NST.

Ron began work on his project a week ago with two of his assistants, Sam Carter, 29, from Britain and Gorrick.

Ron’s previous project was in Thailand where he drew a woman taking a selfie with her smartphone at a railway station. He declined to say who the woman was but it is widely believed to be his girlfriend.

Ron explains that the mural in Raja Uda shoplot wall is a three-dimensional (3D) artwork, using traditional painting methods.

He uses the brush, water and oil-based paint to complete his art.

“I hate spray can paint materials,” he expressed.

After Penang, Ron is headed to a subway station in Italy.

He is in Penang upon invitation by the Hin Bus Depot Art Centre and Woolley Development Sdn Bhd.