Surry Hills: The Reformatory Caffeine Lab

In what used to be a driveway is now a local coffee joint in Surry Hills, thanks to Columbian coffee roaster, Simon Jaramillo. In search of a strong cup of coffee, I ran in here one afternoon on a break from one of many part time jobs I held while living in Sydney. The narrow space (11 feet wide, 50 feet in length) has a very industrial, dark, garage-like feel with a life-size, comic strip mural, covering the walls from floor to ceiling. The comic strip was designed by Simon and depicts a story of Batman’s The Joker as a Mad Professor in a “guns-blasing coffee-heist.”

The mural was hand painted by the renowned Mongolian-born, Melbourne local artist, Heesco [his-koh]. Heesco is a celebrated global muralist with notable works in major cities such as Sydney, Melbourne, Brooklyn and more.

On Heesco’s blog, he recalls the job for The Reformatory:

“By far, this was one of the best gigs I ever did, purely because of the creative freedom I had in developing the concept and the artwork. I know my 80s and 90s superhero comics, it was a blast drawing what I love without anyone telling me to tone it down. This is my version of The Dark Knight Returns, Judge Dredd, and Sin City combined, ha!”

I highly recommend you follow his blog here.