Street Art Walking Update

Just a quick post to share the latest Street Art Walking news.

So, in June we hosted our first exhibition and we are still getting positive feedback about how great the night was. I’d like to thank the artists and everyone involved with the night. We got to meet lots of fresh faces, as well as a chance to catch up with friends from other local businesses. The night wouldn’t have been made possible without King Street Hotel, so thanks to Russel and the entire team. It is great to work with such a happy, flexible and innovative team of people. We are certainly looking forward to working with them again.

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July has been exciting and a bit of an adjustment period, as I have gained a contract for a role as Placemaking Coordinator for Hunter Development Coorporation. It’s early days yet and have some exciting initiatives that I’m researching. This new role has meant that some of the SAW projects that were pending (without secure budgets) have had to be wound down, or put on hold.

Never fear, we are still behind the magic curtain, ticking over on a bunch of cool stuff. Like what?

A new website and a new (first ever) art walk map, designed by Pocket Design. A special thank you to Brett Piva for all his time and energy into assisting myself with the new directions and design items. Brett is also an amazing artist and one of the team members to Time & Place, a fantastically fresh ARI in Newcastle. Their current show (featuring a personal fav Eddie Botha) looks fabulous and I can’t wait to see it, get in before 10th August – on Hunter Street, near The CBD Hotel.

We are scheming an event that will be a collaboration with The Opening Hours, after deciding that the timeframes were just too short to make it in as a satellite event of This Is Not Art. We really, really wanted to make it in with time, but it’s not feasible. This year, anyways. We ha e the walls secured, funding bodies are happy with concept and next will be scheduling a time that’s feasible. It’s looking to be pretty big and we’d rather do it well, with as many involved as possible, as opposed to trimming it back!

We are still scheming some new works to be installed soon, so stay tuned!

We will be blogging live from New York next month and are accepting stickers via mail. Get in touch if you want to come along to NY with us 😉

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(above image featuring NY stencil card taken in Curve Gallery Newcastle)

Street Art Walking Update

Renew Newcastle’s New Adventures

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Many people ask me, ‘What is it that you do?’

Since late 2008, I have been involved with Renew Newcastle (RN). It has made such a full contribution to my artist career and lifestyle, here in humble, Newcastle.

It still surprises me that some people may not have heard of (or seen) RN. For myself, and the many individuals that have been engaged with RN, it has been a life-changing experience.

My first involvement began when mustering interest with local artists to form an Artist Run Initiative (ARI). ARThive gallery, collective and studios was the result of my independent research and the collective efforts of over seven artists. We made ‘good’ in a building that was left empty, forgotten by the city. We swept, sanded, puttied, drilled and labored away for weeks to create a gallery space for ourselves, and new artists who could see the potential in our DIY space.

The experience of forming our own collective space was very empowering. We went from being Uni students to practising (emerging) artists. We were holding artists talks, curating group shows and ‘living the dream’ in our own ‘place’. This was the stuff we read about at Uni; artists forming their own groups and working towards a bigger goal. Ours was to have a scene worth staying in Newcastle for. Often, graduation meant a time to leave for bigger waters in places like Melbourne.

ARThive has been running since 2009 and continues to be a place for local artists to experiment with their art practices.

Today, there’s no need to flock to the big smoke. Newcastle has its own scene that’s abundant with the best kind of culture; DIY.

You may have heard about the grassroots movement happening in the Newcastle CBD?

Well, it’s kind of a big deal.

This Thursday, 29th March, is your chance to see it for yourself. Come along for some drinks from 5pm at the Renew Newcastle HQ, located at 3 Morgan Street in The Hunter Street Mall.

The evening will include an introduction from RN Founder, Marcus Westbury, followed by a guided walking tour of the latest RN shops and galleries.

All the RN spaces in the Mall area have special opening hours until 7pm so you can buy or browse for unique, local and handcrafted gifts, fashion, homewares, art.

Discover young, independant local fashion designers; contemporary jewellery, a vintage photobooth and lo-fi photography gallery; Roller Derby sticker design; delicate paper illustration; millinery; and fantasy clock sculptures which have to be seen to be believed!

Now is the time to visit your own ‘Hunter Street Mall’ backyard and discover the ‘buzz’ that has a lot to do with this amazing organisation, Renew Newcastle.

Renew Newcastle’s New Adventures

Cleaning up the city

This week we have been measuring up, well, lanes of space.

As many of you know, we have been (literally) working in Theatre Lane, pasting up art posters to ‘lift’ the area. The project is going well, considering the torrents of rain we have been having. Today, when we were doing some maintenance, we came across a very newly dead pigeon. We won’t go into detail, just to say, this is not the first time we’ve encountered such matter on the street.

In one area of Hunter Street mall, there are a number of properties sharing lane way space. Often, these areas, become overlooked and uncared for.

Our newest project is bringing together over three property owners, equating to over 500 per square metres of space.

The areas will need serious cleaning and clearing before artists can work in the area. Today we came across many spiders (including one very huge and angry red back), weeds and a broken couch, rotten with water and whatever else.

Soon the area will be transformed from a black hole into a brighter place, filled with artworks.

Expressions of interest from artists will be called very soon. Preparing photos, measurements and maps at the moment.

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Cleaning up the city