Sunday, October 9, 2011

art4place, Festuri and Sunshine Coast Sister Cities

art4place was invited by the Festuri multicultural festival organisers and the Sunshine Coast Sister Cities Association to provide a day of community art that had an emphasis on multiculturalism and also the relationship between the Sunshine Coast and sister cities in Japan and China.

The art event was to be carried out from 10-30am-4pm on Saturday 8 October 2011. But that plan went awry slightly when unseasonal morning thunderstorms swept from the west and drench the Sunshine Coast hinterland and Caloundra where the festival was happening. The storms and rain cleared by midday; and with the promise of a fine afternoon art4place artists set up in shade covers by 1pm and created art with children and parents until 4.30pm.

Barry Smith © art4place-SC Sister Cities art station

Children were invited to do a variety of free art inspired by Japan and China including making: Japanese inspired butterfly fans; Japanese and Chinese inspired headbands; dragon puppets; and the decoration of a large parading dragon - attaching scales and painting on and painted decorations. The dragon was created for an event earlier this year but got a real work over by children of all ages this year.

Barry Smith © Fans, puppets and headbands
Barry Smith © Some children were very precise
Barry Smith © Even the little ones got into dragon decoration
Barry Smith © More dragon decoration
Barry Smith © HMMM! Dragon scales?
Barry Smith © HMMM! More dragon scales?

Barry Smith © Exquisite dragon colour palet?
Children could also paint ceramic dragon; but given that the dragons were hand made and fired parents were asked to pay for the unpainted dragons. Almost 30 children painted the ceramic dragons in their own unique colours.

Barry Smith © Biege dragons become exquisitely coloured
Barry Smith © More coloured dragons
The large dragon was paraded through the park twice in the later part of the afternoon. We were only going to do it once but children asked could we do it again; and of course 8 more volunteers went parading, growling and undulating the dragon.

Barry Smith © Dragon carriers at the ready
And the dragon was left behind so it could be used in the Festuri parade on Sunday 9 October.

Barry Smith © Fearsome creature at sunset
Even with the reduced time available about 100 children did one or more activities. The children ranged in ages from 2-12 years of age.

Big thanks to the art4place artists: Christine, Edith-Ann, Carol, Noela,  Fiona, Jenny, Kim, Mieke and Barry for their work in preparing for and on the day. Thanks to Festuri for inviting us to share art with children. Thanks to the Sunshine Coast Sister Cities Association for sponsoring the art4place community art event to promote the knowledge of the sister city relationship with Japan and China. And thanks to Fiona for most of the photos used in this post.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Cairns of Hope and Inspiration

I thought we might share some photos of the the art4place work that went on in Pecan Park as part of the Festival of Walks Maleny party on 20 August 2011. art4place artists Noela, Tracey, Edith-Ann and I worked with Tracey's partner and Fiona M and other visitors to Pecan Park to create Cairns of Hope and Inspiration

The aim was to create cairns with park visitors, party-goers and walkers out of timber and twigs collected from the edges of the park; and to get people to place messages of hope and inspiration into the cairns. The art was ephemeral in that it would either rot away, be burnt or be redistributed into the edges of the park. Whilst the photos below shows that one of the four cairns was burnt over night the others were still in place.

Barry Smith © Cairn after the fire
I really felt a sense of strength that community artists had given their time to create the installation of cairns.

Barry Smith © Cairn- beginnings
Barry Smith © A vista with cairn
Barry Smith © Tracey's cairn
Barry Smith © Scale of one cairn and majestic trees

And some people did contribute their messages of hope and inspiration - and sent those vibes out - even as they burnt.

Barry Smith © Messages of hope and inspiration
Barry Smith © Global messages
Barry Smith © Cairn with messages of hope and inspiration
Big thanks to Noela, Tracey, Edith-Ann and Fiona M - stars.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunshine Coast Council - Sister Cities and Festuri multicultural festival

Australia Day by the beach was the setting for the Festuri festival after it was washed out back in October. Art4place artists joined with thousands of others for the festival; but were there to create artworks on behalf of the Sunshine Coast Council's Sister Cities Association. The art works celebrated their association with our Chinese Sister city of Jingdezhen and our Friendship city of Xiamen.

The theme was “Dragons” and we did all sorts of art activities, mostly with children, which created dragons of all shapes and sizes. 

Children painted and attached scales to a 7m long calico dragon which had a fabulous and colourful head, and then carried it down to and along the beach. It caused quite a stir!

Jim had prepared a dragon on a board and children (and adults) wrote their name on the scale and then painted the scale as well – it was great for big and small kids alike and was a really interactive and colourful piece.

Kim had made dozens of clay dragons that children could paint and either take home; or leave to be washed and recycled and painted over again.  

Noela created dragon puppets and headbands to be coloured in, cut and made.

Christine, Barry and Fiona helped out a lot! It was a great celebration and the children learned about sister cities and friendship cities and basically enjoyed making all the different dragons.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

art4place at Festuri and Bunya Dreaming January 2011

A number of art4place artists were to carry out dragon themed artworks at the Festuri event on 10 October 2010 - but that event was washed out by rain and severe winds.

Festuri, a multicultural celebration, is now to take place on 26 January 2011 and 6 art4place artists (Christine, Jim, Noela , Kim, Fiona and Barry) will be carrying out a range of dragon themed art, mainly with children, on behalf of the Sunshine Coast Council's (SCC) Sister Cities Association.

Why dragons - because of the links between SCC and Xiamen and Jingdezhen in China. The art event will run from 1-4pm and will create a temporary sense of place relating to the China sister cities. We will record the day and share some of the highlights on the blog.

Last year art4place (fomerly Artsite) contributed to Bunya Dreaming 2010 by helping with the design of the larger artworks on the Baroon site.

This year Beverly Hand, the coordinator of the Bunya Dreaming Indigenous gathering, has invited art4place to attend the gathering and work with children and their parents to create small ephemeral art pieces. The Bunya Dreaming gathering is set down for 29 January 2011 at Baroon Pocket Dam (9am to 7pm).

Up to 9 art4place artists have indicated they will attend (Edith-Ann, Jim, Kim, Tracey, Rob, Noela, Fiona,  Barry and Christine); and, in two shifts, will run an art tent where children etc can create art pieces from sticks, grasses, leaves, Bunya nuts etc gathered from the site. Pieces will be constructed using biodegradable glues, twine and paint. We are not sure what will emerge but in the main the art will focus on four local Indigenous totems: King Parrot, python, Wedge Tail Eagle and goanna. No doubt the Bunya nut and tree will also feature. Pieces created may become part of a temporary installation - creating place that tells a story.

We will record the day and hope to share some of the highlights of the art on this blob.