It has been so busy at NEA lately - and with the lead up to NEA’s Wall to Wall 'fringe' festivities there's increasingly chat about 'how' things will be done, rather than 'what' is to be done. NEA's activities coincide with the official Wall to Wall Festival Program. You won't find them on the official Wall to Wall booklet, however we've come to regard them as key events in the Wall to Wall Fringe Festival! They are being cross promoted by Benalla Street Art, which has allocated wall space to a number of local community street artists, including NEA's Tim Bowtell, Tim has been allocated the wall at Primal Gym which faces the railway line.
The Door of Hope project is entering its final stages, with the Exhibition opening on April 6th focusing teachers and participants alike. Thanks go to teachers Edie Black and Annie Longmuir for designing and delivering such wonderful courses. Please put Thursday 6th April from 6 to 8 pm in your diaries for the opening of the Door of Hope exhibition.
The Door of Hope has presented many challenges to NEA, a small non-profit voluntter based organisation. Organisations receiving grants for such projects typically have facilities and systems in place and can allocate a paid project worker to coordinate the project - however NEA has been entering new ground. With two courses with paid teachers, rather than workshops developed and administered and marketed largely by the artisan involved, we needed someone to take on a coordinating role, a staff room; access to wifi, a computer and printer; additional tables and more.. Each time we move into the next stage of the project new, sometimes unanticipated, needs arise, resulting in fast footwork to meet the latest challenge.
The 'in kind' contribution by volunteers, exhibiting artisans and artisans on the executive committee to the Door of Hope project has been crucial to its development and operation.
The Door of Hope will need to find alternative sources to continue in its current format as we have been informed that Tomorrow Today can only fund such projects on one occasion. Another format the development of a discretionary fund of monies to be used to provide reduced and at times free courses to people who have difficulty payng for art courses.
NEA is constantly responding to logistical challenges. Providing the venue for the upcoming Benalla Shorts Film Festival has involved Tim Schloss devising a way in which to hold a seated gathering for up to 60 people. Having available more studio space involves Cornelia and the committee exploring new ground. Commission rates for large works by NEA artisans; how to manage workshop bookings which require an additional layer of administrative support and what is a cost effective way in which to provide some level of WiFi coverage are questions also under consideration. There is never a dull moment.
Lots of other things are happening at NEA including the call for entries to the 'In Your Face' Portrait Exhibition. Entries close on June 1, with the exhibition opening on July 1st. Contact Cornelia for more details.
Kate Jenvey's exhibition at the Benalla Art Gallery Gallery is midway and has been a memorable and most successful event in Benalla's art calendar. Kate recently spoke to the U3A Art Appreciation group who spoke glowingly about her talk and her exhibition.
Cornelia recently added a post about 'Project Project' to Facebook. Like NEA, it began in 'pop up' form, is volunteer based, and now an ongoing concern. 'Project Project' doesn't appear to have many dull moments either. Check out the article... 'A Scrappy Volunteer Art Space draws creatives in South Omaha'.
‘Caught’ NEA artisan, sculptor Garth Hughes, who came in to see what he could do to help out recently.
Occasional Blog by Bev Lee
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Wall to Wall Benalla Festival
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Address: 122 Bridge Street East, Benalla, VIC 3672