On Saturday afternoon November 3 at City Gallery Wellington three leading New Zealand creators of temporary public art come together to discuss recent projects that have made a major impact on the arts in New Zealand in the last three years: Wellington’s Letting Space and Performance Arcade and Christchurch’s Gapfiller. These three organisations are changing the face of New Zealand public art.
Public art is no longer just the domain of permanent sculpture. Increasingly in New Zealand, as elsewhere in the world public space is treated as a dynamic place for temporary artwork that often blurs cultural boundaries, treats the public as participants as much as an audience and looks to help engender social change.
Wellington based Letting Space has followed a trajectory from utilising the refuse of the 2008 financial crash in the form of vacant property toward the exploration of community service. Seeking to transform the relationship between artists, the public and their environments to enable social change their work looks to increase the public commons and this year their work has ranged from a geothermal public operated fountain to a mobile radio station.
Produced by Playground NZ, The Performance Arcade has used shipping containers outside Te Papa as a venue for installations to engage passers-by in genre-breaking performance, live art and digital media. They won the Visual Arts, Outdoor Show, and Production Design awards at the 2012 NZ Fringe Festival Awards.
Gap Filler is a Christchurch creative urban regeneration initiative started in response to the recent Canterbury earthquakes. Through everything from a pop up dance floor and cycle powered cinema to a temporary sauna Gap Filler aims to temporarily activate vacant sites within Christchurch with creative projects, to make for a more interesting, dynamic and vibrant city.
The event is followed by a crowd-funded party off Tory St in Wellington to celebrate independent public art making in the Capital. The public can support these organizations and gain an invitation by pledging to help make the party happen by 28 October at https://www.pledgeme.co.nz/Crowd/Details/531
Making Dreams Realty A Presentation by three temporary public art creators: Letting Space, Performance Arcade and Gapfiller
Adam Auditorium, City Gallery Wellington
Saturday November 3, 3pm. Free Entry
For further information contact: email@example.com
Image: from Mark Harvey’s Productive Bodies, March 2012. Image by Gabrielle McKone