By Sanae Murray
(Karamea Pop-Up Gallery Curator)
The Pop-up Gallery exhibition at the old Karamea Hardware building was held on March 25, 26 and 27 and opened with live music performances by “The Scissors” Steve Miller, Seth Doherty, Dave Guppy, and DJ Donna Chambers.
On short notice, a fantastic team of volunteers emerged from the community to prepare the gallery and display the art and craft of 18 local artists. Most artworks had never been exhibited before, and the quality of the work on display completely wowed locals and visitors to the area. The show included a progressive painting started by Karamea Area School students Jade, Eliza and Fern and added to over the weekend by a raft of aspiring artists, all of whom collaborated to produce a snapshot of Karamea life on canvas. A stone-painting corner also proved popular with kids and adults alike.
One hundred and forty people visited the gallery over the weekend, and a holidaymaker from Christchurch purchased one of Svetlana Mickell’s paintings. Several of Tim Harrop’s wooden bowls also sold, along with a flax basket by Hanne Nielsen, a painting by Laura Sonneveldt and a Stewart Miller sculpture.
Exhibition patrons were very complimentary about the quality of the artworks on display, and exclamations similar to, “This is amazing” and “I didn’t know so-and-so is such a great artist!” were heard repeatedly throughout the exhibition. The Karamea Pop-up Gallery is a fantastic opportunity for everyone to express their creative passion and introduce their artistic side to the community.
The next Pop-Up Gallery exhibition with a theme of “Spice” is set for Easter weekend on April 16 & 17, when there will be more visitors to the area and an excellent opportunity for local artists to reach more people. There will also be winter shows on May 14 & 15, June 25 & 26 and July 9 & 10, and a Spring show on August 13 & 14.
Thank you to Jason and Juliette James from the Karamea 4-Square for their generosity in providing the venue, Jessie Creedmore & Liz Kerslake for their mentoring and incredible support, and Manatū Taonga and Buller REAP for making the project possible by providing funding for the show.
Finally, a BIG thank you to all the volunteers who helped make the first exhibition such a great success and to the artists who exhibited their work and showcased the depth of creative talent in our community.