Creating space for possibility

What do you do when you live in a town that requires you to leave in order to find entertainment? A town that smugly sits on its helltown reputation.

Creatives have been drawn to the Gympie region for centuries, nurturing its unique and diverse landscapes, celebrating its natural surroundings, their inspiration and muse.

But there is change afoot. Voices are becoming louder.

Could it be that Gympie’s collective voice is yearning for greater space for possibility?

A greater respect for biodiversity – for culture – for humanity.

Local arts organisations had pioneered the way, coming and going, hosting performances, planning festivals, staging shows, opening shops and exhibitions. Yet there seems to be a residue, a mindset, that to “make it” or to have a “real” arts experience you had to head south.

And yet…

Through a series of community consultations and the merging of two existing organisations came Creative Art Gympie Region. An organisation prepared to represent the Gympie region’s creative community and help make their voices stronger.

Creative Arts Gympie Region has done a lot in the short time it has existed as a not-for-profit organisation. On a journey to celebrate our creative culture through shared ideas and partnerships, to build a stronger more resilient creative industry, the organisation has received over $75,000 in government arts funding to deliver projects, events and activate creative space.

Moving on, or in.

One of the earliest identified issues that the organisation wanted to address was a lack of venue in our region. To display artworks, showcase original live music, small theatre and live performances. Somewhere to experiment, push the boundaries, launch careers and provide the “it” that the south has, and is essentially what the arts brings to a community and society. When tenure on the ideal space was not renewed just prior to launch we sought to find another, and over six months of negotiation with council has resulted in CAGR securing a gallery and studio space. We are also working with another organisation to commence activating an events space that will see the organisation operating across two premises.

Watch this space.

After a run of amazing events during March as a last hurrah to our original space, we are now focussing on the planning and fit out of the new gallery and creative studios. We are also continuing to deliver several projects including a Creative Business Bootcamp coming soon and a one-of-a-kind collaborative arts project that includes 20 local artists and will culminate in an exhibition at Gympie Regional Gallery in November.

Creative Arts Gympie region will be holding our Annual General Meeting on Tuesday 8 June starting at 4:30pm at The Australian Institute of Country Music. All are welcome to attend and hear about future plans for the organisation.

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