The Art for Everyone programme launched in November 2020, in response to Covid-19. Research shows that the mere act of viewing art reduces stress and reduces blood pressure. By activating unused or unloved spaces, we create much needed exhibition space for artists and make art available to everyone.
The programme has operated across 10 business spaces and this involves negotiating contracts with the business owner, undertaking workplace health & safety assessments, auditing the space for installation requirements as well as Covid requirements, negotiating artist terms, promotion of the artist to the business – before any exhibition can take place. There is also negotiation with artists, and arts organisations throughout the process of preparing, delivering and deinstalling exhibitions. Scheduling and delivering curation, developing and organising all marketing including media liaison, as well as organising supporting events such as exhibition opening.
The programme provides a mixture of corporate and hospitality spaces, both large and small. The Creative Manaaki Gallery inside Kiwibank Paraparaumu provides the largest space whilst the NZ Sotheby’s International Wellington office in Raumati Village is one of the smallest. In keeping with our founding philosphy, ma mahi tahi ka ora ai te iwi, by working together we move forward, we have partnered with creative organisations and groups to deliver ground-breaking exhibitions for the district. Collaborations with the Holtom’s Art Studios, NZ Institute of Professional Photographers Wellington, Māoriland Toi Matarau Gallery, Tutere Collaborative, Te Ara Korowai, Kapiti Art Studio have added value to the wider creative community. Events such as 2021 NZ Music Month, the 2021 Matariki Lighting the Beacons Festival and 2021 International Women’s Day have been commemorated in this space. Thanks to the generosity of artists, we raised over $1,000 for the Kāpiti Women’s Centre in 2021.
The Art for Everyone programme also delivers workforce development opportunities with guest curators, art teachers and students, and emerging artists participating in the programme. Conversely, business owners and staff have a growing appreciation for the creative skills and management and technical skills required to stage an exhibition.
Programme as at June 2022:
‘Exhibiting artists have acquired their mātauranga Māori knowledge over many years. For many, this will be a first, exhibiting in Paraparaumu’ said Maakarita Paku, Kaitiaki Toi of Māoriland Toi Matarau Gallery.
‘It was heartbreaking not being able to show my work in London and to now have this opportunity to see it exhibited in Paraparaumu is a cathartic experience’ said Hamish MaCaulay. Some of Hamish’s artworks in this exhibition were subsequently purchased by Te Papa Tongarewa for the national art collection.