THE township of Riversdale is “buzzing” in anticipation of this month’s Mixed Media Arts Exhibition.
Riversdale Arts president Christine O’Connor said this year’s event commemorated a special anniversary – the organisation’s 45th exhibition.
O’Connor said Riversdale Arts started as a way to provide art and drama for people in the community in the 1970s.
The first year included two exhibitions, with one held annually ever since.
One of the first classes the group had was a still life of green apples, she said.
“They had so many people at the class and painting the still life they decided to have an exhibition.”
As a homage to this, members had been invited to create a still life featuring green apples in whatever medium they wanted for the exhibition this year, she said.
This resulted in items from paintings to cushions and quilts.
“It’s bringing back the green apples again. Older members all remember the still life with green apples.”
Along with showcasing a variety of artwork from artists throughout New Zealand, the exhibition also featured an edible artistry installation, an outdoor art installation on the lawn featuring an extreme cake and dancing girls, and a floral installation at the entrance to the community centre, O’Connor said.
“It’s always nice to put a different spin on things and have something different.
“For me being the president and an artist, I like the art exhibition to be more than just an exhibition, to be a whole experience. From the time you arrive in town there’s something going on.”
Seven Invercargill artists had been named as finalists of the emerging artist award – Cilla Tomlinson, Fern McAulay, Gemma Baldock, Jorden Yaxley, Molly Batt, Siobhan Barnard and Logan Dennis – along with Ruth Crouchley, of Te Anau, and Marion Santos and Mika Turnbull, of Queenstown.
Last year’s winner, Kasey Leonard, of Invercargill, had also been invited back to the exhibition this year.
Classes include Getting Prolific – Painting, with Peter Cleverley; Beginner’s guide to watercolour, with Crosbie Grieve; Bend, knot and braze black wire, with Annie Bourque; Mosaics in Glass, with Jasmine Keir; and En Plein air – Out in the wilds, with Janet de Wagt.
The classes held in conjunction with Southland Education, and were already almost full, O’Connor said.
A bus to the exhibition from Invercargill on Saturday, July 21, had also been organised through Southland Education.
People came to the exhibition from throughout Southland and Otago, she said.
“The town is just buzzing with activities for 10 days.
“People have been coming for years and years. It’s not necessarily to buy something. It’s just for the whole experience of the fact that we have art from all around New Zealand that you don’t normally get to see all in one place.”
There would be something for everyone included in the exhibition, including a cash and carry gift shop, cafe and ticketed events, she said.
The exhibition will be open from July 21-29 at the Riversdale Community Centre. General admission $8. For more information go to the Riversdale Arts Facebook page.