The City Gallery is in the process of implementing an expansion plan that it began investigating last year. Planning was paused amid discussions with Anderson Park as to whether a partnership between the two organisations was possible. City Gallery was recently informed that the current site – the Public Trust Office building was not deemed feasible for the storage of the Anderson Park collection and therefore the Anderson Park Committee would be pursuing other options. The City Gallery is now forging on with its expansion and hopes there will be a time in the future where the two groups will be able to work together. City Gallery has recently signed the lease to occupy the other side of the Public Trust building which it intends to convert into much needed exhibition, studio and workshop space. City Gallery (and the Southland Art Society) have been successfully operating a gallery for long enough to drive a greater commitment to the provision of a public art gallery in the inner city.
The expansion, brings with it more work for what is a small committee, including renovations and the development of a funding plan to ensure the gallery reaches its goals in terms of new spaces being able to host a broader range of exhibitions including touring exhibitions in 2017. The Gallery also intends to provide space for more community exhibitions and studio space for working artists (some of which is already spoken for). In the meantime the Gallery also has ambitious plans regarding its programming with three touring exhibitions and a number of workshops scheduled for the 2016 year. Members and visitors will notice the changes over the next 6 months with the implementation of new policies and procedures to ensure new gallery spaces meet the preventative conservation expectations of a public gallery environment.
The City Gallery aims to bring artists and audiences together and this is evident in its newly developed Corporate Membership drive which invites businesses to support the Gallery’s services to the community in exchange for a host of benefits including a framed limited edition print by a well-known New Zealand artist (on an annual basis). Artists, locally and nationally will be approached to take part in the scheme. One of the artists for 2016 is Sam Mitchell who has provided a choice of three works for perspective corporate members to choose from. There will be a limited run of thirty prints in total. Sam Mitchell currently lives and works in Auckland and was the William Hodges Fellow spending six months in Southland in 2014. Examples of her recent work can be viewed at www.melanierogergallery.com.
The City Gallery is a working gallery and therefore is always seeking and grateful for any voluntary support from members of the community. If you are interested in the arts and have skills you could contribute to assist in the growth and development of Invercargill’s City Gallery we would love to hear from you. We currently have a number of sub-committees operating to complete work in numerous areas so there are a variety of tasks volunteers can undertake to help ensure the long-term success of the organisation. If you are interested in proposing an exhibition, workshop or are looking for central, affordable studio space or in demonstrating your support for the arts in Invercargill through Corporate Membership please contact Hope Wilson at firstname.lastname@example.org or pop in and see us at 28 Don St.
Public Programmes Manager
Southland Art Society Committee