SummaryTauranga is a new city. It is growing fast and there is the possibility that we may be seeing the emergence of an art precinct in our CBD. Main Body
In the Wharf Street area we have Tauranga Art Gallery, Creative Tauranga Community Gallery, B.A. Reader bookstore for those keen on the literary arts and a number of cafes where the art community can meet. Occasionally we see the Civic Centre space opposite the council building’s entrance used for exhibitions too.
Sadly, Wharf Street has lost the R.O.W. Gallery and the Orange Zephyr Cafe.
‘Yanomami’ by Ana Lucia Mendina.
The latter was a wonderful place where musicians, writers, poets, artists and all like-minded people could get together to share ideas and enjoy each others’ company.
I’m hoping that the Sunrise Cafe on Wharf Street will become a new feature as a possible Tauranga art precinct takes shape.
Owners Barbara and John Sternberg are inviting artists to exhibit work in their cafe with the aim of supporting the visual arts in Tauranga and providing a space where the art community can meet. This could be particularly helpful to emerging artists.
It is hoped to have exhibitions of eye-catching art by our local artists in the cafe and that the art community will get behind the idea. Artists Ana Mendina and Nick Eggleston have expressed interest in exhibiting some time in the future. These could be solo or group exhibitions each lasting 3-4 weeks and the intention is to work closely with the artists to exhibit their work and to boldly display the artists’ details in the cafe.
‘Mauao Moo Moo’ by Nick Eggleston.
A window blackboard will announce each new exhibition and exhibiting artist/artists will be given the opportunity to help with the wording and design on this.
Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty is home to many talented artists and creative people. Collectively they can enrich all of our lives and add much to the cultural and economic health of our increasingly diverse city.
Pete Morris is an occasional painter and an art lover. He is a freelance writer with a particular interest in promoting the visual arts in Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty.