This weekend saw the first street art market for Hamilton called ‘Art on Barton’
This event was designed to get local artists together and provide a venue for them to show their work with other artists and be able to share and sell their artwork themselves.
Although the weather was forecast to be severe with thunder storms we still went ahead with the event. Even though it did rain, it wasn’t as bad as expected, the first half of the day being fairly dry. I think the general spirit of the event got everyone going and nothing could make them disheartened. There were many comments from other artists how they were enjoying just being a part of the local scene and having the chance to meet other artists, as working home in their studios is so isolating they often don’t get that opportunity.
The best thing about such events is that other artistic genres can be involved also, like musicians busking is both ideal for the general feel of such an event but also for the buskers in that the audience is larger than usual and they tend to be more artistically inclined and like to hear new stuff so the buskers often make more money.
We had a face painter at this last event and her skills were much higher than your average Mums helping out at school fetes sort of thing so it was value for money for the parents and great PR for the painter in that her clients were literally wearing her art on their faces for everyone to see, what better advertising can you get?
There’s scope for so much more and I think this art market will lead to great things both for the arts community and Hamilton itself.
Part of the plan for Art on Barton was to encourage shoppers to return to the CBD as shopping centres are springing up outside the main centre and were drawing a lot of the shoppers away.
Hamilton desperately needs more art events like this to encourage artists to bond and create a more cohesive arts society that we can be proud of and make us much more visible to both the general public and artists who are new to the area and want to share in an arts community. It also means we have another draw-card for tourists and locals as something to do while in Hamilton. Yes we have the V8s and the Balloons over Waikato along with other types of markets and various one off events but regular monthly markets for quality art always interest people in general and with several coffee shops in the street, it’s a chance to sit down have some lunch and enjoy the atmosphere as well as take home some art for your home or office.
There are other markets in Hamilton but generally they cater for other things like food and general crafts, brik-a-brak and such things as farmers markets for fresh produce.
Ree Varcoe from Hamilton Central who organised the event is looking at regular art markets the next one being the 6th May 2011 which everyone is keen to be a part of and with so many other artists popping up on Saturday who didn’t know about the event and wanted to join in, I think future ones will be bigger and brighter and well worth the effort of a visit if you are in town or even just passing through Hamilton.
Any enquires for future events please get in touch with Hamilton Central email@example.com