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Street View

Mike & Joan Street and Karen Craig

MIKE. Our local art galleries, after being embroiled in the problems of recent weeks, are now beginning  to cautiously reveal their interiors to the public. First off the mark was the Sarjeant Gallery,  though visitor numbers will be limited to twenty at a time, with other Covid restrictions also in place. Julia Morison’s  ‘Head (case)‘ and Peter Hawkesby’s  ‘Tender Brick ’were originally slated to end late this month but may be extended. ‘Sleeping Near The River ‘ by Marie Shannon and ‘On the Move ‘  from the permanent collection are both scheduled to run until mid- November. More information may be found on the Sarjeant website and in AWA Event Guide's October edition.

‘Diverse Landscapes ‘ opened last week at the A Gallery. This exhibition consists of works in different media – photographs, paintings, drawings, sculptures - all by a number of local well-known artists. The exhibition may also be viewed on-line on the website:

At Space Gallery, there is an opening, on September 22nd, of three new exhibitions. These events are always popular, so, in accordance with Level Two demands of no more than 50 people at a function, Sarah Williams has decided to hold two sessions next Wednesday, 5:00 – 6:00pm and 6:30 – 7:30pm. Registration is essential at The ‘Pop-up Gallery` will contain the creations of Leigh Anderton-Hall, entitled ‘What is Said of Hope’. This exhibition consists of intriguing glass works with equally intriguing quotes to challenge the viewer. Works by Adele Dubarry, entitled `Fresh Air`,  will feature in Gallery 1, while Gallery 2 wil display ‘Lost for Words ‘, to which nine female artists have contributed. This latter was planned as a fringe event referencing the Whanganui Literary Festival , where written words provide inspiration for the visual element.

These three galleries are managing to offer to us a varied and exciting set of works to allow us to stay involved with local visual art and, no doubt, others will follow soon.

Sadly, another large setback to our cultural calendar is the postponement of the Whanganui Literary Festival until next February. I am pleased to announce the confirmation of another event to take place then along with the postponed Literary Festival. ‘Artists Who Write ‘, will consist of  readings from the written words of local artists such as Edith Collier, Joanna Paul and Ted Lewis. I am involved with the event and have enjoyed reading the war experiences of local artist Ted Lewis in preparation. [Ed: February will also see the latest Shakespeare-in-the-Park-Whanganui production of 'The Merry Wives of Windsor' at the Bason Botanic Gardens.]

Keep your eyes open for upcoming theatrical works also. Repertory Theatre are still hoping to present their play 'Direct Hit', postponed due to lockdown, sometime in October. A major disappointment for Whanganui has been the postponement, until next year, of Amdram`s ambitious undertaking of `Phantom of the Opera`. Director Graham Dack and Musical Director Lynn Whiteside have already put in a great deal of work with their marvellous team and will continue with rehearsals, keeping numbers to the correct level for each gathering. Amdram are beginning next Thursday to prepare their` Vicar of Dibley, Part Two`, which will follow on from the great success of last year`s Part One and is due for performance November/December. (Joan has just suggested that we hide our natural modesty and say that we shall be reprising our roles in `Vicar of Dibley`, as the same cast from last year`s production are only too eager to take part in the fun again.)

For information on upcoming theatre performances and exhibition dates, October's AWA Event Guide will be published and distributed throughout the city and on-line.