New format for gallery

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New format for gallery

New format: Leongatha Art and Crafts Society president Pat Dale (right) and exhibition coordinator Margaret McPherson.

By Bert van Bedaf

THE Leongatha Gallery is likely to change its exhibition format next year.
The charter of the Leongatha Art and Crafts Society, which operates the crafts shop and art gallery space, has a clause requiring it to hold regular exhibitions, but solo or joint displays are proving to be less popular these days than in previous years.
Recent feedback has indicated that a significant number of artists would like to see a change, which would see the schedule of monthly exhibitions scrapped and a more commercial retail approach put in its place.
Margaret McPherson and society president Pat Dale are presently sharing the role of the gallery’s exhibition coordinator and are in favour of the change.
“A number of people did not like the exhibition-style atmosphere, when the gallery is given to one of two artists to exhibit,” Mrs McPherson said.
“We’re looking at running the gallery along similar lines as the Art Gallery of Inverloch. We believe this will be a good option. It hasn’t been officially decided, but it has been discussed.
The Inverloch gallery, which opened on April 4 this year, sells works from a variety of artists, including paintings, sculpture, jewellery and photographs. As items are being sold, other pieces are coming in and the owners can rotate their display regularly to ensure there is always something new for visitors to see (and buy).
Sales are healthy, going by their “bragging pole”, which shows a steadily growing number of red stickers.
A LACS foundation member, Mrs Dale will remain president until March 2011 to give the new concept the best chance of succeeding.
“I’m going to give it my best shot. There will be changes made to the display area and we’ll create more hanging space. We need to pull our weight to make the gallery survive,” Mrs Dale said.
The society will put the large display cabinet up for sale and the counter may be moved away from the rear of the gallery towards the entrance.
A distinct advantage of the new format will be that a greater variety of original art and craft works will be on regular display and available for sale.
So far, the new format will be offered to society members only. Also, artists who volunteer may be offered an incentive. Volunteer artists may be charged only 15 per cent commission on sales of their work, while artists who do not volunteer will be charged 25 per cent commission.
When Mrs McPherson steps down from the exhibition role in March, a transition will be sought to put the new format in place.
“Someone will need to take ownership of it (new format). But we believe it will be something that is worth trying. It will enable us to show a greater variety of work and create more interest,” Mrs McPherson said.
“We know it says in the charter that we need to hold exhibitions, but that was 30 years ago. We need to get more people involved and move to a new format.”
For volunteer or membership inquiries, call the gallery on 5662 5174.

Short URL: http://www.thestar.com.au/?p=98

Posted by Chris Brown on Oct 22 2009. Filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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