Gallery pitch packed
A HUGE turnout of art lovers for the launch of the campaign to get funding for a new gallery demonstrated the community's support, director Brett Adlington said.
"I knew it would be a big day but it was much bigger than I anticipated and ended up being beyond my wildest expectations," he said.
"A lot of people went away during the panel discussion because they couldn't fit into that back gallery space and I guess again that's an illustration of the building that we're in.''
The pledge launch coincided with the launch of Not Quite Square, a new exhibition of unique owner-built houses on the Northern Rivers.
"Both the exhibition and the pledge were fantastically supported - we've already received quite a bit of money and there was one anonymous pledge of $50,000, so yes, that was a really good start," Mr Adlington said.
"Things have changed a lot with this campaign. Having Arts Northern Rivers possibly moving into the same building with us has really changed things, shifted the goal posts. It will really show the solid regional focus that we have."
Mr Adlington said an article in Saturday's Australian newspaper about the exhibition illustrated the wide appeal of arts from the Northern Rivers.
"It shows how our reach is not just Lismore and local, we can be doing national stuff and we are," he said.
"I think people locally don't necessarily pick up on what we are, and it's not just us. I was talking to Julian Louis from NORPA about the recognition that we get outside the region.
"We talk to people in places all across the country and our programs are highly recognised and I think that article in The Australian is a perfect illustration of that - we are able to communicate local stories for a national audience.
"I guess part of this campaign is really looking at people to put their hands up and say, yes, we support the gallery and the plans for relocation and it's not necessarily about money, it's also about the number of people involved.
"So even if people are able to contribute just five dollars, that's a fantastic effort - if we can say x amount of people have supported this campaign then that's really the figure that we're going to be talking about."