Fes­tive art New fes­ti­val planned for busi­nesses’ win­dows

Benalla Ensign - - Front Page - By Si­mon Rup­pert

Be­nalla is get­ting a sec­ond street art fes­ti­val with the first an­nual ‘‘Win­dow to Win­dow’’ tak­ing place on Novem­ber 30.

With the town al­ready known as the re­gional street art cap­i­tal of Aus­tralia, Win­dow to Win­dow is sure to be pop­u­lar with lo­cals and vis­i­tors alike.

Or­gan­iser Jim My­conos, who was also part of the orig­i­nal Wall to Wall com­mit­tee, said the new fes­ti­val was the brain­child of a group of lo­cal small busi­ness own­ers.

‘‘What we’re try­ing to es­tab­lish is a new an­nual fes­ti­val, which draws peo­ple to Be­nalla and sup­ports our lo­cal busi­nesses,’’ Mr My­conos said.

‘‘We have in­vited all of the busi­nesses in the CBD to do­nate a win­dow.

‘‘The theme which we’ve asked artists to fol­low is that we sim­ply want them to ex­press them­selves and the artis­tic abil­ity they have.

‘‘The only thing we’re ask­ing is that they all in­clude a Christ­mas icon some­where in their paint­ing.

‘‘We will then pro­mote the event as ‘ Come to Be­nalla to find Christ­mas’.’’

Or­gan­is­ers want to cre­ate a great at­mos­phere in the CBD and hope that in search­ing for the Christ­mas icons peo­ple will be en­cour­aged to have a look at the shops be­hind the paint­ings.

‘‘We re­ally want to pro­mote the busi­nesses in town and we hope Win­dow to Win­dow can stim­u­late the econ­omy by draw­ing peo­ple in from out of the area,’’ Mr My­conos said.

There are al­ready 35 artists paint­ing a win­dow, some will be paint­ing two as 50 busi­nesses have signed up.

There­fore or­gan­is­ers are en­cour­ag­ing lo­cal artists to get in con­tact with Mr My­conos on 0448 817 006 if they would like to take part.

A good per­cent­age of the Win­dow to Win­dow artists are at­tached to Be­nalla’s North East Ar­ti­sans (NEA).

Three of those, Cor­nelia Selover, Tim Bowtell and Chris Thorne, are signed up to take part and are look­ing for­ward to the event.

‘‘I was very lucky to be cho­sen to be an artist for Win­dow to Win­dow,’’ Ms Selover said.

‘‘I got in­volved through NEA, I’m one of the founders here at North East Ar­ti­sans, as is Tim Bowtell and we’ll both be paint­ing a win­dow.

‘‘Be­ing a part of NEA we tend to get asked to do a lot of things and we love to get in­volved when we can and sup­port the town in any way pos­si­ble.’’

Mr Bowtell said hav­ing a sec­ond street art fes­ti­val showed how strong Be­nalla’s art com­mu­nity was.

‘‘We’ve got 45 artists just con­nected to NEA alone, so it hasn’t been dif­fi­cult sourc­ing peo­ple who would like to paint one of the win­dows,’’ Mr Bowtell said.

‘‘Win­dow to Win­dow will be a bit dif­fer­ent to Wall to Wall as the art is slightly more tem­po­rary.

‘‘It’s up to the shop owner how long it will stay, up. They can leave it up for a month or take it off the next day, it is up to them.’’

Mr Thorne said that the pub­lic would be en­cour­aged to in­ter­act with the artists and he was look­ing for­ward to meet­ing vis­i­tors.

‘‘We are en­cour­ag­ing the com­mu­nity to come down and ac­tu­ally talk with the artists to see what we’re do­ing and what the story is be­hind the art,’’ Mr Thorne said.

‘‘The win­dows will be painted mainly around Bridge St, Car­rier St and Nunn St.

‘‘We’re try­ing to keep it cen­tral, and all the paint­ing will hap­pen on Novem­ber 30.

‘‘We start at 11 am and we need to be fin­ished by 6 pm.’’

As the artists fin­ish up fes­tiv­i­ties will move down to the Mu­ral where a com­mu­nity event will be held.

That event will in­clude live mu­sic, a sausage siz­zle and or­gan­is­ers are in talks with a lo­cal win­ery to sup­ply drinks.

For more in­for­ma­tion and up­dates, visit Win­dow to Win­dow on Face­book.

Ex­cited: Win­dow to Win­dow artists Chris Thorne, Cor­nelia Selover and Tim Bowtell.

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