It is interesting that whenever something ‘new’ comes along we are quick to make comparisons. Its hard not to. We also readily interpret the new as yet another ‘overnight success’. I’ve read several articles drawing various comparisons between the new Moonah Arts Centre (MAC) and other artspaces and organisations about the place, and that’s OK, but I kind of like the expression, ‘it is what it is’, because in my experience that is so often the case. The new MAC is definitely one of those places that is what it is.
So what is it?
MAC is Moonah’s Old New Artspace. Its been around the block once or twice and has established itself as a part of the northern suburbs on a number of levels. Why? Because it is a council run space that has evolved with the people for the people for well over 20 years. Old MAC’s space goes back even further, a gift to the community by the then EZ company in the 1920s, one of two halls in fact, the twin being demolished in the 1960s. The remaining building was for some years the local library, a fact that wouldn’t be lost on MAC’s first Arts & Cultural Development Officer.
The new MAC is certainly new, in fact it is state of the art in every way. It is a purpose built artspace, something surprisingly rare in the artworld today. But before I make any comparisons, before I claim that it is a premium space among Hobart’s many and varied artspaces, let’s look again at what it is. It still is a council run space that will continue to evolve with the people and for the people, because that’s what MAC does. The new building itself is no mere architectural wonderspace, it is the result of many months of community consultation. The architects have listened and responded well.
MAC is not an art institution in the traditional sense. It doesn’t collect, conserve and research in an institutional manner. But it will continue to bring local product to local audiences across a multi-arts platform, it will continue to offer affordable workshops for local people to develop their creativity, and it will continue to be a melting pot for the diverse people of the city. For it is the social fabric and cultural tapestry of the City of Glenorchy that is to be valued above any building or institution. Yet, in the case of the new MAC, it is wonderful to witness a building and organisation that is so decidedly dedicated to the people of this city.
Congratulations to all the people that made this happen.
arts@work is the industry development unit of Arts Tasmania. Our brief is to increase the capacity of the arts sector and the viability of a career in the arts.
We do this through strategic initiatives and a range of programs including the Tasmanian Government’s Art Site Scheme, a professional development program, the Corporate Art Scheme and projects that support national and international export.
We also provide studio and exhibition space through our 146 arts programs.
arts@work also distributes arts-e newsbyte, our fortnightly e-newsletter, profiling the latest state, national and international arts opportunities.
Kickstart Arts (KSA) is an independent arts company based in Hobart. We work statewide in cross-sectoral partnerships to produce inclusive, innovative multi-arts projects in order to develop community capacity and improve the health and wellbeing of Tasmanians.
Vision: A healthy, confident and creative Tasmania.
Mission: Create bold and challenging art in and with communities to improve the health and wellbeing of Tasmanians
Moonah Arts Centre
The Moonah Arts Centre is Glenorchy’s community arts centre and is part of Glenorchy City Council’s Arts & Cultural Development Section. The Moonah Arts Centre is a focus for arts and cultural activity in Glenorchy City, aiming to provide opportunities for the enjoyment, appreciation and discovery of the arts and culture in our local community.
Join an activity, see an exhibition, concert, or learn a new skill at one of the many workshops or perhaps even exhibit your own work. The Moonah Arts Centre has an opportunity for everyone to come and be part of its diverse and exciting program of activities.
Contemporary Art Spaces Tasmania
CAST, standing for Contemporary Art Spaces Tasmania, is a not for profit membership-based organisation dedicated to supporting and developing professional contemporary art since 1992. CAST is an active participant in the creative community, providing opportunities for artists and arts professionals via an annual program of high quality exhibitions, off-site projects, professional development initiatives, publications and the provision of studios.
CAST occupies a lead role in the contemporary culture of Tasmania and is respected for its experience and professionalism in the contemporary visual arts sector in Australia. It is a member of the Contemporary Art Organisations national network and is assisted by the Australia Council, Arts Tasmania and through the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy.
Arts Tasmania is the government agency responsible for policy and planning for arts and culture in Tasmania. It is part of the Department of Economic Development, Tourism and the Arts.
Arts Tasmania encompasses both the departmental functions of the state arts agency and secretariat functions for theTasmanian Arts Advisory Board in its peer assessment and policy development roles.
Our vision is for a robust, diverse, vibrant arts sector in Tasmania which is valued by Tasmanians and which is nationally and internationally recognised. There is more information about our vision and its implementation in the Arts Tasmania Vision Statement.
One of Arts Tasmania’s core responsibilities each year is to administer grants and loans distributed under the Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board Act 1975.
The Australia Council for the Arts is the Australian Government’s arts funding and advisory body. We support Australia’s arts through funding, strengthening and developing the arts sector.
We collaborate to build new audiences, foster philanthropic support and deepen our understanding of the arts through research.
Each year, we deliver more than $160 million in funding for arts organisations and individual artists across the country.