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  • Writer's pictureShelley Pisani

Recap of 2022

It has been quite a year at The Ideas Distillery and its not over yet.

It was a longer-term development due to the interference of a certain pandemic; but the Draft Bundaberg Regional Council Public Art Master Plan has been submitted to Council and will be out for further public feedback in early 2023.

I offered three online workshops this year in Developing Community Arts Projects, Arts Funding and Career Mapping for Creatives. It is always great to be able to support artists at a distance with advantage of technology. Thanks to those who attended and to the 5 artists who independently contracted me as a mentor this year for a variety of projects from arts and health projects, to writing children's books, contemporary performance art in a gallery setting, planning for an original music performant series and exhibition development. So proud of the outcomes all of these artists have produced and are continuing to work on.

I had the joy of returning to the Gladstone region twice this year to deliver training in applying for the Regional Arts Development Fund on behalf of Gladstone Regional Council. I love hearing about the range of innovative project ideas and connecting with creatives from this vibrant area of Queensland.

I was also in Gladstone to wrap up another long-term project impacted by COVID. Thank you to the crew at the Rotary Club of Gladstone Midday for engaging me to conduct a feasibility for projection art on the silos in the Gladstone region.

Peer Assessment is a role I love playing. This is being on panels to assess applications from the sector for funding. This year I was privileged to do this for the Regional Arts Fund in Queensland via Flying Arts Alliance and for Arts Queensland. If you haven't done it before and get the opportunity, peer assessment is a great way of looking at emerging trends in the arts, connecting with movers and shakers you may not have otherwise heard of, and even refining your own funding writing capacity.

I loved my visit to Blackbutt this year to run a workshop in developing, resourcing and managing community arts projects in collaboration with the Blackbutt Avocado Festival Committee. Thanks for the invite to spend time in your beautiful part of the world, meeting wonderful community drivers.

The Lockyer Vallery Regional Council engaged The Ideas Distillery to develop an Arts and Cultural Plan for the region. Along with sub-contractor Katie Whyte, I have visited the region and consulted online to develop a framework to support the vision of the arts sector of the region. Not quite done yet.

Images (L-R): With Katie Whyte in Gatton; speaking at the Kaleidoscope opening in Miles; site visits in Cleveland with Emma Bannerman from Redland City Council

I visited Miles a couple of times this year to curate the 2022 Western Down Regional Artists Awards exhibition "Kaleidoscope". Such a rewarding experience, especially getting to see the delight on the faces of award winners and commended artists on the night at Dogwood Crossing@Miles.

Bundaberg Regional Council recently engaged me to run a grant writing workshop for their Spark Starters participant - a great project the Council has run this year working with young singer/ songwriters to grow their career potential.

Last week I ran a Creative Consultation day for Flying Arts Alliance, working with five artists from across Queensland to support their varying visual arts practice development needs. I love it when a client tells me they have had a "light bulb" moment!

I am currently working with Bridges Health and Community Care to develop a strategic plan for their Arts, Cultural and Wellbeing Precinct at the former Fire Station in Bundaberg. Such a dream project to be working on with huge potential to grow a lived experience arts workforce in our region. Watch this space!

Redland City Council have recently engaged me to develop a framework for a project that aims to fill some vacant shops in the CBD of Cleveland with artists and arts activity as part of a pilot program. I can't wait to get further into this project in the new year.

There is so much to celebrate about regional arts in our great state.

Thank you to everyone who has been part of any of these projects, to those who have engaged my services and your ongoing support of this independent artsworker! Have a wonderful festive season with the people you love.

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