Chance to share art with community

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A Dunedin art studio’s annual exhibition is a good opportunity for artists to share their work with the wider community, its director says.

This year’s Artsenta exhibition will be artist Hamish Cormack’s third.

His first exhibition was a “huge success” and he almost sold out of his ceramics.

He enjoyed the hands-on process of making ceramics, so to sell anything was a bonus, he said.

This year he will display his sculpture Plague Doctor which he made using a ceramic mask, black sheet and light-up eyes.

Other works on display will include paintings, drawings, prints and mosaics.

Some people made things specifically for the exhibition, while others were “just making work and [it] comes along at the right time”, Artsenta director Paul Smith said.

“Those who have been here a bit longer do tend to build up to it and [make] work specifically for it.”

People who used the space were constantly making art, which was an important philosophy for the organisation.

“Everyone here is an artist.”

The exhibition was a “wonderful opportunity” to share work with a wider audience.

For the artists, it was validating to have members of the public like and buy their work, although the exhibition was more about the creative process rather than selling.

“The sharing is the most important thing.”

Minister of Health David Clark will be at the studio tomorrow to officially open the exhibition and celebrate the launch of a poetry book, A Scattering of Words, which was created by the writing group.

Mr Smith said the work in the book was very diverse, and it was an honour to have Dr Clark visit the studio.

It was a “good opportunity to show him the work that is being done at a really grassroots level”.

Artsenta is a shared arts studio for people in the mental health community.