A collage of images of artists at Room 5, Ōtautahi Creative Spaces

LIFE CHANGING: “My mental health was suffering severely but with this process, and the support of Ōtautahi Creative Spaces and the people who work here, I’m creating. Not just on canvas but in my world and my daily life. It’s a very powerful way of healing.” These are the words of Narelle, a former counsellor, who says the Christchurch earthquakes “deconstructed” her life. Read more about Ōtautahi Creative Spaces.

Art a message of healing for Anita Mary

18 October 2016
Anita Mary signs copies of her bookAuckland artist and writer Anita Mary loves punk music and her life could be a lyric from a song by one of her favourite bands. Eighteen schools, violence, abuse, homelessness, confusion, depression, drugs and prostitution marked Anita Mary’s days for many years until she found God, the arts and a pathway to redemption. These are the subjects of Anita Mary’s first book Blood On The Mirror, a personal account of a troubled life but also of creative expression and strength. Read more about Anita Mary

Celebrating Mental Health Awareness Week

6 October 2016
Book cover of Blood On The MirrorToi Ora Live Art Trust in Auckland will celebrate the Mental Health Awareness Week from 10 to 16 October with a range of activities, including the launch of a book by artist and writer Anita Mary and a solo exhibition by artist Andrew Blythe. Anita Mary's first book, Blood On The Mirror, tells the story of her troubled past, and how she found her place through the arts and her faith in God. Read more

Arts benefit Christchurch Men’s Prison

27 September 2016
A prisoner in the Youth Unit paints words of hopeHope, family, respect, trust and truth are among the words painted on the walls of Christchurch Men’s Prison by prisoners in the Youth Unit taking part in a new art programme. Delivered by tertiary provider SkillWise through its creative space, The White Room, It’s one of a number of art activities or programmes across the whole prison, including art therapy in the Special Treatment Unit Rehabilitation Programme and the Drug Treatment Unit. Read more

Prisoners value words and writing

23 September 2016
Associate Professor Tracey McIntoshMany prisoners place high value on words and writing, thanks in part to the influence of hip hop, rap artists and poets, says Tracey McIntosh, who has been volunteering at Auckland Region Women’s Corrections Facility for the past nine years. “Teaching creative writing came from working with these young women doing NCEA and encouraging them to write through their own experiences.Creative writing is the output but actually, it’s about being human together, talking and reflecting, and learning together." Read more

Tales from the Amy Street short films

23 September 2016
A still from Topsy and DaveA collection of eight short films called Amy Street opens a window into the lives of nine residents of The Supported Life Style Hauraki Trust, and their heart-warming stories. Topsy and Dave, a story about two of the residents getting married, will screen in the “Highlights” and “Heartstrings” sessions of the Show Me Shorts Film Festival screening around New Zealand from 1 October. Read more

Overview of New Zealand arts and disability

9 September 2016
Rodney_Bell1_smPerformance artist Rodney Bell and Claire Noble, Community Development Co-ordinator at Arts Access Aotearoa, will present an overview of arts, inclusion and disability in New Zealand at the Arts Activated Conference in Sydney on 20 and 21 September.  Entitled In Aotearoa: Access, Artists and Cultural Diversity, the presentation will highlight successful collaborations and accessibility initiatives from Arts Access Aotearoa’s perspective.  Rodney will share his international performance experience and insights into creating his new work. Read more

Recognition beyond words

9 September 2016
Susan Te Kahurangi King untitled (detail), 1965 Photo: Andrew Edlin GalleryThe undoubted hit of the 2014 New York Outsider Art Fair in 2014, according to Roberta Smith of the New York Times, were drawings by Susan Te Kahurangi King of Auckland. A book of monographs of her work will be launched at the New York Art Book Fair this month in time for her third New York show at the Andrew Edlin Gallery. And yet Susan King is still relatively unknown in New Zealand. She has never been to art school, and yet she is destined to become one of the most significant New Zealand artists ever. Read more

Art reaches out to Cannons Creek

1 September 2016
Maddy Marshall, Jonah Davis and Blaine Bethan-Taape in front of the mural they helped createPride, confidence, team work, focus and escape are some of the benefits three Porirua students describe when asked about the weekly art sessions run by Chris Barrand, an artist and art tutor at Pablos Art Studios in Wellington. Maddy Marshall, 15, Jonah Davis, 16 and Blaine Bethan-Taape, 14, attend the Porirua Alternative School in Cannons Creek. Paintings and stencil art add colour to the school walls while murals painted on concrete walls brighten the outdoor environment. Read more



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