ACT News

Sun, swing and shipping containers down at Art Not Apart festival fosters the early autumn spirit

Along the shoreline of Lake Burley Griffin on Saturday, a fight using oars and stop signs took place beside a giant fish constructed from pool floaties, just a few metres from a shipping container village

Further down the shoreline, Canberra couples swing-danced to 1920s jazz tunes. "Welcome to the first New Acton beach party," an announcer said.

Colour on show at the Art Not Apart festival in New Action.
Colour on show at the Art Not Apart festival in New Action. Photo: Matt Bedford

The ACT's second Art Not Apart festival kicked off across the city on Saturday with events from 1pm in New Acton until almost midnight at the new Westside district.

Families and young couples strolled the shoreline of Lake Burley Griffin taking in the sights and sounds.

Melba-resident Kate Stewart, who took her daughter to play on the swings at the Westside shipping container village, said the city she'd live in her whole life was just starting a new era.

"It's an opportunity to get the people of Canberra out of the house and appreciating a bit of art," she said. "It's the start of something. It'll be good to see it evolve.

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"I think it's just a taste of what's to come as they continue to do the City to the Lake. It's a good thing - till now this area has been relatively unused."

Artist Simon Ramsey was tying packing tape into tiny fish to place on his artwork Plastic Gyre, as two musicians a hundred feet away played music on a violin and half a cello. "This is fantastic," he said. "The whole thing is very lovely."

Stomping Grounds Collective container owner Daniel Moscaritolo, whose company was part of the group which put together the Westside container village, said they had chosen the Art Not Apart festival to be the official opening of their site.

"Obviously the Canberra culture scene has been growing lately, particularly in hospitality, [and] these have been done and tested around the world... I think it's the start of something new for Canberra and I hope there'll be lots more of these," he said.