JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

The art of inclusion


Kristie Broadhead

NewActon's Art Not Apart fesitval has tripled in size since its debut six months ago.

NewActon's Art Not Apart fesitval has tripled in size since its debut six months ago.

From a periphery on the outskirts of Canberra’s CBD to a lively hub of eclectic arts, NewActon is rapidly becoming an artists’ paradise; and the Art Not Apart Festival is playing a pivotal role in this evolution.

As the brainchild of Molonglo Group events manager and cultural co-ordinator David Caffrey, Art Not Apart was created to be a bustling event based on diversity.

Caffrey and his team aimed to create a space that emphasised, rather than ignored, the connections between different perspectives.

“We became excited by an event that ignores the typical marketing approaches of ‘define a demographic and give them what they want’,” Caffrey said.

“A philosophy degree taught me this approach is fragmenting society.  Polarised events and narrow products are disconnecting us from each other and ourselves.

 “I guess the festival is using art to present the richness of life. We wanted to present Canberrans well. Art Not Apart means connection and this is shown through well-presented, quality art.”

The event has been keenly received by the public and has tripled in size over a six-month period.

The third instalment of the festival will take place on Saturday, March 16.

 Far from resting on the laurels of previous successes, Caffrey and his team have expanded on the strengths of the last Art Not Apart festival.

The festival will feature live art making, roving performers, many different types of artists, a short film festival and about 170 live performers.

New additions include a beautifully-presented solo exhibition of Martin Ollman’s photography, a conversion of Canberra’s iconic April’s Caravan into a kitsch 1960s home and a painter interpreting music on stage. A $1000 busking competition is sure to attract high-quality local musicians.

“We had a big call for artists and now those people are preparing for the event – come and discover them,” Caffrey said.

“Quality art is like an existential compass.  Nietzsche believed the west is homeless, but creating an artistic culture is to create a sense of home.  Support our arts scene and discover new perspectives.  It’s good for you and helps develop our city,” he said.

Caffrey believes the Art Not Apart Festival can expand into the future, with the NewActon precinct providing the perfect setting for further development of an event he hopes will grow to be intrinsically linked with Canberra – and Canberra alone. 

“If there’s anything we hope to achieve in the future it’s to show our city to have its own exciting culture, not a borrowed identity from Melbourne or elsewhere – this event is not ‘oh so Melbourne’, Melbourne doesn’t have one of these festivals,” he said.

“We are here – let’s find meaning in this statement.”

ART NOT APART: NewActon Precinct - Saturday March 16, 2013.

Related Coverage

Capon style

Whether travelling the world or launching an out-of-this-world collection, eccentric fashion designer Anthony Capon is quashing social prejudices and living out his destiny, marching to his own beat.

Stylistic combination

Torn between competing creative interests Peta Rudd stepped away from her passions before discovering a job that could combine them all in Canberra.

Going gluten free in Canberra

With many Canberra restaurants happy to accommodate a variety of dietary requirements, a gluten-free diet doesn’t have to restrict your dining experience.

Boutique City

Bigger isn’t always better, especially when it comes to looking for personalised service. Emma Kelly finds some smaller Canberra businesses that specialise in helping the individual.

Arena’s flame still burns brightly

Tina Arena is back to wow Canberra audiences for the first time in almost a decade.

Thursday’s Tale

A tale inspired by a real survivor of a terrorist attack, Thursday is a powerfully emotional play that aims to connect with the audience on a personal level.

Fashion capsule

Fashion has been at the heart of human creative expression for centuries.

A guide to Lonsdale Street Traders

Explore a collection of stores offering one-of-a-kind products, distinctive designs and unique services where you can expect the unexpected.

Mixing it up

Learning on the run and not worrying about what people think has put blogger Jiawa Liu on the road to achieving some lofty goals.

Related Coverage

HuffPost Australia

Follow Us

Featured advertisers

Special offers

Credit card, savings and loan rates by Mozo