Ballina council votes on controversial gallery issue
BALLINA Shire Council has voted against changing the controversial exhibition timeline for the Northern Rivers Community gallery.
The recommendation that the eight-week exhibition time frame be continued was passed unanimously after an amendment to change the time frame to six weeks was lost eight to two.
The NRCG's original decision to move the time frame from four weeks to eight weeks in 2019 spurred a public petition demanding a reversal to the decision.
The petition on Change.org gathered more than 400 signatures and was presented to the council for consideration at the Facilities Committee meeting on July 13.
Petition co-founder Paul Button said the council's decision was disappointing given the gallery was meant to be for the gallery.
"There is no logic to it as far as I can see other than trying to push the gallery in a certain direction I don't think it was designed for," Mr Button said.
"The reaction we have is just disappointment really, disappointing in the fact council didn't understand or didn't wish to understand. I understand certain councillors were vocal in bringing it back to six weeks but the vote went the other way."
Speaking to The Northern Star previously, the gallery indicated they had favourable feedback from artists under the new time frame.
"NRCG has received positive feedback from exhibiting artists who receive more exposure as a result of the longer exhibition period."
The NRCG also indicated that Ignite Studios was available to artists wanting to exhibit at subsidised rates.
"Ignite Studios subsidised, multidisciplinary creative spaces support artists and the community in many ways through dedicated, ﬁt-for-purpose, spaces for pop up exhibitions, workshops, studios, artist residencies, projects, professional development and an immersive creative education space."
Mr Button said the decision could impact visitors and artists alike.
"What will happen I suspect is people that go to the gallery quite regularly like myself will know that it doesn't change so why go back," Mr Button said.
"When you are a community artist what you need is as many outlets for your art as possible to take them to the public if you take it down by 50 per cent, it seems the wrong measure."
To view the Facilities Committee meeting minutes, see the www.ballina.nsw.gov.au.