Artists Cass Samms (left) and Tracy Pateman (right) chat with exhibition curator Rochelle Summerfield (centre) as they set up their exhibition at the plunge pop up display in conjunction with Arts Northern Rivers.
Artists Cass Samms (left) and Tracy Pateman (right) chat with exhibition curator Rochelle Summerfield (centre) as they set up their exhibition at the plunge pop up display in conjunction with Arts Northern Rivers. Adam Hourigan

Cultural festival hub features exhibitions and workshops

THE plunge festival launched on Saturday night with an explosion of colourful art, sculpture and music at a Pop Up Hub in the Yamba Industrial Estate.

Arts Northern Rivers has partnered with plunge festival 2016 for the Pop Up Hub that will house exhibitions, a program of workshops and host an artist in residence for the duration of the festival.

Making use of an empty warehouse in an underutilised section of the Yamba Industrial Estate, the focal point of the Pop Up Hub will be an all female exhibition, This is She, curated by Clarence artist Rochelle Summerfield.

"It's a contemporary story of our rich cultural legacy expressed through a diversity of media by women as only the arts can tell", she said.

Artist Cass Samms sets up some of her sculptural work as part of the Clarence Women exhibition curated by Rochelle Sumerfield at the plunge pop up in conjunction with Art Northernrivers.
Artist Cass Samms sets up some of her sculptural work as part of the Clarence Women exhibition curated by Rochelle Sumerfield at the plunge pop up in conjunction with Art Northernrivers. Adam Hourigan

Summerfield's own work explores ideas on female experience and identity in the Australian landscape and was commissioned by Arts Northern Rivers to curate part of the Pop Up. She is taking the opportunity to celebrate women artists and the region by selecting works that reflect the artists' own connection to the landscape, its history and lifestyle. The exhibition will display the rich diversity of each artists' practice and how they respond to their environment.

Cass Samms shows two sculptural works made of copper, steel and stainless steel and reflect her practice of how humans relate to natural landscape.

Frances Belle Parker will show beautifully stitched fine linen work that tells of her Indigenous family history that is bound to the Yaegl landscape and the river that runs through it.

Artist Tracy Pateman's sculptural work tells a classical Greek tale of the underworld set in the rolling hills of the Clarence Valley engraved in copper and silver. These more tactile works are balanced by delicate charcoal drawings by Sue Harris and Pat Jenkins, whose works are a reflection on being a female artist at 83.

Alongside the This Is She exhibition local artist Graham Mackie will undertake a residency in a purpose-made space, using his time there to further investigate the Clarence landscape.

There will also be community exhibitions at starting with the Clarence Valley INFOCUS entrants exhibition followed by the Grafton Art Club, CRAVE artist trail curated by Deb Novak and the Maclean High School Origami Cranes exhibition focusing on positive affirmations which features 500 cranes made by the students and 500 to be made by the community.



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