4 April 2024

Entries flooding in as artists celebrate 'why we love Wagga'

| Chris Roe
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WWCC's Christine Priest

WWCC’s Christine Priest from the Regional Activation team and some of the entries so far. Photo: Chris Roe.

The entries are rolling in for Wagga Wagga City Council’s art prize with almost 100 locals so far sharing a creative perspective on the city we live in.

The Wagga Wagga 2050 Art Competition was launched in conjunction with the consultation phase of developing a new Community Strategic Plan (CSP) in January.

Christine Priest from the Regional Activation team said it was a great way to get locals to think outside the box and to consider what they value about life in the Riverina.

“We were really wanting to know what people love about Wagga and asked them to draw a picture or paint something to share with us what’s important to them as part of their community,” she said.

“I think it’s a good opportunity to get some insight into what’s really important for people within the community and it’s also an exciting way to get people engaged and participating in the Community Strategic Plan.”

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Entries will close on Friday 26 April, with the winners to be announced on Tuesday 30 April.

“There’s different categories right from young children through to 18-year-olds and then we’ve also got an open over 18 category too,” Christine explained.

“We’re really keen to get as many entries as we can and there are some great prizes too.”

The winners will have the choice of a voucher from one of the following locations: Oasis Regional Aquatic Centre, the Civic Theatre and The Wagga Wagga Shop, or a ‘Shop Local’ Gift Card, with $250 for the winner and $100 and $50 vouchers for the runners-up.

Entries are displayed on the WWCC website with a host of familiar locations from Wagga Beach to Lake Albert and the Botanic Gardens proving popular.

Well known local artists such as Maggie Deall, Kim Baker and Dimity Einhaus have contributed beautiful landscapes of the city and surrounding countryside.

“I fell in love with the amazing sunrises and sunsets over the Riverina when I moved here eight years ago,” wrote Maggie alongside her colourful impression of the skies over Wagga.

Kim Baker’s pastoral scene of The Gap reflects a similar love of country life after escaping the big city.

“We love the rural lifestyle,” Kim wrote.

“The open skies, the rolling paddocks, the sheep in the fields, the hay bales rolled and ready to head off to the shed or the next farm.”

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Dimity Einhaus chose to capture the natural and creative heart of the city, highlighting Wagga’s “many lovely parks and gardens” along with the theatre and art galleries in her painting Autumn at Wollundry.

An artist named simply Marie has contributed a colourful work focusing on diversity, Celebrating Wagga Wagga’s Inclusive Heartbeat and featuring a collage of images including the historical landmarks and totems.

“This artwork echoes the soulful essence of Wagga Wagga, blending its inclusive charm with Wiradjuri heritage as a place of many dances,” she said.

“It’s a heartfelt tribute to the essence of Wagga Wagga – embracing diversity, celebrating unity, and cherishing the rhythms of life in this welcoming oasis.”

With more than three weeks left to enter, WWCC is hoping to see more than 100 entries and continues to seek feedback on the Community Strategic Plan for Wagga Wagga 2050 that will provide direction and focus for the local government area over the next two decades.

Residents can get involved online through WWCC’s Have Your Say Wagga platform.

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