Katrina Fox's blog

Artists try their hand at creative retailing (Perth)

An innovative group of fledgling artists and designers have hit on a clever way to showcase their wares - popping up in vacant shops around Perth. 

Known as the Montage Collective, the 14-strong group use the offer of lower rents and a one-month lease to afford prime retail space. 

The latest Montage store to "pop up" is at 224 William Street, Northbridge, and will be there the rest of this month. Last month, the collective had a one-month lease for a shop in Fremantle. 

Primary school pupils run shop in aid of Oxfam (UK)

This is a nice initiative - start them young! :) 

From The Birmingham Mail: 

Pupils from a Birmingham primary school are swapping the classroom for a shopping mall to run a pop-up store in a bid to raise cash for charity.

Year Five pupils at Hill West Primary School in Four Oaks will be running the shop in The Mall, in Sutton Coldfield town centre, during Oxfam's Water Week from today until Friday. 

They will sell hand-made and sustainable products made by themselves or donated by local businesses.

UK high street see 20 shop close every day

Having just returned from a trip to the UK, I saw this first hand. Even the number of stalls at Covent Garden market had decreased. Will be interesting to see if there's a surge in the temporary reuse of these spaces.

From International Supermarket News: 

According to new research, due to high costs and low consumer spending retail insolvencies have been pushed up by nine per cent in the second quarter.

Chashama: providing opportunities for artists via vacant properties (US)

Chashama is a non-profit arts organisation in New York that has, since 1995, provided opportunities for local artists by awarding grants, producing shows and providing subsidised studio, gallery, rehearsal and performance space by utilising vacant properties. 

Gold Coast Council funds empty space plan to boost culture

A new plan designed to help reduce the level of retail space vacancy and boost culture and the arts on the Gold Coast has been endosed by the local council's Economic Development and Tourism Committee. The Council also will provide funding of $20,000 for Connecting Southern Gold Coast to establish a not-for-profit organisation to manage the project.

Committee Chair Councillor Susie Douglas said the 'Renew Gold Coast' project was based on similar projects in other regional cities across the country.

Setting up a Pop-Up Gallery

A new addition to the Empty Spaces Toolkit. This article will be continually updated.

Getting access to a pop-up space is just the beginning. There are many other challenges to overcome in order to turn a disused building into a vibrant business. Here are some thoughts for artists interested in setting up in an empty space on getting your empty shop ready for opening day.  

Branding on a budget

From Inside Retailing:

How to make a shop: Take a few large cardboard boxes, some brown tape, empty olive oil bottles, some magnetic plastic leaves, four designer lamps and wooden poles and a little string.

Put some weights in the boxes, wrap the tape around them to make your service desk and display plinths. String up your wooden poles and hang the lights from them.

Use the bottles to display ornamental grasses, stick the magnetic leaves on the ceiling air ducts to add a bit of theatre, and
there you have it.

Artists’ Trailer Diaspora Begets a Mobile Clothing Store (US)

From The New York Times:

Barely a month after an ill-starred trailer-park-cum-art-colony put its trailers on the market, one of the vehicles has found new life as a pop-up clothing store, writes Jed Lipinski.

"Mobile Vintage Shop,” reads a sign on a trailer parked across the street from Roberta's, the fashionable pizzeria at the corner of Moore Street and Bogart Street in Bushwick, Brooklyn. "Everything $20 or less,” reads another. "Please step inside.”

Art and politics event (Melbourne)

This looks good!

Arena Project Space is holding an arts program launch and fundraising event - a forum discussing art and politics on Tuesday 17 May, 6 pm, 2 Kerr Street Fitzroy (between Nicholson and Brunswick streets).

Arena Project Space is a new exhibition and forum space, which has grown from Arena Publications, a broad left political and cultural project that has been running for over 30 years in Melbourne.

Squat Story Time (compiling a zine of squat stories)

This event takes place at Plump Gallery, 24 Enmore Road, Enmore on Sunday 24 April, 5pm-8pm. All welcome. It's posted as an event on Facebook but as not everyone's on FB, I'm posting the entire text here, plus a link. You can also email or post your stories if you can't make it to the event:

As part of SCUM VS SCUM, 11-day exhibition and think tank.

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