Pop Up Art Brings Colour to Ballina's CBD

Since Lismore's Art in the Heart Project set up in 2010, art in empty spaces has very quickly become the trend on NSW's far north coast. The latest initiative is the Kim Toft & Jacqueline King Pop-Up Gallery in Ballina located in a Ballina Shire Council-owned shop in Wigmore Arcade.

Kim Toft & Jacqueline King Pop-Up Gallery, BallinaThe Council has plans to upgrade the arcade and approved pop-up galleries in its property as a way of filling empty shops while decisions are being made about the future development. In August 2012, Ballina councillors unanimously voted to seek expressions of interest from local artists and art groups to establish pop-up galleries or studio spaces in the arcade.

Initiated by Greens Councillor Jeff Johnson, the idea was supported by Ballina Arts and Craft Centre Incorporated (BACCI) and the Ballina Art Society.  Jeff Johnson sees Pop-up galleries as a way to encourage more people back into the CBD.

"We need to find creative ways of encouraging them back into the CBD or more shops will close," he said. "Currently there are some very prominent vacant shops in the heart of the Ballina CBD."

Marine artist and author Kim Michelle Toft and glass artist Jacqueline King took the opportunity and set up their temporary gallery in October to showcase and sell their work. They're hoping to stay in the space for three months.

Kim Michelle Toft said, "This is the first Pop-Up Gallery approved by Ballina Shire Council and we look forward to making them proud and bringing colour, crowds and the arts into the heart of Ballina."

Gallery hours: Mondays to Fridays 10am-5pm and Saturdays & Sundays 10am-2pm.

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Story by Lisa Andersen, October 2012


Kim Toft & Jacqueline King Pop-Up Gallery
141 River Street Wigmore Arcade
Ballina, NSW 2478