I don't believe buildings and structures are communities, but merely the geographical mark where a body of people live work and play. What makes a community is the transformation of people to create a passion for living.
Communities are born from people's desire to share there passion and challenge our thoughts through creativity. The poets, writers, authors, performers', actors and artists should be the people giving birth to a community. They are our geographical conscious. For a community to become a living identity, the essential ingredients are a heart and soul and I believe Ipswich has the beginners of both.
Now is the time for us to embrace our creative soul and celebrate what makes us a rich city. From within Ipswich I hear murrs about the lack of community spirit and connections.
Yet as I network with poets, authors, artists from outside the Ipswich region, the question is what's in your water, Ipswich breeds creativity. Our city council is the envy of artists across Australian, as we share ideas of projects and ways to fund our concepts, I say have to talked to your local council? What, yes of course, the have no interest in the arts. What I down here in Hobart, because my council is looking for ways to build its resources through our precious community resources, artists like myself.
Our library is the envy of authors around Australia, authors and illustrates see Ipswich as a mecca, descending on Marburg every two years, for the Children's Writer's Festival. Our annual poets breakfast, attracts poets form Moree, Gulgong and Charter Towers.
Entries for the QT Ipswich Art Awards and the Ipswich Poetry Feast Awards continue to grow. Some of our local councilors are artists in their own write.
Cr Paul Tully and Cr David Phaikie use poetry to spar in Councils Chambers. My artist friends from outside the region are jealous when I take them up town. I can wheel up the street and local business owners know me by name. I owe my community for the amount of investment their given to a number of my creative passions. Outsides marvel at the relationships I have made. I endeavor to sow back everything my community has given me.
0I didn't just show-up in 2013 and have success with grants and become the successful artist I am. I am someone whose proud of my Ipswich Heritage, I live here by choice. I both see and feel our creative soul and the challenge our artists give the community.
To those who deny our creative identity I challenge the role and the investment they have given my community. It's all very well to sit back and dissect the lack of support from those outside the arts, and feel frustration of not being able to sell our work. However the reality is being in business as an artists is not that different to any other business, it is as I shared yesterday, a labor of love, driven by passion to continue to invest in other artists lives. I know my local community and they know me.
We don't need more buildings to cement our arts community, a building only clothes the creative soul. The collective passion I share with local teachers, librarians, artists, performers, café owners and councils are here. What you need to do is to walk out of your creative space periodically, and share in the richness of the Ipswich arts community. It is here waiting for you to come and embrace it!
My door is now open for business, but you'll have a better chance of catch me drinking coffee or doodling at art time. I live in my community and my community spirit lives in me.
Hope to chat to you in person soon!