Red Threads Kimonos move from the Regional Gallery back to REDinc.
Red Threads began through as an idea a few years ago when the amazing artists of REDinc. voiced a strong desire to create costumes and pieces of art to wear.
Lismore, and the Northern Rivers in general celebrates its incredible diversity through dressing up on a daily basis – “style is being yourself, but on purpose” as the late Quentin Crisp quipped.
In early 2015 REDinc. faciliators, Naomi Feller and Jeremy Hawkes, were successful in securing a small grant from the leading state disability arts body, Accessible Arts. The first project was launched with incredible energy and participation. Local artists were employed as mentors and to provide technical support to help REDinc. artists fulfil their costume dreams: the results were so good, and the interest so great, that off the back of this REDinc. was able to secure funding from the peak national arts body: the Australia Council for the Arts. This is somewhat akin to winning the lottery, or an Oscar; reflecting the incredible talents and dedication the REDinc. artists.
Red Threads Stage 2 was launched in late 2016.
The increase in funding was 300% which enabled the project to grow. We were going to New Zealand to enter (and win!) the World of Wearable Art festival….little did we know that cyclone Debbie had other plans in store…
The majority of the work done to date was washed away in the flood waters. Some pieces remained, but the project needed to be entirely re-thought and begun anew from the ground-up. This is where the incredible drive and talents of Zilpha Menghetti came in. The project became centred around a common theme: the Kimono! The participating artists recommenced with gusto.
Within six months the project was completed and the results speak for themselves. A performance viewing was given at the recently opened and brand spanking new Lismore Regional Gallery to great fanfare and acclaim. Further plans are in the pipelines, and there has been a recent showing of the kimonos in the shop windows of the ‘BunnyHole’ on Magellan St. Lismore.
This project could not have been possible without the incredibly generous and welcome support from the Australia Council for the Arts, in particular: the disability arts team. This particular stream of funding has only been available as a specific category for a few years and it’s efficacy is now under review. It’s incredibly important for organisations like REDinc. and professional artists who live with a disability that this tailored funding continue. Artists with disability face increased challenges that need to be addressed on a national level – the cultural significance of this contribution to culture cannot be overstressed and it is through projects such as RED Threads that we can fully realise the incredible contribution these artists have to give.
Come and see the kimonos now on display at 87 Magellan St. Lismore
from November 21st 2017 for 4 weeks.
Many thanks to all involved: Jenny London, Zilpha Manghetti, Naomi Feller, Jeremy Hawkes, Michael Gates, Rosemary, Rick, Claudie Frock, Jennifer Robinson, Amy Serone, Lee Hilder, Lee Spyker, Peter Dickson, Lucas Wright, Jennifer Robinson, Alice Bartlett, Theo McPherson.