Words: MiSociety (David Potter) Images: Makemefamous & MiSociety
GO THE ARTISTIC EAGLES
The launch of the Manly Arts festival 2008 at the Manly Art Gallery and Museum was a bubbly affair, with locals, visitors and artists rubbing shoulders and chatting excitedly throughout the evening against a background of world beat music provided by the local band Flight. It was obvious that the crowd were hugely enjoying the featured exhibition for the launch, Bruce Goold – Artist, Designer, Printmaker. The Manly Art Gallery highlighted Bruce’s work in a series of superb displays giving the appearance of being within a series of visually stunning rooms.
The 15th Manly Arts Festival will run until 28 September and features visual art exhibitions, music, workshops, theatre, performance and literary events, developed by a dedicated team of volunteers and a dynamic events committee.
The question arises though - what is the point of an ‘Arts Festival’? Interestingly, the Manly Arts Festival is held at a time when some on the Northern Beaches peninsula are focused on the impending success or failure of the local rugby league team, the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles. There can be no doubt that interest and support for a local sporting team is good for the community but perhaps with the arrival of Spring a thinking person’s thoughts should be gravitating towards a broader front. After all, great cities, regions and locations, are far more likely to be remembered for their cultural and artistic merits than for their sporting prowess. No one’s fond memories of Paris or Venice are due to the prowess of those place’s sports teams!
Beyond that, at a time when confrontation and violence in society are the subject of much focus – and, unfortunately, nowhere more so than in Manly at present – the pursuit of excellence and interest in art and related fields can be a marvelous antidote to so much negativity that can surface within a particular community. Art, music, and literature, might stir passions and spark furious arguments at times but it does not normally produce stabbings and vandalism.
So the local community should do more than pay lip service and offering routine plaudits to this year’s Manly Arts festival. We should all actively attend and get embroiled in the events that are taking place in Manly and its environs, not only for the fun and enjoyment on offer but for the greater benefit for the future of the area we reside in. Who knows, if we get fully behind the Festival one day Manly could be hosting the equivalent of the Cannes Film Festival.
To find out all the details of the Manly Arts Festival events please go to www.manlyartsfestival.com/Share