A donated easel has brought additional colour and creativity to community engagement at St Paul’s Anglican Church in Ashgrove, becoming the focus of an innovative artist-in-residence pilot program.
Every six months a new artist will be given access to the easel and a space at the inner-west Brisbane church.
Parish priest The Rev’d Dr Margaret Wesley said that the unique program will provide an ongoing collaborative benefit.
“The easel was donated for sale through our thrift shop,” Dr Wesley said.
“It was such a generous donation – we realised we could extend that gift in perpetuity through this artist-in-residence program.
“The artist agrees to contribute an artwork to the parish at the conclusion of their appointment.”
The first appointee is local artist Sue Webster, who said she is grateful for the space because she has limited room in her small unit to practise painting.
“Now I’ll be able to use my dining table for its intended purpose – I’m a ham-fisted amateur and put the ‘pain’ into painting,” Ms Webster said with characteristic modesty.
“This appointment has given me real momentum to try harder at my art.
“I’ve painted since childhood, and have been a keen sketcher both for work and leisure.
“I’m still exploring my preferred style; that’s what’s so wonderful about this appointment – it gives me space to experiment without falling over the footstool.
“I paint with acrylics. I also like to sketch and wrestle with watercolour.”
Dr Wesley said the innovative initiative added to the church’s strong arts footprint.
“St Paul’s already hosts the Westside Orchestra, and a long-term tenant, Ashgrove Dance Studio, has been teaching children to dance for over 100 years,” she said.
“We believe that people are creative because we are made in the image of God, the Creator.
“So it is only appropriate for churches to do what we can to support and facilitate creativity in our community.
“We hope the artists in our program will gain confidence and recognition, as well as space to create.
“We are delighted to work with our first artist, Sue Webster, as we establish the program.”
Local artists of all capabilities are invited to apply for the next appointment round. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.Jump to next article