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Showcase . . . Guests admire the range of Hurunui art on display at the opening of Arts Showcase Hurunui. Photo: Amanda Bowes

Arts evening . . . The opening of the Arts Showcase Hurunui was attended by many, who enjoyed discussing the large number of exhibits on display. PHOTO: AMANDA BOWES

By AMANDA BOWES

The Hurunui Memorial Library in Amberley was buzzing at the opening of the Arts Showcase Hurunui last Thursday evening.

Exhibits from Leithfield to Waiau and Cheviot dominated the library walls and other spaces, with 233 entries, well up on the last couple of years.

The variety of works caused much discussion from those at the opening, particularly that of guest artist, Jackie van de Plas with her display of quilts.

Works included paintings – oil, acrylic, water colour – jewellery made from different mediums, clothing, pottery, sculptures, photographs and artworks in pastel, ink and pencil.

Derek Johns, chairperson of Arts Showcase Hurunui said at the opening it was great to have such talented people on board.

“It has been a quiet year for the Hurunui Community Arts Council but membership is growing, from beginners to experts.”

He says the Arts Council is looking for art related projects to support and help and thanked the librarians for working around a disrupted work space.

Hurunui District Council Mayor Winton Dalley, who officially opened Showcase said moving Showcase from the council chambers to the library was a good move.

He was particularly impressed with Jackie van de Plas’ quilted landscapes.

“The reality is the area we all love is forever changing. When looking at the quilts I can see brand new landscapes, can appreciate the artists and the work they do. Welcome to this year’s exhibition.”

Usually a week long, the 2017 Showcase ran from September 14 to 18. Organisers say the shortened exhibition worked well and there were good sales made over the four days.

The Hurunui Community Arts Council is a voluntary body made up by members of the Hurunui arts community.

Their objectives are to encourage and promote the practice, appreciation and enjoyment of all forms of artistic activity within the Hurunui District and to undertake activities it determines are for the benefit of community arts in the Hurunui.