Creative Caldera

Lydia PlowrightImpact, News

Murwillumbah Arts Trail Opening Night

Creative Caldera is a creative arts community organisation based in Murwillumbah committed to developing our region’s creative talent. Bringing together a community of supporters, volunteers, members and committee members, this important creative hub in our region continues to inspire and nurture both new and established artists while connecting community.

The Tweed has long been known as the home of artists. Once a year, they open their spaces to the public for one weekend only to participate in Creative Caldera’s annual Murwillumbah Arts Trail (MAT) event. Now in its 6th year and with over 5,000 attendees, the MAT is both a visual festival and major community event featuring over 100 artists in galleries, halls, studios and a range of unique spaces as well as performance art, music, indigenous participation, fringe arts and entertainment.

Children observing artwork at the 2021 MAT

Children observing artwork at the 2021 MAT

With the onset of Covid-19 last year, Creative Caldera was forced to cancel the MAT event 6 weeks before it was due to take place in the first weekend of May 2020 which in turn put the long-term survival of the festival in jeopardy. Creative Caldera Treasurer, Nick Clow told NRCF that “the cancellation was devastating for the committee as they had worked solidly for over 8 months to deliver a premium art and community event. The planning, preparation and creativity from an amazing committee appeared to be leading to the best Arts Trail yet, and 100 local and regional artists lost the single most important event of the year for them to showcase and sell their work. Equally, performing artists, musicians, fringe artists, galleries and studios lost their annual opportunity to participate in the event.”

NRCF Resilience and Recovery grant funding was instrumental in making the 2021 Murwillumbah Arts Trail event possible. Taking place from Friday the 28th to Sunday the 30th of May, this year’s event reached out to 9,000 residents and welcomed 6,000 visitors. This in turn supported 90 artists, performers and musicians, and many local businesses, while artistic collaborations and the development of a number of emerging artists assisted in sustaining the financial platform for the festival going forward. According to Nick, “the timing and size of NRCF’s grant was a springboard at the end of last year to get us through the uncertainty of Covid-19 and propel us to the very successful 2021 event.”

Find out more about the work of Creative Caldera HERE.

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