Winter Wander is formally all wrapped up and done - we've just submitted our budget and final report to council!

In the interest of transparency and keeping conversations going about what it takes to run events like this, we thought we'd post a copy of the report here, and chat about some key takeaways.

You can read the full report here.

Reverie at the BNZ Centre. Image: Janneth Gil

Winter Wander was an 8 day long pop-up arts festival in Cashel Mall and the surrounds, consisting of five installations in vacant retail spaces, an exhibition of works on paper at the BNZ Centre, a night market, an arts trail in local businesses, and four pop-up Lunchtime Sketch Clubs.

We undertook this activation with the aim of encouraging increased footfall and public engagement in Cashel Mall and surrounds during winter, supporting local practitioners in developing and presenting new work, encouraging local businesses to get involved with the arts and central city regeneration, and showcasing the central city’s potential to host unique creative events through collaboration between creatives and businesses.

Min-Young Her at the Guthrie Centre. Image: Janneth Gil

The programme worked with 65 artists in total - incorporating a wide range of art mediums and approaches.

The exhibition, Reverie, included 31 Christchurch artists, and was visited by 441 people over the course of 11 days. As a benchmark, this is on par with what we would have considered an extremely good opening week at CoCA Toi Moroki in 2017.

The art trail included 11 local artists in 9 businesses - almost all of them locally-owned (the only exception being H&M). The installations in vacant spaces included 9 local artists.

We worked with local designers, a photographer and videographers in the production of Winter Wander, supporting more local creative businesses.

The Lunchtime Sketch Clubs brought together four models with four ‘icebreaker artists’, and had an average of 40 people sketching over the course of each 2 hour session. Onlookers and art admirers numbered approximately 300 - with about 200 of them passing by and engaging when we were set up outside Ballantynes in Cashel Mall. A lot of people asked hopefully if we’d be running them regularly.

2719 people came through the Hereford St car park foyer during the Conscious Club Night Market - this is approximately 1500 more than their usual footfall on a Friday.

Artists at the first Lunchtime Sketch Club in the Crossing Airbridge. Image: Janneth Gil

Feedback from the general public was very positive. A stand-out quote was “I love Christchurch now! We do such cool things!”

The Winter Wander programme aimed to support and showcase a diverse range of artists and art forms. This was highlighted as one of the stand out positives of the event in collected feedback from artists. The opportunity to discover and meet other local artists was also an element that many artists appreciated, alongside being given opportunities to exhibit in Ōtautahi.

Of the retailers hosting works in the art trail, many noticed an increase in foot traffic and engagement from people looking at the artworks. HAPA and Scorpio both reported higher sales during Winter Wander.

A lot of the public had very positive things to say when they saw our Lunchtime Sketch Clubs - these were one of the most effective means of creating a buzz in public spaces. A wide range of people engaged in the event - from children and families to tourists, central city office workers, dedicated art fans and intrigued passersby.

A common theme in feedback from artists, retailers, and public was around wayfinding and navigation - in future, we would produce a more detailed map (this was limited by timeframes this time around) and increase signage in key areas.

Artists at our second Lunchtime Sketch Club outside Ballantynes. Image: Jennifer K Shields

Multiple Bottom Line Analysis

Winter Wander was delivered almost precisely within budget, with just over $1900 outstanding to Audrey Baldwin and Jennifer Shields for hours worked. This is a cost that Glitterbox has absorbed and will consider as sponsorship for the event. In future, this will provide a good baseline for the amount of hours a project as extensive as Winter Wander requires to deliver well.

$4295 of the funding went to local artists and creatives. Just over $2100 of the funding went to local businesses, such as Gordon Harris, Signtech, and Miss Saigon.

Winter Wander considered environmental impacts:

  • The Conscious Club Market stalls were made up of ethically and sustainably sourced and upcycled products with a strong focus on environmental responsibility.
  • The fabric used in the Solipsis installation will be reused and made into dresses by Steven Park for his 6x4 label.
  • Mandy Cherry Joass’ installations were created from recycled aluminium blinds and made use of traditional weaving techniques.
  • Fiksate’s installation elements can be reconfigured for further installations in the future.
  • Any remaining collateral will be reused by Glitterbox in making badges.
Mandy Cherry Joass - Puapua Whenua (detail). Image: Janneth Gil

Culturally, this event helps to cast Ōtautahi as a creative city which supports a rich and diverse array of creativity. Artforms featured in the programme included painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, ceramics, installation, photography, textile/embroidery, drag and cabaret, and collage. With further funding, music and other performance could quite easily be added to the mediums showcased.

Winter Wander also presented work from Māori, Korean, Japanese, Cuban, Colombian, and Zimbabwean practitioners, as well as practitioners from the LGBTQIA+ community.

The programme included works from a wide range of artists in terms of career stage, too. Reverie included work by professional practitioners and award winning contemporary artists who have exhibited internationally, as well as emerging and self taught creatives in their first public show.

Making every event free meant that Winter Wander was highly accessible.

Being able to pay artists properly is a key part of Glitterbox Pursuits’ kaupapa. We aim to contribute to successful and sustainable creative careers.

Expenditure

Winter Wander brought in $320 in exhibitor fees for Reverie, so the total budget available was $15,320.

Total Council Grant: $15,000.00
Total Amount Spent: $15,320

  • Marketing & Promotion: $3188.15
  • Entertainment $287.45 (opening event manaakitanga)
  • Production $5959.71
  • Salaries $5884.69

Special thanks

Glitterbox Pursuits would love to thank our artists, and the businesses and spaces that hosted artworks. Without them, Winter Wander wouldn’t have happened. Thanks also to Christchurch City Council, who provided funding to enable Winter Wander to happen. Thanks to Life in Vacant Spaces, who helped gain access to many spaces. Thanks to Momentum Creative, who made everything Winter Wander look so gorgeous. To Laurent Youmi, Shea McKenzie, and Janneth Gil for making sure everyone could experience Winter Wander through fantastic documentation. To the artists and models, and hosts of the Lunchtime Sketch Clubs, and everyone who stopped by to sketch.