New Raglan Arts Guide and web site signal countdown to RAW

A beautiful new Raglan Arts Guide, as well as a soon-to-be-launched web site, signal that the Raglan Arts Weekend in late October is drawing closer for fans and artists alike. Visitors and art aficionados will soon be able to use these resources to plan their self-guided trails to visit Raglan’s best art talent in their own creative spaces.

The new brochure and web site, which primarily house details of participating RAW artists and the studio maps, are also home to the township’s flagship design stores and four new galleries.

The idea is that the Raglan Arts Guide will be a year-round resource for ‘all things art’ in Raglan. In time, the RAW organisers hope to include more of the creative outlets and initiatives that make Raglan the artistic and inspiring place that it is. 

“Imagine a brochure that can also share info on public artworks and street murals, explain the heritage of the Old School Arts Centre or provide info on relevant art tours, exhibitions and events,” says Nicky Brzeska. “We obviously need to work within our budget constraints as every page costs money – so this may take some time – but we now have the format and the potential to easily expand as other businesses or initiatives wish to be involved.” 

RAW is now in its 12th year. This year’s event has 42 artists, including 13 new artists to RAW. Some of the old favourites – such as Jean Carbon and her beautiful silk installations – are back. Some explore new techniques, such as Tessa Skerman who ‘paints, slices and recreates’ her paintings. Other new RAW artists include AcidMince, Stuart Shepherd, Margaret Feeney, Dyana Wells, Mary Spacapan, Rodrigo Hill, Catherine Knox, Ross Thornton Jones, Sara Guix, Simon Blanchett and Tracie Heasman. 

“The recent lockdown feels eerily a bit like last time – a little too close to ‘launch’ day for our liking and it’s hard when you see other big conferences and events around you postpone or cancel,” says Nicky. “But the reality is that we’re still two months out from the event, and we all know anything can happen in that space of time, and so we’re just moving ahead as planned, until we’re closer and it becomes more apparent what we need to do.”

Last RAW was postponed to Labour Weekend from Easter because of lockdown, and the event was incredibly well attended by thousands of visitors from all over New Zealand, keen to snap up artworks and get out and about.

Locals can pick up brochure from a number of shops and cafes within Raglan, the iHub or from the Old School. If individuals are keen to have brochures for their accommodation spots, please visit the Old School to collect some from the office.

Anyone interested to contribute content or advertise in and be a part of next year’s Raglan Arts Guide or web site should contact Nicky at the Old School. 

The Raglan Arts Guide was designed by local graphic design agency, Mafia Designs, and the web site was built by another local, Simone Lourens. A detail of Mary Spacapan’s artwork, “Commissioned. We are.” has been used across the marketing material.

RAW 2021 is Labour Weekend 23-25 October 2021. Studios are open 10am until 5pm.

Raglan Arts Weekend 2021 runs 23-25 October. Visit raglanartsweekend.nz for more info.