Geelong Art Society

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Geelong Art Society

The Geelong Art Society is a place that lives and breathes art, given it’s run completely by volunteers and thrives off encouraging and educating others to follow their own arts passions. The society functions out of the Shearer’s Arms Gallery and has done so since moving into the space in 1987.

We spoke to one of the passionate volunteers Michele Karakasch, who first joined the society in 2004.

What’s your favourite thing from being involved with the society? 

I enjoy being involved with a group of people who are dedicated to their art and to helping all artists both young and old to develop their skills and to share their experiences with other like-minded artists.

The Design Art Market is currently underway, what kind of pieces can be found in the space? 

The Design Market is open to members of the Society to put their work on display – most of which are paintings but there is also some sculpture work on display.

And are the artworks all made by local artists? Are there any artists in particular our readers should pay attention to?

Yes most of our presenting artists are from the local Geelong region. We do on occasion have guest artists hiring the gallery space and hosting their own work, these artists often come from other areas.

Many of our members are well known in the local region and the gallery space is available should they wish to hold their own exhibition. The role of the Art Society is to promote artists of all levels, giving them the opportunity to display their work in a gallery space.

There are also ongoing classes at the gallery, are these suited to people at any stage of their arts journey? What would you recommend to someone first starting out? 

Our classes are for all levels of expertise. Our tutors are able to work with students with a variety of levels. A brief description of class content is available for each class from the office. We have a couple of classes that are more targeted to the ‘beginner’ but most class groups are for those that have had some experience in painting. We often run one day workshops that are designed to introduce students to a particular discipline e.g. pastel, oil, watercolour and sculpture. We also run children’s classes for ages 7 years to 16. These classes are designed to explore all different aspects of art but allowing them to work on specific projects if they wish.

The space also hosts the VCE arts exhibition, and it’s great to see so much emerging talent in the one space. What kind of things were the students producing? 

We have hosted the VCE exhibition for seven years now and each year it gets bigger and the work more amazing. Student work covers a range of medium: sculpture, jewellery, painting, fashion design, photography, multimedia, visual communication, graphic design, the talent is mind blowing!

Were there any new techniques or styles that came through from the students? 

There are always pieces of artwork that are unique in their construction and concept. We have had work that is organic, work that is interactive with the viewer, sculpture made from rabbit bones, a huge portrait made from small origami pieces and many others made from a variety of objects and materials. Each year there is always something new that stands out, a testament to the amazing talent of the young Geelong artists.

Thanks again for taking the time to chat with Forte Magazine, is there anything else you’d like to add before we finish up? 

The Art Society has always been a community based organisation, our aim is to foster and promote the visual arts in the Geelong community. We need the ongoing support of the community and encourage them to visit the gallery or attend one of the many classes available. We run tutored and untutored groups as well as Life Drawing classes, there is something for all levels.

Image: Kirraley Hardiman pictured

Where: 202 Aberdeen St, Geelong West
Ph: (03) 5223 1825