Clarence Valley plunge Art & Culture Festival

Every Autumn, the Clarence Valley plunge Art & Cultural Festival takes a deep dive into arts of every description. plunge is on until April 30 and has 175 festival and fringe events on offer with everything from paper plate etching, carving, song writing, ukuleles to men in kilts…too many to cover in one article so Coastbeat offers up two of our favourites.

Circus in a Day

Roll up, roll up. Join Ringmaster Rosie as she presents the most incredible Pirate Circus in the world, with you in the starring role! The workshop is a one day only fun-filled event in Yamba on Sunday, April 28.

Jacqui Levy (aka Ringmaster Rosie) and her partner Rhett Morrow, have created this combined workshop and performance for plunge. Participants learn a wide variety of circus skills: spinning plates, hula hoop, balances, tumbling, devil sticks, magic and more, so that at the end of the day they can perform their pirate hijinks to astounded family and friends.

Clarence Valley plunge Art & Culture Festival

Jacqui started her career as a school teacher, before being contracted to work with the famous Flying Fruit Fly Circus, then touring the world with Circus Oz. Having her own children brought her down to earth and, necessity being the mother of invention for mothers, she and Rhett created Circus in Education.

This workshop is suitable for participants aged 6 and up. To register go to https://circusineducation.com.au/incursions/workshops/plunge-festival-registration/ 

HEADwaters – Grafton Regional Gallery

Headwater: the source of a river: the source of creativity: the source of life. This inspiring art exhibition was created by seven artists, capturing the beauty of the Clarence Valley landscape through paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculpture, ceramics, music and performance art.

The artists, Theresa Edwina Brook, Margo Grant, Malcolm King, Julie McKenzie, Fiona Nicholls, Annie Roberts and Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal, visited the area over a period of three years, responding to the changing scenery.

Clarence Valley plunge Art & Culture Festival

“Working in the landscape helped with process,” says Annie Roberts. “We were able to feel the environment: the heat, the scent, the sounds. One morning we got up at 4am for our morning cuppa and spent time watching and drawing the shadows as they receded, capturing the changing landscape.”

The project was conceived by Fiona Nicholls. “I’ve always been inspired by the linear qualities of environment,” she says. “I’m interested in the mark made to convey a sense of immediacy, the suggestion of contour and form, an essence of something unique to place. It is that first being-in-the-moment feeling.”

The Clarence headwater is 76kms outside Tabulam, in north-west NSW. Fiona describes it as, “a wilderness of steep hills and narrow, winding river flats, continuously changing in character, form and light, day to night, season to season.”

The HEADwaters exhibition is on at the Grafton Regional Gallery until 19th May. See www.graftongallery.nsw.gov.au for further information.

The 2019 Clarence Valley plunge Art & Culture Festival runs until Tuesday, April 30 – https://www.clarence.nsw.gov.au/cp_themes/metro/page.asp?p=DOC-YQM-37-12-83