CREATIVE COMMUNITIES

Octapod has a long history of working with communities on creative projects. Our current focus is to work with priority groups across two main areas: access and inclusion into the arts, and professional development for artists.

We recognise that participation in the arts can take many forms – arts as recreation, therapy or professional practice. And that there may be barriers that affect participation by these groups as creators, participants or audience members. We seek to provide and facilitate multiple access points into the arts through all of our projects including our Creative Communities program.

Our current priority groups are: people with disability, youth and people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (CALD). We work in collaboration with community partners who have local knowledge and genuine existing relationships with members of these groups.

 

PEOPLE WITH DISABILITY

 

Octapod seeks to create the bridge between the arts and disability sectors in Newcastle and the Lower Hunter region through an innovative approach to community cultural development, arts programming, delivery of activities and creation of resources which inform and empower individuals to participate in and contribute to a truly inclusive society.

Octapod is currently working with the community to develop new models to support artists with disability as well as accessible and inclusive arts and cultural programs. We have identified the need for greater support for:

– career development for artists with disability

– access and inclusion within the arts for people with disability as leaders, creators, participants and audiences.

View our current and past projects.

 

PAST PROJECT: ART COUNTS EXHIBITION 2013

 

PAST PROJECT: PARTICIPATE EXHIBITION 2010-2012

 

YOUTH

 

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PAST PROJECT: YOUTH: TIN RADIO

 

PAST PROJECT: YOUTH: ICEY CULTURAL EXCHANGE

 

PEOPLE FROM CULTURALLY AND DIVERSE BACKGROUNDS (CALD)

 

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PAST PROJECT:: YOUTH:: Digital Storytelling: TiNA

Octapod first started producing digital stories in September 2008, when it partnered with TAFE Outreach to deliver a short digital storytelling course. Course participants learnt interviewing and video production techniques, and acted as Octapod’s media team at the This Is Not Art (TiNA) Festival in early October: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vgV-UTFUFT8

In 2009 we followed up with another digital storytelling course in partnership with TAFE Outreach. This time we focused on the issue of youth homelessness. In 2009 we also assisted the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) to produce a short digital story about responses to natural disaster. The DVD was used as a resource in schools.

In 2010 we received a grant from the Community Relations Commission to work with young people from cuturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds to produce a digital story about friendship. This project was run in partnership with the Multicultural Neighbourhood Centre and Waratah High School: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2cPWRrSLPA

In 2010 Octapod’s volunteer media team produced a short digital story about ‘walkARTbout’, a public art project that took place as part of the This Is Not Art Festival: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yjwdcn-WiLg

PAST PROJECT: CALD: DIGITAL STORYTELLING: FRIENDS

In 2010 we received a grant from the Community Relations Commission to work with young people from cuturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds to produce a digital story about friendship. This project was run in partnership with the Multicultural Neighbourhood Centre and Waratah High School: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2cPWRrSLPA

PAST PROJECT: CALD: DIGITAL STORYTELLING: SEEDPOD – IN A MINUTE

In 2011 Octapod offered a small grant program called SeedPod. Tara Jones was one of the grant recipients and she ran a short filmmaking course at Penola House (a refugee resettlement service) with women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, called ‘In A Minute’.

PAST PROJECT: CALD: DIGITAL STORYTELLING: PENOLA HOUSE

In 2012 Octapod received a grant from the Australia Council to fund a digital storytelling project called ‘Memory Room Narratives’. This project was delivered during 2013 [ADD MORE DETAIL]

Octapod is interested in partnering with community organisations on digital media projects. If you have a story to tell, contact us to see how we can collaborate.

 

PAST PROJECTS: OTHER: Octapod Zine Library

Octapod has a collection of over 2000 zines – the largest collection of its kind in Australia. The zine library started with a call-out for zines as part of the This is Not Art festival in 1998, when the New Pollution anthology was created. Since then the library’s growth has been organic and sporadic.The collection has been classified as ‘significant’ by the National Library of Australia.

The Octapod Zine Library is now located at the Newcastle City Library (Local Studies Collection) can be accessed by appointment at the Library.

 

PAST PROJECT: Other: SeedPod

Octapod has a long history of supporting arts and cultural development in the Hunter region. Our inaugural SeedPod program was designed to assist artists or arts workers to work with communities on creative projects. The types of projects that we were interested in supporting used arts based processes as a way to engage, inspire, give voice and create change.

SeedPod was driven by community cultural development principles. The two successful applicants in 2011 demonstrated that there was community participation in developing the project idea, community ownership of project processes, professional development of applicant as a result of the project, and high production values and artistic merit.

The 2011 SeedPod recipients were:

  • Tara Jones, a documentary filmmaker, with her project ‘In A Minute’, which involved working with young women from diverse backgrounds on a short filmmaking project. Participants learnt basic production techniques and began work on individual one-minute films on a topic of their choice.
  • Helen Hopcroft, visual artist, with her project ‘Seed’, which involved working in partnership with Figtree Community Garden to run a series of art workshops for garden members and the general public as well as developing the themes for a mural to be painted on the side of the Croatian Wickham Sports Club.