New Life at Octapod

After an exhaustive (and exhausting) recruitment drive, Octapod has the pleasure of introducing three new members to the family including David Cranswick, Strategic Business Planner; Sarah Thrift, This is Not Art (TiNA) Festival Coordinator; and Andrea Pugh, Marketing Coordinator. The fresh faces and new directions have generated a distinct buzz in the Octapod office and the future’s quickly shaping-up to be even bigger and brighter than before!

Here’s a little more on our new team members:

David Cranswick (Strategic Business Planner) is a long-time fan of Octapod and holds strong connections with Newcastle. Deeply involved in the creative industries and digital cultures, David plans to take a deep breath and work on drawing together the energy and opportunities, which drive the creative scene in Newcastle. David has a background as a digital media curator, producer and arts manager working across a range of organisations including a role as Founding Director of The Edge Centre for Digital Innovation at the State Library of Queensland and Director d/Lux Media Arts in Sydney. Other than that he enjoys a number of the standard range of unlikely interests and pre-occupations.

Sarah Thrift (This is Not Art (TiNA) Festival Coordinator) – Working for the Bundanon Trust for many years has provided Sarah with a strong background in arts administration, across areas of public programming and marketing – making her the perfect fit as TiNA Festival Coordinator. Sarah has the task of making the many wonderful, strange and exciting elements of TiNA come together across five days, full of everything you would expect to see…and always something you didn’t! That’s the beauty of TiNA, giving artists the space and time to collaborate and experiment and oh so much more. Having studied creative arts at Wollongong University and working as a visual artist and graphic designer on the side, gives Sarah great insight for working with the many talented artists and performers who make TiNA what it is.

Andrea Pugh (Marketing Coordinator) is Octapod’s marketing guru – cooking-up master plans to promote the organisation and spruik all the latest Octapod happenings including events, opportunities and initiatives. Andrea has a background in visual arts, business and public relations and is currently undertaking a Master of Arts and Entertainment Management combining her passions for arts and marketing. When not keeping everyone abreast on all the latest at Octapod, Andrea spends much of her time digging in the garden and playing with her three full-of-beans fur kids.

This is Not Art (TiNA) 2012 Announcements

TiNA 2012 Call for Artist Submissions

TiNA festival is dedicated to the development of experimental and
emerging arts practice on a local and national level. The festival provides a platform
for innovative and passionate culture makers to conceive, collaborate and present
their ideas. Taking place since 1998, TiNA has grown to become one of
Australia’s leading independent and diverse multidisciplinary arts festivals.
TiNA presents Australia’s most exciting and emergent exhibitions, screenings,
performances, panels, workshops, gigs and interventions. Attracting an audience in
excess of 6000, TiNA takes place annually in Newcastle NSW over the first weekend in October.

Here’s your invitation to get involved – download application form.

Be sure to visit the following sub-festival websites to familiarise yourself with the convergence of artists, reviewers, thinkers, writers, dreamers, the independent, the emergent and the experimental!

*Applications close Sunday, 1 April 2012

Position Available: Artist/ Producer (Volunteer)

This is Not Art (TiNA) is seeking an artist/producer or collective to conceive and facilitate an ambitious and visible project which will activate Newcastle’s public spaces and engage the community.

  • The project is presented during the TiNA 2012 festival, held in Newcastle from 27 September – 1 October 2012.
  • The artist will work closely with the festival directors and the TiNA Festival Coordinator.
  • A history of working in public spaces and/or unusual venues is desirable.

For information, please click here. *Applications close Sunday, 1 April 2012

Latest News from Culture Hunter

Click here for all the latest cultural news, events and opportunities from across the Hunter.

Attention Exhibition & Event Holders

Are you hosting an exhibition or producing an event that you would like covered by the Culture Hunter reviews team? Culture Hunter has lots of writers available in Newcastle, and is also currently on the look-out for writers in other regions. If you would like further information or wish to invite a member of the Culture Hunter reviews team to cover your exhibition or event, please email

Final weekend to see Water Child presented by Newcastle Theatre Company (NTC)

Water Child
Water Child, a new play by NTC member Emma Wood, chronicles the struggles of one couple’s deepest desire to be parents, exploring what it means to be family, when “having it all” is touted as de rigueur for the professional couple of the 21st century.

Read the play review on Culture Hunter here.