Arts Junction adds wow factor to Katikati

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woman stands next to seated woman in Arts Junction Katikati

Katikati’s new Arts Junction has staked its claim on the old library by transforming the building into a stunning creative space.

The `wow factor’ starts at the door with a quirky wooden walkway artwork by Marc and Debbie Spijkerbosh that leads into the Junction where the magic starts.

The previous gloom of the old building has been refreshed with interior decorating, fewer walls and floodlight space.

The Arts Junction leases the building from Western Bay of Plenty District Council and the spaces within have been sub-leased to the Katikati Arts Collective and the Information Centre.

Katch Katikati manager Jacqui Knight is excited about the future of the centre for the town.

Gathering more of the arts into one building will increase the town’s point of difference as a destination for visitors wanting to explore Katikati’s reputation as a mural and arts town.

Next door to the Junction is the Western Bay Museum, across the road is the new Katikati Library and Community Hub and within walking distance is the Haiku Pathway and Bird Walk and three other art galleries within the Village retail centre.

A boutique theatre is being established in the largest space within the Junction where the Theatre Group is building a multi-use stage for its productions, the performing arts and community exhibitions.

Having a home base for its theatre productions is a milestone for the group which until now has been nomadic within the town.

Treasurer Bob Baunton says the new theatre replaces 15 local venues previously used by the group.

The different spaces within the Junction lend the centre to film-making, movies, themed events, meeting rooms and corporate event hire.

Katikati Open-Air Art also has its own gallery space with art works on display and for sale.

Operating costs for the Junction will be recouped from space hireage, art exhibitions, film festivals, information centre sales, meeting room hire and artisan art commissions.

A building fund has been growing over the past eight years as money has been squirrelled away in anticipation of the Junction being established. This money has covered the renovation costs. In addition to self-funding through these avenues, the Junction is applying for external funding.

Jacqui says it is now up to the public to make the most of the arts space that people have wanted for so long – and for the community to use the centre so that the Junction can thrive.

For more information or enquiries about use of the Arts Junction call 549 5250 or email jacqui@katchkatikati.org.nz.