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Achievement recognised

GALLERY EXCELS: Lapunyah's Helen Dennis and Kim Osburn celebrate the gallery's recognition.
GALLERY EXCELS: Lapunyah's Helen Dennis and Kim Osburn celebrate the gallery's recognition. Brooke Duncan

CHINCHILLA'S Lapunyah Art Gallery may be small, but it's just got some big recognition for its impressive training program.

The gallery was nominated as a finalist in the Gallery and Museum Achievement Awards Projects: Organisations Volunteer Run category.

The nomination was in recognition of Lapunyah's Exhibition Facilitators - In House Traineeship program designed to give volunteers a deeper understanding of the gallery's operational procedures.

Lapunyah Art Gallery's secretary/director Helen Dennis said the program was designed to train a volunteer in curatorial practices and facilitating exhibitions, including paperwork, installing exhibitions, and organising previews.

"Learning how to interact with artists, being able to source artists, find out people who are interested in exhibiting,” Mrs Dennis said.

Mrs Dennis said the program was particularly important because all the gallery's staff are volunteers.

"It's all a part of succession planning because we're just volunteers, so if one of us drops off the perch literally, we've got to... build up a skill base and you've got to be able to pass that skill base on.

"When the Museums and Galleries people saw it (the program) they were blown away to think that a little regional gallery run by volunteers was able to produce a program that would enable us to keep going with our succession planning so that we're not floundering around looking for somebody,” Mrs Dennis said.

"For our little gallery to get that was just really good acknowledgement of what we do here.”

The first trainee through the program, Kim Osburn, said she recommends all emerging and serious artists acquire insight into the procedures of bringing an exhibition concept to fruition.

"For 12 months under the guidance of gallery staff I have overseen the running of The Outer Bark Gallery, putting all my new found skills to the test,” she said.

"I now have the confidence to back my own ability to arrange and hang a diverse range of artworks.

"This type of training within a volunteer run gallery requires commitment and dedication by all involved and I see it as an invaluable tool in keeping our regional galleries open to the public and enjoyed for many years to come.”

Topics:  gamaa awards lapunyah art gallery


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