The Artists Open Studio Weekends are held every year over the first 2 weekends in March.
Open Studios 2019
The ever-popular Mercury Bay Art Escape Open Studio weekends are held every year over the first 2 weekends in March and draw many art-loving visitors to the beautiful coastal area of Mercury Bay on the Eastern Coromandel Peninsula. This stunning self-drive art tour includes Hikuai, Tairua, Hahei, Hot Water Beach, Cooks Beach, Whenuakite, Coroglen, Whitianga, Kuaotunu, Rings Beach and Opito Bay. Coupled with world-class scenery, eateries and wineries the Open Studio weekends provide the perfect opportunity to spend time and enjoy art.
Mercury Bay Art Escape artists include potters, sculptors, painters, printmakers, photographers, weavers, woodworkers, mosaic artists, jewellers, a glass artist and a furniture maker. There are six new artists in the 2019 event making a total of 36 artists across the Eastern Coromandel area with 3 art groups also opening their studios and creative spaces. Studios are open 10am to 4pm on 2nd, 3rd and 9th, 10th March. Entry to visit artists is free.
While viewing their latest artworks take the time to meet the artists and talk with them about their ideas and how they work to give you greater insight and understanding of art and creative practices.
This year in addition to the Open Studio weekends on 2-3 and 9-10 March, we are bringing you an expanded format of exciting events during the week between the Open Studio weekends.
The Mercury Bay Art Escape events also include; a Gala Opening (Friday night 1st March), the Showcase Exhibition (2 March - 22 April), Chasing Mercury Art Workshops (4-8 March), Tuia 250 Street Art Festival (4-8 March), sculpture with Chris Charteris (3rd March) and a Summer Showcase Concert with the Whitianga Music Club (8th March). See www.mercurybayartescape.com for the full event details.
Tuia 250 Whitianga Street Art Festival
As well as all these events, the Tuia 250 Street Art Festival will take place in Whitianga during 4 to 8 March between the annual Art Escape Open Studio weekends. Mercury Bay Art Escape has organised this festival specifically to highlight the national Tuia - Encounters 250. Te Whanganui a Hei (Mercury Bay) has great seafaring significance as this is where the great navigator Kupe visited many centuries ago and in 1769 was one of four landing sites for Cook’s ship The Endeavour.
The festival features internationally renowned street artists Charles and Janine Williams, Flox and Trustme and involve Mercury Bay Art Escape artists including their patron Artist Michael Smither. Popular street artists from the Coromandel, Auckland and Hamilton will also participate. The 12 murals will reflect the themes of “First Encounters” or of “Navigation” to tie in with both the new-look Whitianga townscape and with Tuia 250.
Art Workshops 4- 8 March in Whitianga
This brand new series of fun art workshops is another opportunity for artists and everyone of all levels of experience. These are taking place in Whitianga from 4th to 8th March 2019, (between our Open Studio weekends) and will feature Mercury Bay ArtEscape Artists and Guest Artists as tutors.
The selection of fun art workshops to be held from March 4 to 8th include:
Art workshops with Art Escape tutors:
Flax Weaving with Raewyn Hildreth
Mixographic and Collagraphs with Paula McNeill
Photography with Ian Preece
Selling Art on Social Media with Reina Cottier
Mixed Media with Wendy Walls
Art workshops with Guest artist tutors:
Acrylic Painting - Flowers and Acrylic Painting – Seascapes with Charlotte Gilbin
Gold leaf Painting and Painting with Palette Knife with Elena Nikolaeva
Watercolouring Florals and Watercolouring Landscape with Claudia Stanley
For art workshop information and bookings:
The Coromandel, Tairua to Kuaotunu