Ballina council to review controversial gallery change
BALLINA Shire Council is reviewing the controversial Northern Rivers Community Gallery exhibition timeframe after public pressure.
The timeframe was moved from four weeks to eight weeks in 2019 to allow for greater exposure to exhibiting artists, but the move has been criticised by the community.
A petition to revert the timeframe was created on Change.org in May and has received more than 400 signatures in support.
This has led to the item being placed on the agenda for the council’s facilities committee meeting on Monday, July 13.
The council is set to look at three options, including maintaining the current eight-week schedule, returning to the original four-week schedule or implementing a new six-week exhibition program.
Maintaining the current timeframe is preferred as, according to the meeting’s agenda, it allows the gallery to offer an “expanded cultural program, operational efficiencies and consistency with industry standards”.
Earlier this year, petition co-founder Paul Button said the increased timeframe diminished much needed exhibition opportunities.
“It also means that all the general public, and it is a community gallery, … would have 50 per cent less art to go and see, which is not the way we thought it should go,” he said.
However, the council has maintained its stance that an eight-week time frame is the best available option and has nominated that as it’s recommendation ahead of the meeting.
The meeting takes place Monday, July 13 at the Ballina Shire Council Chambers, commencing at 4pm and can be lifestreamed on the council’s website.