ARTS in the VILLE was born out of community consultations around establishing an arts trail in Helensville to showcase the abundance of talented creatives in the area. Local artists favoured an annual event, and so ARTS in the VILLE was established. The event now celebrates and promotes Helensville's local artists and some from the wider community. It is presented through open studios, pop-up galleries or other display spaces, in venues within walking distance around the Helensville township.
The first ARTS in the VILLE took place on Labour Weekend in 2015, and was organised and self-funded by three passionate locals, Kura Geere-Watson, Jo Dixey and Denise Marshall. There were 22 artists presenting their work from 12 venues, pop-ups and studios. Advertising was done by letter drop, local newspaper articles and artists websites.
The annual ARTS in the VILLE Labour weekend event has grown steadily. Last year’s event was the largest to-date involving 75 artists, across 33 venues! In excess of 3,500 visitors attended over the three day weekend. We are now sponsored by Creative Communities, Auckland Council, North West District Business Association and local sponsors.
Yarn Bombing is a feature of the weekend, where the town is adorned with brightly coloured woll creations.
From Left: Kura Geere-Watson, Jo Dixey and Denise Marshall who started this great festival, during a knitting session back in 2015.
As you can see it is a very serious business!