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2016 Theme: Art for Change

The 2016 Canterbury ArtsCon will take place from 6 to 9 September, 2016 at venues such as the Beaney House of Art and Knowledge, Canterbury Baptist Church and Warnborough College.

Like previous conferences, this year’s theme is another conundrum. “Change” is typically seen as making something different, developing it, and/or moving it from one place or state to another. But “change” can also refer to loose coins — the few pennies we have left over — or to money in general.

Therefore, the topic for CArtsCon 2016 will fuse these concepts into a lively debate:

  • Can art drive change (or movement or development)?
  • Can art change moods and minds?
  • Can and how is art created for very little money?
  • Is art created with a substantial “piece of change” (a lot of money) also worthwhile?
  • And…how do we create powerful arts movements with or without significant funds? How does money factor into the overall process?

Read more about it here. Check out the submission guidelines, and participate!


CArtsCon 2015: A Quick Review

WCCA 2015: (l-r) VP Dr Julian Ng with Robert Waters, Lord Mayor Sally Waters, President Dr Brenden Tempest-Mogg; eager delegates snapping the Mayor's speech; Kaitlin Roney, Jen Keretnick, Pen McElwee

CArtsCon 2015: (l-r) VP Dr Julian Ng with Robert Waters, Lord Mayor Sally Waters, President Dr Brenden Tempest-Mogg; eager delegates snapping the Mayor’s speech; Kaitlin Roney, Jen Keretnick, Pen McElwee

The third annual Canterbury Conference of the Arts brought international participants to Canterbury in July. The event was officially opened by the Lord Mayor Councillor Sally Waters and her escort, Robert Waters on Tuesday, 14th July, at the Canterbury Baptist Church. She welcomed delegates to the city and took time to chat with the artists who had exhibited their works.

WCCA 2015: (l-r) Food, drinks & camaraderie; Mark Jackson, Endia Plunkett, Betsy Aidinyantz, Joe Plunkett; Stan Bruce explains his paintings to the Lord Mayor.

CArtsCon 2015: (l-r) Food, drinks & camaraderie; Mark Jackson, Endia Plunkett, Betsy Aidinyantz, Joe Plunkett; Stan Bruce explains his paintings to the Lord Mayor.

Events took place at the Baptist Church, Warnborough College and the Beaney House of Art and Knowledge. Speakers from different continents spoke on a variety of topics based around this year’s theme of “Art as Illusion” covering art history, the fine arts, film, theatre and writing.

WCCA 2015: (l-r) Registration at Warnborough HQ; Dr Jill Kiefer opened with a plenary; Sonia Copeland Bloom talks about animating minibeasts; Dr Linda Wilde presents on Trompe l'Oeil.

CArtsCon 2015: (l-r) Registration at Warnborough HQ; Dr Jill Kiefer opened with a plenary; Sonia Copeland Bloom talks about animating minibeasts; Dr Linda Wilde presents on Trompe l’Oeil.

Dr Jill Kiefer from New York spoke about the blurring lines between art and illusion in her opening plenary. Canterbury-based entomologist, Sonia Copeland Bloom, spoke on using art, animation, music and creative writing to engage children with nature from an early age. Kristiene Clarke challenged the audience to decide if documentaries were filmic representations or illusions of real life, and wowed with anecdotes about her current film with Eddie Redmayne. Celina Senisterra used her background to showcase the importance of illusion in architecture, as did Chris Blaine who focused on Scandinavian church architecture.

WCCA 2015: (l-r) Shelley Bruce on being an artivista; Endia Plunkett weaves stories about the quilts of the underground railroad; Mark Jackson discusses Caspar David Friedrich's work; Stan Bruce paints whoever comes by.

CArtsCon 2015: (l-r) Shelley Bruce on being an artivista; Endia Plunkett weaves stories about the quilts of the underground railroad; Mark Jackson discusses Caspar David Friedrich’s work; Stan Bruce paints whoever comes by.

Various workshops were held on rag quilting, drawing, painting and creative writing.

WCCA 2015: (l-r) Egg tempera workshop; Figural drawing workshop; Gullah rag-quilting workshop; Dr Matina Chronopoulou shows off her rag-quilting handiwork.

CArtsCon 2015: (l-r) Egg tempera workshop; Figural drawing workshop; Gullah rag-quilting workshop; Dr Matina Chronopoulou shows off her rag-quilting handiwork.

Other countries represented at the conference included Australia, Canada, Germany, Ghana, India, Ireland, Nigeria and Switzerland. Many delegates had been to Canterbury before and relished the opportunity to return.

WCCA 2015: (l-r) Subashini Tremmel presented on the Carey Island community; Rosemary Berry asked if the preservation of relics and monuments was more important than that of human life; Kaitlin Roney looked at the evolution of the female nude; Kristiene Clarke asked if all filmic representation an illusion; George Stephenson waxes lyrical at the Café Book Reading and Signing event.

CArtsCon 2015: (l-r) Subashini Tremmel presented on the Carey Island community; Rosemary Berry asked if the preservation of relics and monuments was more important than that of human life; Kaitlin Roney looked at the evolution of the female nude; Kristiene Clarke asked if all filmic representation was an illusion; George Stephenson waxes lyrical at the Café Book Reading and Signing event.

Minister for Defence (Reserves) and Canterbury Member of Parliament, Julian Brazier, ended the conference on a high note with his take on the art of war and how using illusion could mean victory.

WCCA 2015: (l-r) Dr Balasubramanyam Chandramohan talks about transnational arts education; Dr Datiri Chumang introduces traditional motifs in Nigerian pottery; Penelope McElwee looks at 18th century architecture and paintings; Julian Brazier, MP delivers a tour-de-force history lesson on using illusion as a war strategy.

CArtsCon 2015: (l-r) Dr Balasubramanyam Chandramohan talks about transnational arts education; Dr Datiri Chumang introduces traditional motifs in Nigerian pottery; Penelope McElwee looks at 18th century architecture and paintings; Julian Brazier, MP delivers a tour-de-force history lesson on using illusion as a war strategy.

The Conference was an all-round success and plans are now underfoot for 2016.

WCCA 2015: Minister of Defence (Reserves) and Canterbury Member of Parliament, Julian Brazier (centre) poses with delegates after he hands out certificates of participation.

WCCA 2015: Minister of Defence (Reserves) and Canterbury Member of Parliament, Julian Brazier (centre) poses with delegates after he hands out certificates of participation.

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