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HOME IS WHERE THE ART IS

11 Jun 2013

HOME IS WHERE THE ART IS Image

While residents and local workers have been enjoying Boyd’s library, cafe, childcare and parenting facilities, up the uneven staircase a creative hub rivaling anywhere else in Melbourne has quickly developed.

The studios at Boyd are a hive of activity, with painters, jewellers and designers calling the space home.

Last month Southbank Local News spoke to some of the artists who together make Boyd the last hot-spot in the Melbourne creative scene.

Deborah Dickson (pictured) gets the best of both worlds at Boyd because she is a Southbank resident and painter and is thrilled to have a studio so close to home.

“It’s great because I live on Queensbridge St, so I can just walk down to the studio. I feel like a very lucky artist,” Ms Dickson said.

“As an artist you are often in solitary confines while you paint, so it’s nice to have a community feeling in the building. There’s always people around to have a chat if you need a break,” she added.

Ms Dickson also spoke about the community centre from the perspective of a resident, saying: “As a resident it’s really nice to see Boyd turning into a community hub so quickly.”

Just down the hall is award-winner jeweller, Blanche Tilden. Ms Tilden said the central location of Southbank’s Boyd centre was a huge advantage.

“It’s fantastic to have a studio in the middle of the city with rent I can afford and to be surrounded by so many artists. It creates a great little community,” Ms Tilden said.

“It’s also really good to be in the arts precinct here in Southbank. When there are international visitors and curators in town, it’s not too far to come and visit my studio, which wouldn’t be possible if we weren’t so close to all the arts institutions,” she added.

She also explained the ease of which she could get to work at Boyd, saying: “There’s probably a misconception about working at Boyd, but really, it’s just a great place to knuckle down and get on with my work.”

Simone LeAmon, a designer, loves the artistic community that has been created here at Boyd.

“The great thing is being surrounded by colleagues and peers, and that we are all professional creatives. It creates this amazing support network,” Ms LeAmon explained.

“It’s extraordinary creative DNA here on the top floor. It’s a really special place to work.”

She also said spaces like Boyd, being offered at affordable rent, was so important for the artistic community in Melbourne.

“A lot of artists are finding it increasingly difficult to find affordable space, especially so close to the city. Melbourne is a creative city, but where possible, creative people need that extra support. I think everyone can see the great value of places like Boyd,” Ms LeAmon said.

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