Wishing you all kindness, good health and lots of laughter

Wishing you all kindness, good health and lots of laughter
Trisha Avery

Thank you to Meredith Sussex, chair of the Fishermans Bend Development Board, for sharing last month’s Montague Community Alliance column with her cohort on LinkedIn.

Other than how interesting and creative our Montague residents and businesses are, I wondered whether this sharing was because we are using the moniker “Creative Montague” which is not based on any advice or support from government, but more the hard work and determination of those living and working in the Montague Precinct.

It is noteworthy, that these superbly creative people are working in the commercial creative space, an extraordinary feat in and of itself, considering almost two years of restrictive work practices.

However, wouldn’t it be right and proper to create accessibly priced and designed artistic spaces, for not only young emerging artists, but older artists whose work is still prolific but may no longer be at the front of institutional support.

We know all the properties and land are privately owned but if we want to be internationally respected and famed for creativity in the design of these precincts, then surely we need to consider how to encourage our creative communities both commercial and non-commercial to live and work in the Montague Precinct of Fishermans Bend.

And just before we meet our featured Montaguan, please note developers and planners that flood mitigation, particularly along Gladstone St, is still very challenging and has been ever since the first buildings were erected in the late 1800s. Time to let us know what you are going to do about it?

To end the year, we are featuring in “Meet a Montaguan” the extraordinary Helen Katavatis. Helen and her husband Nick are stalwarts of the INDUSTRY Business Hub at 87 Gladstone St. What a delight to feature her and her work …

Who are you, tell us a little about yourself?

I am an expressionist/abstract artist and founder and designer of Cubec Clothing – an Australian-made women’s suiting and shirt brand established in 1999. The brand is renowned for stunning printed silk and cotton shirts and beautifully cut suiting in high end lux fabrics. My artwork has been an intrinsic part all my life and is strongly reflected in our standout designs and colour combinations that are purchased and loved by our clients worldwide.

What brought you to live or work in the Montague Precinct?

We had three store locations in Melbourne’s CBD for 20 years and during this period we grew our business with an extensive demographic client base and required a creative space to purchase where we could operate our business and incorporate an art studio. Industry Business Hub provided this opportunity when the building was completed in the Montague Precinct in 2011.

What are the best and/or most interesting things about working or living in Montague?

Its proximity to the CBD, the iconic South Melbourne Market is in walking distance, accessible to all arterial roots and minutes from the light rail and a bus route. We have fabulous food choices and outstanding coffee. The most interesting thing about INDUSTRY Business Hub is that there is a large selection of businesses which include architects, web and app designers, advertising companies, fashion and art, photographers and lawyers and many more.

How does working or living in Montague affect your quality of life/work?

We enjoy the close proximity to our home and to other services and lifestyle the area offers.

What are the challenges of working or living in Montague?

Parking is and will continue to be a major issue with more high-rise coming on stream. Peak hour traffic is also frustrating on Montague St, as is the constant flooding at the end of Gladstone St.

If you could change something about the precinct, what would it be?

Improve the council greenery on the foot paths, keep high-rise to a maximum of eight levels, not 30 as per the adjoining building to INDUSTRY Business Hub •

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