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Hape Kiddle opens Bidgee Studio

Bidgee Studio is the public workspace of Griffith-based artist Hape Kiddle, open Tuesday to Friday 11am to 5pm and Saturday 11am to 4pm, as well as by appointment through Facebook. The studio is located at the corner of Bridge Road and Mackay Avenue.

After a successful exhibition at Griffith Regional Art Gallery last year, Kiddle wanted a venue for his handiwork. "I'm hoping to educate the market for jewellery.

"When you hold an object you have a different relationship than when you see it online."

Kiddle strives in his artwork to achieve an inherent beauty which seems to come naturally through presenting stories which encompass nature, dreamscapes and traditional Maori symbolism.

The symbol of a girl riding a carp, an image which came to him during the flooding of Yenda, featured in an exhibition responding to that event at the Griffith Regional Art Gallery earlier this year.

"Many artists in the region have exhibited here," says Kiddle of the history in local arts at the former Griffith Cottage Gallery site. He plans to host events, explaining "I want to facilitate connections through the local community. I've experienced the richness that comes from a healthy culture."

Kiddle cites the mentoring programs he's been involved with as informing this new venture. "There are people in my life who have supported me to become an artist. Hopefully I can offer something to grow local culture too."

There are plans for classes that will introduce jewellery making. He sees opportunities like helping couples make their own wedding rings.

"All people have ideas, you just have to learn how to execute them. Learning keeps the brain and the soul alive."

A showcase of Griffith talent

Six artists discuss their work