Ceramics by Melisa Jasa | Image credit: Artist Open House Fremantle
If you’ve ever wondered what some of Fremantle’s most beautiful homes look like on the inside (who hasn’t!) or how art can make a house come alive, this year’s Artist Open House Fremantle (AOHF) could be the event for you.
Being held on the weekend of 13-15 November, you can have a good ol’ fashioned snoop through seven of Fremantle’s most beautiful homes while perusing the wares of 37 local artists.
A big advocate of marketing the arts, we had a chat with AOHF Founder and Director Cathrina Read about starting AOHF, making art accessible for everyone and the joy of seeing how art can make a home look and feel.
TELL US HOW AOHF STARTED?
While the idea for AOHF had been brewing in my mind for some years, I began work on the project when I noticed that a couple of my artist friends weren’t selling as successfully as they used to, and that one or two local art galleries had shut their doors. I was now more than confident that there had to be alternate ways of marketing the arts. I knew that there was stunning work being produced, I suspected there was still money to be spent, and I knew from my introduction into the world of interior design that there was a keen interest in renovating and styling homes.
I figured that marrying the arts with the world of interiors (where they often end up anyway!) might be the answer. By showing art in a real residential environment, you are putting it in a place where many people are able to relate to it.
AOHF has a focus on making art accessible and affordable to a large number of people. I wish for people who may not normally visit a commercial art gallery, to come to AOHF and visit a real home and understand how the art makes the space feel and look.
HOW MANY HOUSES WILL BE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC THIS YEAR?
This year is our second AOHF event. We are opening seven homes and showing the work of 37 artists. One of the homes will be a Styled Home—meaning the house will be completed emptied, then styled head to toe by collaborator and stylist Jo Carmichael. Everything in the home, art included, will be for sale. This is a first for WA and I’m very excited by this collaboration.
HOW DO YOU PICK THE ARTISTS?
We have 37 artists showing this year including one textile artist, our first jewellery designer, and a select handful of ceramicists. We like to select mostly local artists as there’s talent locally and because it’s nice for the visitors to meet our artists during the event. We also like to have a broad variety of work, to appeal to a large number of people. I also believe in showing established artists alongside emerging artists which may be an unusual concept, but as long as the work has artistic merit, and fits in with the overall look of the show, then it’s a likely candidate.
WHY SHOULD PERTH PEOPLE CHECK OUT THE EVENT?
Because AOHF is created for everyone! There is a broad range of art being shown in a cross section of houses (townhouse, converted warehouse, architecturally-designed new build, renovated cottage, artist studio) with an equally wide range of price points. There is literally something for everyone. And if art is just not your cup of tea, then you might enjoy the sneak peek into someone else’s home!
All the homes are within walking distance of each other, so that visitors can walk between the homes at an easy and leisurely pace. There are multiple coffee shops and boutiques in the neighbourhood too, so it’s easy to make a nice morning or afternoon out of it.
Check out the AOHF site for an event guide and more information on the event.
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