Hive alive – but not for long

The pending wind-up of a trial creative arts space in Perth by the end of 2014 has led to calls for a permanent youth arts venue in the city.

The Hive: Creative Arts Space is a venue run by Propel Youth Arts Western Australia for 12 to 26 year olds to showcase their events, participate in the arts, meet and share ideas.

The Hive has been supported by the Department of Culture and the Arts, Perth Theatre Trust and State Theatre Centre of WA.

Propel Youth Arts marketing manager Lisa D’Andrea said The Hive was developed to test the waters for a permanent creative space for young people in central Perth.

The Hive has been used for a variety of events and activities, including the KickstART Festival, MOSAIC workshops, Runway to Paper workshops and the Home Is Where My Heart Is exhibition.

It has also been hired by arts organisations and young people for exhibitions, gigs, workshops, performances, forums and artists’ talks.

Upcoming photographer Jarrad Seng, 26, recently used the space to hold his latest exhibition.

“When I was looking for an exhibition venue, there weren’t really many great options available to me,” Seng said.

“There are a few commercial galleries around, but they are not very accessible unless you are a very established artist.

“To hire them you need to have a lot of money, which as we know, is not a lot of artists.”

Research undertaken by Propel shows that many young people find it difficult to find a venue that is both central and affordable.

Seng said he was looking for a space that was central and it was just a bonus that it was run by Propel with a youth focus.

“It’s a win-win situation,” he said.

“I got to help Propel promote the space and hopefully help them keep it for longer.

“In turn, I got to use a great space in Northbridge that was cost-effective and was giving support to other young artists in Perth.”

Jordan Grosser at the entrance to The Hive

Jordan Grosser at the entrance to The Hive

High school student Jordan Grosser, 17, said she had heard about The Hive by being involved in other arts programs in Perth.

“There’s nothing else like it in Perth,” she said.

“It’s a shame that soon I won’t be able to go there.

“I like the fact that it’s in the city and is accessible for anyone who just wants to come in, hang out and be creative.”

Jordan said a more permanent arts space for young artists would be good.

“It’s a really good thing for upcoming artists who don’t have the resources themselves,” she said.

Seng agreed.

“I think it’s a shame the lease is ending,” he said.

“I haven’t spoken to Propel and don’t know if there is a possibility to extend the lease, but for now I think it’s been a pretty great addition to youth art in Perth.

“Having an accessible space for young people is awesome and I would really like to see it continue.”

Ms D’Andrea said the positive public response to The Hive indicated there was a great need for a similar venue in Perth.

“We have had a number of enquiries about hiring The Hive well into 2015,” she said.

“The space is booked out until our lease ends at the end of the year.”

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