Festival kickstarts hot events season

By Anne-Marie Emerson

Ten days of all things glass will kick off this Saturday with the start of the annual Wanganui Festival of Glass.

Organiser Helen Craig said this year's festival, from Saturday to Monday, October 22, was set to be the biggest yet, linking in with other exciting Wanganui events around the same time.

"We have the national biennial glass conference, the Japanese festival, the national mosaic art exhibition, the James K Baxter tribute festival and the Hoop Nation basketball tournament," Ms Craig said.

The festival headquarters was The Hub, at 45 Taupo Quay, near Caffeinator. There, festival-goers could get information, buy glass art works, and see some of the glass art on display.

The festival officially opens at 5.30pm on Saturday at The Hub. The first major event will be Blowing In The Dark - a fun event run by Whanganui Glass School students.

"This is basically glass-blowing as entertainment. The students will be pouring molten glass and blowing over-sized bubbles and so on," Ms Craig said.

Tickets for this event were limited.

Missing this year would be the display of glass in shop windows on Victoria Ave, but Ms Craig said four free public glass art exhibitions would replace it.

The Hub would feature an exhibition of glass works from the Whanganui Glass School's students, as well as the school's 2012 graduate artist in residence, Jo Conroy.

An exhibition by Wanganui Glass Group members and New Zealand Society of Glass Artists would be held at the Community Arts Centre. The national mosaic art exhibition would be held at Left Bank Gallery, and glass artist Claudia Borella would exhibit at the Quay Gallery.

Ms Craig said art lovers would be excited: "It's just going to be huge."

- Wanganui Chronicle

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