Plans are under way for a "pop-up" artist village to be established on land owned by Lands Trust Masterton on the corner of Queen and Bruce streets -- formerly the site of a garden centre.

Announcing the plans yesterday, chairwoman of Lands Trust Masterton, Leanne Southey, said space in the village would be available, at nominal rents, for use by artists and art organisations wishing to showcase and/or sell their work.

"Lands Trust will be calling a meeting of interested parties in March, and we will talk to the arts community about the concept, a co-ordinator and operational procedures."

She said the trust would landscape the area and refurbished shipping containers would be used by artisans.


The village would complement the Maori arts, crafts and carving learning centre Te Patukituki o Wairarapa, currently housed in the adjoining building, the next door Aratoi and nearby King Street Artworks in Masterton's cultural precinct.

Being close to the Information Centre, Queen Elizabeth Park and the swimming pool complex, the village was expected to become another attraction for locals and visitors.

The trust would now be approaching and working with the Masterton District Council on the process required to create the pop-up village.

The village is expected to start operations later in the year.

In the meantime, the site will be used for an exhibition of painted stones -- similar to those at the former Featherston Military Training Camp.

Schools in the Wairarapa have been invited to make stone decorations to form a temporary art exhibition which could be dismantled and re-erected back at participating schools. The stone artwork would complement the Featherston Camp exhibition on show at Aratoi until July 31.