Businesses get creative | Naracoorte art exhibition

MORE than 100 Naracoorte businesses got their creative juices flowing for the Naracoorte Regional Art Gallery's latest exhibition.

There were 122 entries received in the "Show off your Business" initiative, all of which were unveiled at the opening on Friday evening.

A crowd of more than 100 people came along to see what great ideas the various shops, services and industries were able to to come up with for their canvases.

There was a Dutch auction and bids were put on almost half of the art works.

Gallery board member Robyn Schinckel said she was thrilled with the response of the community.

"Some people really put a lot of work into it," she said. "There's some really amazing stuff...I never knew there were so many crafty people in Naracoorte.

"Everything will stay hanging for the month of June and bids are still open in the Dutch auction.

"It's really worth going to have a look."

The aim of the exhibition was to help businesses raise their own profiles while also promoting all that the gallery has to offer.

Mrs Schinckel said it definitely achieved that.

"The businesses have been amazingly supportive and it was really nice for them to be able to network with each other," she said.

"Half of the people there had actually never been through the gallery doors before and that was what it was all about.

"We, as a not-for-profit organisation, rely heavily on local businesses to be able to keep our doors open.

"We need the businesses in our town to thrive so we can survive."

Guest speaker Don Wray, of MiniJumbuk, opened the evening by talking about the conception of the Naracoorte Regional Art Gallery.

He reflected on the role of Marny Fenton, and her husband Garry, who were key players many years ago.

The Naracoorte Regional Cultural Trust was set up thanks to large donations made by many locals including the Fentons.

Bob and Mary Bainger also contributed greatly, as did MiniJumbuk, Ottoson Real Estate and the Naracoorte Rotary Club.

Many more businesses and individuals too jumped on board because they could see how the gallery would be of great benefit to the town.