Helen de Bruyn writes:
To Whom It May Concern:
I am a supporter of the Newcastle Art Gallery as well as a concerned citizen of Newcastle.
I have concerns about the lack of information regarding significant potential benefits to businesses in Newcastle from cultural tourism.
As someone who has always travelled for art, I know how much I spend on airfares, taxis, hire cars, accommodation, restaurants, shopping and on and on.
I know how little money I actually ever spend on entry to art exhibitions, the exhibitions are relatively inexpensive.
Please see attached information about the cultural tourism dollars in Adelaide as well as the link below - Sydney Morning Herald 4 April 2013 - about cultural tourism dollars in Canberra.
I am dismayed at the thought that the business community in Newcastle is unaware of potential tourism dollars that will certainly eventuate with a refurbished Newcastle Art Gallery.
I am dismayed that the business community stands to lose those significant cultural tourism dollars.
Some examples where art has changed cities would be:
- Bilbao, Spain - Guggenheim Art Gallery, drawing millions of visitors to a post industrial town.
- Hobart, Tasmania - MONA Significant numbers of out of state and International tourists to Tasmania, since the opening of MONA.
- Bendigo, NSW: Bendigo Art Gallery - Mounted the Grace Kelly: Style Icon exhibition - organised by the Victoria & Albert Museum, London and the Grimaldi Forum, Monaco.
- Bendigo and Newcastle would be able to share art exhibitions as they are significantly far enough apart to draw visitors from different areas.
- Canberra, ACT - NGA, recently mounted the Toulouse-Lautrec Paris & the Moulin Rouge exhibition that brought an estimated $37 million to the Canberra business coffers.
If the planned deveopment of Newcastle Art Gallery went ahead, it would be able to mount significant exhibitions that would attract untold numbers of visitors to this region, who would then spend untold amounts of money, not only in the Art Gallery, but in the surrounding businesses.
Please do not let the redevelopment of the Newcastle Art Gallery slip through our fingers and deny Newcastle and the Newcastle business sector their opportunity to cash in on lucrative cultural tourism dollars.
This must surely appeal to the business minded?
Council will meet on Tuesday 9 April 2013 at 5.30pm in Council Chambers, 2nd Floor, City Hall.
There is to be a vote on the decision to rescind the motion of support by Council (unanimous 12 February 2013) for the redevelopment of the Newcastle Art Gallery.
If you are concerned about the redevelopment of the Art Gallery, please attend the Council meeting or email the Liberal councillors (Cr Lisa Tierney firstname.lastname@example.org, Cr Sharon Waterhouse email@example.com, Cr Brad Luke firstname.lastname@example.org), independent Cr Andrea Rufo email@example.com Cr Allan Robinson firstname.lastname@example.org and/or the Lord Mayor email@example.com to register your support for the Art Gallery to become the significant Newcastle bussiness driver it can and should be.
Sign the Petition here: http://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/newcastle-city-council-save-the-art-gallery-redevelopment-proposal#
Helen de Bruyn.