We share the waterways that run beneath our feet: water is vital to our sense of common ground.
A free public art festival situated in the Hutt Valley, Wellington Saturday 25 February – Saturday 4 March 2017, Common Ground explores our relationship with water – the Hutt River Te Awakairangi, its streams, springs and the aquifer beneath – and its importance to our sense of place, health and wellbeing.
All the projects are about your participation and there is a packed programme of events happening day and night for the eight days. Check out the calendar of events, and the project information. The festival takes over as its Hub and extends from here out along the waterways of Hutt City.
The Hutt provides water to the entire Wellington region. At the same time globally we face significant issues in terms of climate change and water quality, water ecology and its ownership.
A new kind of public art festival, five artist projects have been commissioned across the Hutt touching off the issues and many key locations relating to water in the Hutt Valley. They are connected through a Common Ground Hub in the Lower Hutt CBD at Central City Arcade 49-51 Queens Arcade (a three minute walk from the Dowse Art Museum), and a wide-ranging public programme of activities and other artist projects between the Dowse Art Museum and the riverbank. Get involved through fun activities, learn more and join in daytime and evening discussions and workshops.
The festival is produced by public art and urban revitalisation organisation Letting Space in partnership with Hutt City Council.
Happening for eight action-packed days of free events for all ages, come and participate. To download a festival map with calendar: 11067 CG Groundwater Poster B FINAL v3
Common Ground was began in 2015 by Hutt City Council, and in 2017 is being produced in partnership with public art organisation Letting Space. The name, Common Ground was chosen to reflect the inclusive nature of the art projects, suggesting projects that encourage participation and make links with local geography, history and communities.
The 2017 Team
Letting Space: Mark Amery, Sophie Jerram and Helen Kirlew Smith
Hutt City Council Project Leader: Pippa Sanderson, Community Arts and Cultural Advisor
Production Manager: Debbie Fish
Assistant Production Manager: Linda Lee
Publicity: Goldfish Creative
Designer: Beppo Wallace, Dink Design
Massey University Interns: Robert Laking and Emerita Paik
Volunteers: Christine Fagan, Johannes Mueller-Welschof, Anastasia Rosamund, Victoria Thompson, Mary Hutchinson, Tamasin Falconrt, Ruth Prentice, Trevor Kohring, Ulrike Fund and Maíra Müller.
Commercial Space Broker: About Space.
Funders: Hutt City Council, Creative New Zealand and Chartwell Trust
Common Ground Hub partners: Hutt City Libraries, Enviroschools, Wellington Access Radio and Wellington Water
Project Partners: Dowse Art Museum, GNS Science, Greater Wellington Regional Council, Wellington Water and Kiwirail.
Commissioned projects: Stu Farrant, Murray Hewitt, Angela Kilford, Bruce McNaught, Bruce Mahalski, Johanna Mechen, Gabby O’Connor, Kedron Parker, Julian Priest, Paula Warren, and Aliyah Winter
Public programme projects: Birgit Bachler, Josephine Garcia Jowett, Andrea Selwood, Stringbean Puppets, Liana Stupples, Mix, Hutt on High, Wellington Water, Waiora Wainuiomata, Christine Fagan and Dionne Ward
Other partners: Te runanga o Te Atiawa, Resenes, Friends of the Waiwhetu Stream, Friends of the Hutt River, First Assembly, the community of Wainuiomata, Hutt Art Society, Whitebait Connection, Barbarian Productions, Sustainable Business Network, Boffa Miskell, the many artists, schools and groups participating in the creation of the commissioned projects, Wellington Independent Arts Trust and Hutt City Council’s Community Arts and Culture Advisory Group.
Participating Schools and youth groups: Hutt Valley High, Thumbs Up, Rata Street School, Hutt Central, Naenae Clubhouse, Taita Clubhouse, Avalon School, Te Ara Whanui, Waora and Wilford Schools
Photographers: Dionne Ward (all images on this site unless otherwise noted), Adam Dransfield, Johanna Mechen and Mick Finn