Saturday, May 2, 2009

It's come what MAY.

If affordable housing is the new religion this millennium then we are the Lords Shepard’s. Bill and George was founded on providing affordable studio space for artists, but what the hell, if you can’t afford to live in the city then what fricking use is a studio?!!!

Because of this, BNG crew monger Rebecca has become singularly focussed on radical housing solutions for  RIGHT NOW. This involves fraternising with an emerging consortium of stakeholders with the power to purchase land in the city and implement a thing called a Community Land Trust. To find out more about this STAY TUNED. We will be presenting a chatroom event at bill and george SHORTLY with questions and answers and special guests who know all about this business. Serious stimulating. A home among the gum trees, a verandah out the back….a rockin chair! And a community vege patch. Oh stop it…I’m delirious….


Ex-BNG resident artist Ben Riding is displaying himself in the Grant Pirrie window all this week and next. Check it out:


By George! Applications open now

Check it:

International Artists Residence 

Turin, Italy

The Diogene group of artists is promoting the international competition “Diogene Urbanbivouac”, open to italian and foreign artists. The artist selected will be hosted in a small housing unit or Bivouac , built in an “interstitial” area of the city, that will be the artist’s living and working environment.

The first residence program has been held in 2007 with the artists Giorgio Andreotta Calò and Mario Tomè; the chinese artist Pak Sheung Chuen won the first official competition held in autumn 2008.

Deadline: May 23, 2009

Period of stay: three to six weeks between September 21 and November 7 2009

Budget: up to 7.500 euros (attendance reward, travel and living expenses, Production expenses for the project/s)

PERFORMANCE OPPORTUNITY: The vanishing point gallery in newtown is hosting a world enviro day film night..... it's happening on friday 5th june at at the vanishing point gallery from 6-9pm. we are asking artists to respond to the theme of climate emergency!!  this is a one night only event and i reckon it could be pretty great. i'm contacting you guys to see whether you are interested in submitting a work for the night! we are looking for short films or performances. duration should be say 20 minutes or less. (sorry we can't have any other sort of works because it's just for one night and there will be another show happening in the gallery at the same time )

on the night there will be  a guest speaker and then show a bunch of artist's responses to "climate emergency" in the form of short films or performances. please consider making a work for this night or maybe passing this info on to anyone you think might be interested.  For more info contact Ingrid at


Ex-Mekanarky crew calling for interest from artists for new warehouse in Arncliffe.

From Dillon: We've just had our offer on a warehouse in Arncliffe accepted by the

landlord, and are looking for Artists to rent studios.

It is an older style warehouse on 2 levels, rollerdoor access on both

levels, with good light, kitchen and some office type rooms.

The lower floor has a concrete floor, the upper one, wood. There is 3 phase

power in the building.

We will be renting spaces at around $1.75 psm per week, which gives you a

7m x 8m space for around $100 per week.

This would include most amenities, plus broadband, electricity would

probably be worked out separately though.

The space is currently an open warehouse space, so first in get the most

say in the studio layout.

The space should become available in 4 - 6 weeks time, but viewings can be

arranged prior to that.

I'll be posting more info, as the project develops, probably through the

old mekanarky website (, and through facebook and



The crisis and beyond: for a stronger and fairer housing system

A conference – Thursday 2 July 2009, 9.00 am to 4.00 pm – Mitchell Theatre, Sydney Mechanics School of Arts, Level 1, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney

Beyond the housing affordability crisis, beyond the global economic crisis … how can we make our housing system stronger and fairer?

Housing policy in Australia has been through a time of dramatic transformation, with the introduction of a raft of new initiatives from the Commonwealth Government, a new era of cooperation between Commonwealth and state/territory governments, and new instruments for funding housing assistance.

Shelter NSW is presenting a one-day conference in Sydney on Thursday 2 July 2009 to explore these issues and more:

  • New Commonwealth Government housing initiatives
  • NSW Government’s housing initiatives and implementation of Commonwealth reforms
  • Public housing – is it to be limited to a role as the housing of last resort?
  • Community housing – what is its capacity to become more than a service specified and subcontracted by government?
  • The private sector – is there a crisis, and how does the tax system affect price and supply?
  • Homeless people – will they really get their day in the sun?
  • The working poor – will they continue to be the household that housing policy forgot?
  • Tenants, both public and private – what is needed to create homes?

Speakers include:

  • The Hon. Tanya Plibersek MP, Commonwealth Minister for Housing
  • The Hon. David Borger MP, NSW Minister for Housing
  • Mike Allen, Director-General of Housing NSW
  • John Mant, lawyer and urban policy consultant
  • Yuri Grbich, formerly Professor at Law, University of New South Wales and founding director of Atax, UNSW
  • Kath Hulse, Associate Professor, Institute for Social Research, Swinburne Institute of Technology
  • Sue Cripps, Chief Executive Officer, Homelessness NSW
  • Carol Croce, Executive Director, Community Housing Federation of Australia
  • Adam Farrar, Executive Director, NSW Federation of Housing Associations.

Who should attend?

Community welfare organisations, social housing tenants, providers of rental housing, tenant organisations and activists, and policymakers are invited to attend.


Mitchell Theatre, Sydney Mechanics School of Arts, Level 1, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney (5 minutes' walk from Town Hall and Museum stations, nearest cross streets are Bathurst and Park streets). Click here for a map.


9.00 am to 4.00 pm, Thursday 2 July 2009. Check-in on the day of the conference opens at 8.00 am.


For a registration form, click here.

Registrations close on June 26.

Calling all community activists! School for Citizens at CPD

Ever wanted to know how to influence decision-makers about an issue that matters to you or your community? Are you somewhat baffled by the policy process? Want to know what really goes on inside the mysterious policy-making factory?

The Centre for Policy Development's (CPD) School for Citizens is a new workshop designed to help community groups, non-government organisations and not-for-profits better understand AND affect policy processes.

With short tutorials from media professionals, government staffers and social activist and policy expert Eva Cox, the School for Citizens will give community activists and change agents a basic understanding of the policy cycle and the skills needed to put forward their ideas for change.

The first School for Citizens workshop will be held on Friday May 22, 2009 at the Sydney Mechanic School for Arts - Level 1, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney. Applications open now – places limited! Applications close May 9, 2009 at 5pm.

Visit for more information or contact for an application form. Also be sure to pass this email on to any friends or colleagues you know that could benefit from an insight into the world of policy.

The Centre for Policy Development's School for Citizens – your ideas can change Australia