A creative community; a space between

Paper Mountain - July 27, 2017

Recently, I sent an email out about how far our community has come and that creativity surrounds us all. Now, I want to briefly cover how our community actually grew, and our vision for Paper Mountain.

In 2011, Paper Mountain was founded and opened by four talented young arts graduates with the idea of being a place to support emerging, experimental and contemporary art in WA. This is still at the core of what we do and guides every decision we make.

As an artist-run-initiative, we are predominantly self-funded. As an organisation, we are supported by an incredibly dedicated and talented group of volunteers. As a team, we are recognised for our gallery program, affordable studios, and event space.

We are also very lucky to have a dedicated team of volunteers, many of whom give much of their time to plan our exhibitions, design our catalogues and build our studio community. More often than not, this time is on top of work, studies and personal creative projects our volunteers have.

I’m always amazed as to why people give so much of their time to help us out and it comes down to one thing: creative communities.

Paper Mountain has a strong following because we have grown to become appreciated by people who seek out and want to be a part of a larger, more connected, creative community. This came about because over the last few years, we have increased the amount of guidance we provide to the artists we work alongside and the work they present.

We collaborate, and provide advice from professional practice, to use of space to how to best engage an audience. We support an environment for individuals to safely explore the issues they are contending with and the forces they wanted to respond to.

In the last year, we’ve had more events than we’d ever have – from fringe shows, to poetry nights, to book launches to zine gatherings. And we continue to work with creatives to deliver workshops for anyone to learn a new skill, whether that’s calligraphy or crafting.

As such, we have extended our vision. No longer are we simply supporting emerging, experimental and contemporary artists, we are now a place for passionate, creative individuals, across a multitude of disciplines to engage in an artistic dialogue to further push the integrity of the artistic and cultural world.

On top of being an Artist Run Initiative, we are a community-operated space.

Reflecting on our place over the last few years, we decided to theme our Art Auction this year as ‘a space between’. Come along and RSVP here – with works donated from emerging to award-winning artists, see some of the interpretations and let’s have a conversation about space.


Johnny Doan