A recent analysis of attendance figures by the New England Regional Art Museum (NERAM) inArmidale,New South Wales, has revealed that approximately 37,000 people visited NERAM during 2011, up 40% from 2010.
This is a significant increase and reinforces the important role NERAM plays in enriching the lives of residents of Armidale and surrounding communities, as well as visitors to the region.
“Last year we had a wonderful selection of exhibitions at NERAM, including ARTexpress, showcasing works from talented HSC students, and Almanac, an exhibition from the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney,” said NERAM director, Caroline Downer. “NERAM also continued to showcase the permanent collections – a highlight was the exhibition Iconic which brought together some of our most special works in the Hinton Collection.”
Public programs are also a drawcard and NERAM offers something for everyone. There are art classes for adults and children, school holiday workshops, workshops with visiting artists, school tours, art chats, family days and storeroom tours.
“Our two new initiatives proved to be popular too,” Downer said. “We launched Remembering with Art, a fortnightly “Art and Alzheimer’s” program supported by Home Nursing Group, which aims to improve the overall quality of life and general well-being for people living with dementia. And in October we held the Great Artplay Day. This event attracted over 300 kids who participated in art-based activities – imagine ladybird cupcakes and brightly coloured kites… it was certainly a fun day for families,”
The art museum’s revamped cafe, neramharvest, has also become an increasingly popular place for Armidalians to meet and relax over coffee or a meal on weekends and weekdays.