Harbinger Consultants

Culture + Complexity + Change

EVENTS | Great Getting Together

Over the G20 weekend, 14-16 November, Great Get Togethers were held across Brisbane’s suburbs. As part of the Human team, Harbinger Consultants played a role as Cultural Producer for three of the events for Department of Premier and Cabinet as part of G20 Cultural Celebrations. The three events were scheduled for Chermside, Sandgate and Rocks Riverside Park but due to anticipated extreme heat the final event was cancelled.

Each event was curated to reflect and engage their local communities. In Chermside, at 7th Brigade Park, several northside sporting and recreational organisations, including Girl Guides, PCYC, Kurbingui Sporting Association, Flipside Circus and Queensland Cricket, presented activities for all fitness levels and ages. The program of activities featured giant games, boxing displays, circus, geocaching and more. Creative activities, led by artists and arts groups, featured weaving on a giant knitting nancy and community loom, small handcraft projects, and a breakdance workshops and competition. An intimate vintage and secondhand market was presented by Suitcase Rummage and Ecclectea. Delectable tastes were also on offer from the culturally diverse street food vans and stalls. Highlights of the day included the Flash Mob Jogs by Kurbingui Sporting Association and performances by Wakka-Gubbi Dance Troupe. The day’s soundtrack was designed by DJ Bacon who was upbeat and offbeat under the gum trees.

Wakka Gubbi Dance Troupe

My Aunty Anna’s giant knitting nancy

Kurbingui Sporting Association Flash Mob Jog

Suitcase Rummage and Crafternoon

Sandgate had a busy day on Saturday with a community organised event, Our20, highlighting local concerns about sustainability, enterprise and change. Then the Great Get Together at Einbunpin Lagoon followed by a Town Hall Session featuring Halfway kept the village humming and dancing until late. In Sandgate, local artists and performers were a major feature of the program with Rick Thomson-Jones creating one of his impressive sand sculptures, Sandgate Historical Society sharing local history and stories, and My Aunty Anna again set up the community loom and giant knitting nancy. The silent disco was mixed by DJ Bacon and Maryke del Castillo wandered through the crowds with her travelling Incredible Flea Circus. A market buzzed with Brisstyle indie craftmakers, community groups and street food. North East Welcomes Asylum Seekers were there providing information and raising funds for their continuing efforts in assisting new arrivals to the area. In the rotunda, Polytoxic set up origami boat-making workshops with Busty Beatz as part of the Trade Winds project. The program finale was Polytoxic’s performance of Trade Winds featuring projections which illuminated two dancers.

Polytoxic origami boat making workshop with Busty Beatz, assisted by Natalie Billing

The Incredible Flea Circus

Silent disco

Trade Winds performed by Polytoxic

With ample opportunities for creativity, activity and festivity, there was something for everyone at these specially curated and designed events. The events were intended to highlight the vibrancy, diversity and connectedness of Brisbane’s suburban communities, offering an opportunity to enjoy the long weekend vibe in a relaxed and social setting. Through our side projects, such as Enabling Suburbs and our recent ebook I spy … scenes from micro-suburbia, our work is attentive to the needs and challenges of working in and with suburban communities, recognising that they are distinctly different from village-styled suburbs and inner urban areas. The differences can be celebrated and woven into engagement strategies. We endeavour to imbue a cultural and asset based approach suburban and urban, regional and remote living as part of a transformative and regenerative drive. Culture is integral to urban strategy and urban advantage, so the adoption of a cultural approach to urban planning requires different ways of thinking about the city and place from the viewpoint and experience of communities. This viewpoint and experience was central to the approach Harbinger contributed to the Great Get Togethers.


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