ART-traction: The Art of Creative Spaces

This week I would like to write an ode to the humble art box.

Easily dismissed as inconsequential and twee, the art box is often overlooked by audiences.

Until I got over thinking they were versions of model ships in glass bottles, I was one of these people.

How the tables have turned – I absolutely adore art boxes.

The surprise discovery of one indented in a dim wall somewhere, or next to the door of a bar are the most fun!

The engagement between unsuspecting audiences and artists is justification for more of them; the fact they usually involve the most cleverly intricate installations is just further reinforcement.

One of the biggest clusters of art boxes in the city in the Rooftop Art Space at the entry of Curtain House’s Rooftop Bar.

As if it wasn’t enough to have a bar with good cider, a rooftop cinema, Heavenly Bodies dance raves and mulled wine for the winter months, it’s also a gallery.

Such overachievers.

The Rooftop Art Space compromises nine custom-made and all-weather art boxes open to submissions from both established and emerging artists.

It aims to inspire and facilitate artists, positioning their work in a setting of high exposure and hipster credibility.

What’s more, if your submission is accepted the space is free to use with only a 20 per cent commission applied to sales.


Platform Gallery is another popular example of art boxes elevated to the deserving level of gallery.

Lining the subway passage between Degraves Street and Flinders Street Station, thousands of commuters are treated to a rotating program of exhibitions, all while on the way to their morning coffees.

Platform Gallery is hosting their next opening this Friday, June 7.

This latest exhibition will feature three artists, Jacqui Shelton’s Waves are Just Part of an Ocean, Laura Skerlj’s Mystic Terrain, and Darcey Bella Arnold’s Event Horizon.

Head down on Friday night – gallery openings make for ideal pre-drinks after all – between 6-8pm to mingle with like minded art-box enthusiasts, meet the artists and most likely be handed a free glass of champagne.

Those art boxes pull through.

Other similar sites of interest to creative people can be found at Creative Spaces, a fabulous website for finding hip studio and gallery spaces to view and/or rent.

Laura Phillips


Catalyst has been the student publication of RMIT University since 1944. We may be older than your parents but we’re still going strong!

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