The push to breathe life into Wollongong's arts and culture scene continued yesterday as a new pop-up gallery was launched in Wollongong Central.
For the next two months, four young Illawarra artists will encourage shoppers to absorb a bit of culture as they browse, displaying an array of pen and ink drawings, dreamy analogue photos and vibrant oil and watercolour studies.
The gallery, on the first floor bridge link of Wollongong Central, is a collaboration between centre owner GPT and a local artists group, OKYO.
When Bulli-based artist Jessica Bee was approached about the project, she jumped at the chance to show her analogue photographs - mostly taken with plastic lomography cameras - to a new audience.
"I think sometimes [people] think they need to go to Melbourne or Sydney to find good artists, but there are actually a lot of really good artists in Wollongong that just need an outlet or an opportunity.
"We're seeing a lot of stuff like this happening at the moment and hopefully it just snowballs from here," she said.
Austinmer artist Dani Green indulged her love of architecture by drawing buildings like Novotel Northbeach, Greater Union cinema and the old Lonestar restaurant at North Gong Hotel for the show.
"I don't think people here really look at Wollongong - I didn't for a long time - but when I started drawing these images I realised how cool some of the buildings were," she said.
"Our little city is really changing and there's lots of cool architecture that people tend to ignore."
Centre manager Dean Young said residents could expect to see more art projects popping up as GPT Group developed its plan for Globe Lane and opened the $200 million West Keira development next year.
"There's just so much talent in Wollongong that we probably haven't seen before," he said.
"We will do as much as we can as often as we can, and the door will always be open from our point of view to showcase art and creativity.
"We have 25,000 people coming through our doors every day, so we are in a unique position to showcase that - and it's good for us as well because customers love it."
The pop-up gallery will be on display until the end of June.