|Tuesday 5 January 1999|
NEW ART GALLERY OVERWHELMING SUPPORT
CHRISTCHURCH - CITY OF ART SAYS MOORE
Seventy-five percent of Christchurch residents think the new Christchurch City Council art gallery is a good, very good or excellent idea, according to a survey of 400 residents conducted late in 1998. And if the mix of exhibitions appeals to residents, 90 percent of locals think they might attend.
The survey is the first part of two pieces of research conducted on behalf of the Christchurch City Council by research company ACNielson.
The research, conducted as part of research on the residents Christchurch City Council newsletter, City Scene, is to be used to see what residents know and dont know about the new art gallery, what exhibitions are of most interest and to gain the sponsorship that is needed.
"The results of this survey are excellent news!" said Garry Moore, Mayor of Christchurch City. "They show that Christchurch is indeed a City with a high regard for art and our cultural assets.
"It is encouraging to see the project is supported - for cultural reasons! We do live in a City of Art! This is a huge boost to the staff at the Robert McDougall Art Gallery, artists and the entire artistic community," said Garry Moore.
"This research also confirms our intention to ensure the new Gallery will be a wonderful place for families to go with facilities for children," said Garry Moore.
"Most of those surveyed saw that the new gallery will be a huge cultural benefit to our City (31%), and also that the benefits include attracting tourists and visitors (29%) and getting more than the current ten percent of our Citys art collection on display (25%).
"The research leaves us with good information to work with in attracting sponsors and refining the way we promote the new gallery to encourage more visitors. We already have the most visited of any public art gallery in the country with our existing cramped facilities - the new gallery will obviously be heavily visited. The survey also tells us that if we get the mix of exhibitions right it looks like 90% of the City will visit," said Garry Moore.
Other major highlights from the research include:
Key benefits (without prompting) from the art gallery were seen to be:
cultural benefit to the City 31%
attract tourists/visitors 29%
more of City art collection can be shown 25%
economic benefit to City 20%
old Gallery is too small 19%
attract overseas exhibitions 13%
Seventy-nine percent of residents, when prompted, (very strongly, strongly or agree) thought that the new art gallery will bring economic benefits to the City.
Eighty-six percent of residents, when prompted, (very strongly, strongly or agree) thought that the new art gallery will be a cultural asset to the City.
Forty-four percent of respondents will definitely visit the new art gallery with a further eighteen percent of respondents probably going to visit the new gallery.
Twenty-seven percent of respondents will visit the gallery if the exhibition is of interest. This group is highest in the 15 to 39 age group, earning between $20,000 and $40,000 per annum.
Exhibitions and programmes that will attract local visitors are:
international exhibitions 83%
NZ exhibitions 81%
local exhibitions 80%
outdoor sculpture garden 62%
art programmes 49%
modern art 46%
art lectures and seminars 38%
Key facilities that will encourage attendance are:
on site parking 69%
specialist gift shop 31%
Construction is due to start on the new gallery in September 2000. The site is the current carpark situated between Worcester Boulevard and Montreal and Gloucester Streets.
The maximum margin of error is +/- 4.9%
The findings of the second research piece, which focused more on attitudes and was undertaken in small groups, will be received by Council staff later this month
For further information contact: Garry Moore
Tel: 385 5514
Mobile: 025 330-559
Community Relations Unit
Tel: 941 6416