Expresstival art and music festival returns as headline event in Anti-Poverty Week


Expresstival participants Raz Ion (co-ordinator), Tricha Stedman, Jonathon Richards, Geoff Bice, Aaron Young (festival organiser), Ray Fern, G-Marl Jamal and Dirk Taljaard.  Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au   d459885
Expresstival participants Raz Ion (co-ordinator), Tricha Stedman, Jonathon Richards, Geoff Bice, Aaron Young (festival organiser), Ray Fern, G-Marl Jamal and Dirk Taljaard. Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au d459885

EXPRESSTIVAL returns this year as the headline event for Anti-Poverty Week, taking place on October 22 in Forrest Place from 11am.

Last year, more than 200 performers and artists entertained almost 4000 people in the heart of the CBD.

A diverse mix of musicians and artists will provide the main entertainment on the day and there will be a large-scale painting project run by Foundation Housing’s residents with the support of established artists.

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Expresstival director Aaron Young said the event broke down preconceptions about poverty.

“We need to engage people in the conversation around poverty,” he said.

“When we started in 2012 it was a small event – but the direct engagement with charities and homeless people really changed people’s perceptions.

“Music and art is a great medium to have people engage in conversations that they would not normally have. We as a community need to connect with each other.”

Mr Young said he had learned from listening to others and from his own experience that speaking out about poverty is crucial.

“I have lived below the poverty line in certain times in my life and you find it very hard to ask for help.

“When people connect around art and music it is an opportunity to put aside preconceptions,” he said.

The event had struggled to attract sponsorship, after being well-supported in 2015, reflecting the increasingly challenging economic climate.

Expresstival has been collaborating with Edith Cowan University in a project that sees students from Swan View Senior High designing programs to address poverty.

Visit www.expresstival.com