Artz Blitz 2021

The Suburban Review had the good fortune to be able to collaborate with Kingston Arts on Artz Blitz 2021, a community art competition for all ages. It’s a fantastic event, with some of the most thoughtful and creative works we’ve ever seen, and we’re so excited to work with the winners of the adult creative writing competition for one of our upcoming issues. The team here at TSR highly encourages everyone to visit the exhibition, which is on until the end of the month.

Maya Pilbrow, Associate Editor and Media Manager here at TSR, was a judge for the creative writing entries, and also spoke briefly at the awards ceremony and exhibition opening. Below is her speech. 

Artz Blitz speech

Hello and good afternoon to everyone.

I’m Maya Pilbrow, an associate editor at The Suburban Review, a quarterly literary journal based in Narrm/Melbourne and Eora/Sydney with a strong focus on diversity and inclusivity.

I’m so excited that we’ve been able to collaborate with Artz Blitz — it’s been an honour and a privilege to judge the creative writing entries.

The entries this year have been so varied and profound. The entrants interpreted the theme of FUTURE in such fascinating ways.

We had meditations on loss and grief, sci-fi horror, romance, you name it. There was poetry and prose that reflected a huge range of emotion and I enjoyed reading all of it immensely.

It’s heartening to see such a joyous expression of artistic prowess, and the entries from the under-18s and under-12s especially filled me with joy.

To see the next generation be so hopeful, and intelligent, and funny when thinking about the future is reassurance that the art world will be in good hands in the years to come.

It’s a strange time to be creating art. I’m sure we’ve all had our creative output affected in some way by the events of the past year.

That’s why it means so much to be able to work with Artz Blitz and the Kingston Council

— we love to see local support for the arts!

In fact, the Kingston Council has played a very key role in supporting my own love of reading and writing.

When I was 9 years old my family relocated to Australia from the United states. When we arrived, we lived not far from here in Dingley Village.

I have very fond memories of proudly using my first Australian library card, issued by the Kingston Council! for the library in Dingley.

The Suburban Review is keenly aware that artistic enterprises like our own publication rely, in large part, on a social ecosystem of individual writers and artists, editors and publishers, of galleries and organizers, of local state and federal government support systems.

If there’s anything the pandemic has proven it’s that we all must embrace collaboration in a stronger way than before and work together to further a sense of community.

It’s incredibly important to nurture artistic passions at all ages and it’s so wonderful to see Kingston Council’s favourite community arts competition thrive.

Photography by Lucy Foster.