Jumpers and Jazz in July is a great premise for a Queensland country festival celebrating Winter, where as long as you don your warmest woollies you will be guaranteed to be as snug as a bug in a rug while you get down and enjoy ten fulfilling days of textile art and jazz music.
If you would revel in a mid-year, mid-winter getaway grab your gloves, beanies, scarves, jumpers, long johns and all things woollen and head off to Warwick in South-East Queensland, where the Jumpers and Jazz festivities get under way from the 18th July – 28th July. It’s all part of the wider Queensland Festival of Music 12 – 28th July.
An infectious happy community spirit underpins the entire festival, which is all about embracing the chill and enjoying an opportunity to be inspired by vibrant music and art.
Be involved in the creativity by joining an art workshop, attend an artist’s talk or design a tree jumper for one of the 100+ trees available.
Ewe can bring your knitting needles or crochet hooks, because spontaneous acts of art in the streets, coffee shops and parks is definitely encouraged.
Artists, community groups, schools and businesses have been knitting furiously, crocheting and felting for months now to meet with the growing demand for beautiful handcrafted wares.
After a decade gaining a huge and loyal following, the 2013 Jumpers and Jazz Festival is sure to be their best yet.
To celebrate the festival’s first decade and 10th year, ten especially selected artists from the local region, from Brisbane and from as far afield as Tasmania have been invited to transform Warwick Art Gallery’s suite of identical black timber tree structures to encompass their own chosen work of art and the gallery will also be presenting the national premiere of the exhibition Portraits of a Tea Cosy from Thursday 5th July.
This exhibition is the culmination of a two year journey initiated by yarn artist Loani Prior, aka Queen of Tea Cosies, and professional photographer Mark Crocker, whose work evokes nostalgic memories and deep familial love.
Knitting has been very much in the news and as an alternative to tree hugging, you can enter the ‘Tree Jumper’ exhibition, which is undoubtedly the focal point of the festival.
The whole thing started with an idea to add some colour, warmth and cheer in the middle of winter to the centre of town.
The competition is fierce and now attracts international entries from the UK and New Zealand.
The Lincolnshire Guild of Spinners and Weavers in the UK and the Claremont Spinning Group in New Zealand will both contribute to dressing up the trees in Warwick’s main street in 2013.
Entrants compete across four categories: Open Artistic (no theme), Excellence in Knitting and/or Crochet (no theme), 2013 Street Theme “Mamma Mia” and Community Groups/Not for Profit/Schools category. Appointed ‘tree jumper’ curators also hold tours throughout the festival.
Steam Train Trips for enthusiasts will be enjoyed by those wearing vivid textile art “jumpers”, and there will be bonfires, a grand vintage car rally, more than twenty textile art exhibitions, a diverse array of markets, sheep shearing, damper tastings, tea cosy stories, a picnic in the park, sumptuous dinners at local restaurants, workshops and don’t forget, jazz, jazz and much more jazz.
Two big jam-packed weekends of celebrations are planned, providing plenty of opportunity for people to just have a weekend away.
Or, if you want to beat the crowds, choose to take advantage of the festival’s mid-week program.
This includes such acts as SCAT, Well Swung Daddies, Amy Michaels & The Good Time Girls, Tedeschi and Cooper, Robyn Brown & Sassy Jazz, The Memphis Moovers, James Whiting, The Clem Four and Sunrise Road.
Warwick is just two hours drive from Brisbane, one hour from the lovely mountain town of Toowoomba or the buzz of Ipswich. Within three hours of Gold Coast day tripping is also an easy and accessible option.
Like many Australian towns Warwick is filled with glorious old sandstone buildings with lace balcony shops, pubs and picturesque colonial farm buildings suitably surrounded by shady verandahs.
For adventurers camping is the other option; several campgrounds are fitted with fire pits, a perfect place to hold a gathering.
Around 100 vintage cars will be on show courtesy of the MG Club, Warwick Veteran & Vintage Vehicle Club, Killarney Auto Enthusiasts and Monaro, Pontiac and Corvette Clubs of Queensland line the main street as a tribute to Warwick’s long-held association to motor sports.
At the Artist Flash Market stalls will be selling great ‘vintage’ gear, original high quality local artists work and, as well there will be the ubiquitous sausage sizzle and a chocolate and coffee café.
The breadth and depth of the program is quite astonishing, there’s heritage walks, homesteads, museums, rodeos and roses to learn about, the Town Crier’s history tour, pop-up exhibitions and Amy Michaels & the Good Time Girls at the Warwick Golf Club.
You can enjoy dinner and jazz at the Belle Vue and Woodfire Pizza and Jazz by a fire. Then there is the Great Gatsby Cocktail Party and the Dinner and Fashion Parade of Wearable Winter Warmers.
So, if you fancy a purl of a time away with lots happening and many activities to join into, don your jumpers so you can enjoy Jazz in July at Warwick, which might just turn out to be the winter country celebration you’ve been waiting for.
Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle 2013
Jumpers & Jazz website www.jumpersandjazz.com
SOME FESTIVAL HIGHLIGHTS:
Tree Jumper Exhibition
More than 110 trees artistically dressed with traditional textiles such as knitting, crochet, felting and weaving or inventive installations using recyclables.
When: On display throughout festival
Where: Palmerin, Grafton and Fitzroy Streets
Cost: FREE with free one hour curators tours also available
Jazz at the Gallery
Artist markets, art exhibitions and live music from SCAT, James Whiting and The Clem Four. Demonstrations and advice from national crochet champion, Sonia Grevell.
When: Saturday, 20 July, 9am-3pm
Where: Warwick Art Gallery
Portraits of a Tea Cosy exhibition
National premiere of Loani Prior and Mark Crocker’s touring exhibition celebrating and sharing tea cosy stories.
When: 4 July to 11 August (open daily throughout the festival, 10am-4pm)
Where: Warwick Art Gallery
Winter in Killarney Bonfire Night
Decorated fire drums, giant centrepiece bonfire, live band and fireworks to really warm winter. Rug up, bring chairs or picnic blanket and enjoy mulled wine, damper and stew, fondue or hot chocolates served by local community groups. Killarney’s town trees are also rugged up for the occasion with craft installations.
When: Saturday, 20 July 2013, from 4pm-9pm
Where: Killarney Polocrosse Fields, cnr Acacia and Willow Street, Killarney
Cost: $10 per person
Chocolate Dipped Letters presented by Spicers Peak Lodge
Hosted by radio personality, Ruby Slipperz, Chocolate Dipped Letters will be a women’s only forum-style afternoon of chocolate indulgence and female wit with stories and tales from some of Warwick’s most inspirational women.
When: Sunday, 21 July, 1.30pm-4.30pm
Where: Warwick Town Hall
Cost: $25 per person or $250 for table of ten (including afternoon tea from Spicers Peak Lodge). Bookings essential by telephoning (07) 4661 9073.
Grand Vintage Car Display
Around 100 vintage cars courtesy of the MG Club, Warwick Veteran & Vintage Vehicle Club, Killarney Auto Enthusiasts and Monaro, Pontiac and Corvette Clubs of Queensland line the main street as a tribute to Warwick’s long-held association to motor sports. Some are even yarn bombed for extra fun! Live jazz from Robyn Brown & Sassy Jazz, The Memphis Moovers, The Blue Violets and Pangea Music.
When: Sunday, 21 July 2013, 9.30am
Where: Palmerin Street
Saturday Stroll n’ Swing
Groove to sounds of live jazz at the Town Hall main stage or other unexpected places throughout Warwick’s CBD (jazz program including Tedeschi & Cooper, Sunrise Road, East Street Singers). Wander more than 20 textile art exhibitions, haggle and bargain at the Suitcase Rummage markets in Retro Alley, visit The Sheep Shack and experience live shearing and damper tastings from The Woolshed at Jondaryan plus a giant knitting needle challenge. Or, simply enjoy local shopping and dining.
When: Saturday, 27 July 2013, 9.30am-3pm
Where: Warwick CBD with main stage at Town Hall, The Sheep Shack @ Art Gallery courtyard and Suitcase Rummage in Retro Alley
Picnic in the Park
Craft markets and live jazz from Amy Michaels & The Good Times Girls, Well Swung Daddies and Freud Squad. Food and wine from local regional wineries plus kid’s rides and entertainment make this an outdoor winter day to remember. Bring your picnic blanket and chairs and sit back and enjoy.
When: Sunday, 28 July 2013, 9.30am-3pm
Where: Leslie Park, Warwick CBD
Ten Years, Ten Trees, Ten Artists exhibition
To celebrate the festival’s 10th year, ten specially selected artists from local region, Brisbane and even Tasmania have been invited to transform Warwick Art Gallery’s suite of identical black timber tree structures to their own chosen work of art.
When: On display throughout festival
Where: Warwick Town Hall Foyer