Hear them RAW!

| August 1, 2012

Words by Anthony Thomas

It’s hard to believe that it has been a month since American creative initiative, RAW was launched in Australia at Oh Hello. The sell-out event was a breath of fresh air to the Brisbane scene, with nothing quite like it on offer in our humble city. Fast-forward to last Wednesday evening and the second showcase, RAW:mixology. The follow-up event certainly lived up to the benchmark initially set by the launch. I arrived at little before 9pm and the venue was packed. Gone was the nightclub you’d find on the weekend, and instead,  atmospheric lighting exposed the walls to the work the various visual artists and photographers. As the festivities progressed, the crowd was taken on a journey through the world of film, music, dance, and fashion. Highlights from the night were local film maker Jack Webb’s emotional short film, Flowers, a great set from Foals-esque indie popsters, Tundra, and a runway show by BENJI the label.

Tundra @ RAW

It was a great night but you’re probably still  thinking, “What the hell is RAW?” RAW, the brainchild of founder Heidi Luerra, was launched in Los Angeles in 2009. After its initial triumph (some 750 people degree of triumph), RAW rapidly expanded throughout America in three short years. Its recent successes in Australia only confirmed that it’s set explode globally with launches in both China and Europe planned for 2013. The event’s founding concept is to provide a platform for unknown local artists (of varying media) to come together, collaborate, and showcase their work, a concept we wholeheartedly endorse. RAW describes this intermixing of ideas as a “one-night circus of creativity” . These events run monthly in each location from February to October and culminate with the RAWards held in Hollywood. The prize: exposure, and a lot of it. RAW isn’t limited to the showcases either.

RAW has diversified itself into the online market to provide an exclusive network for artists to promote themselves and view other artists profiles. RAW’s uniqueness stems from its mantra, “for artists, by artists”. Management understands firsthand what difficulties emerging artists face and have made it their mission to break down the barriers that dishearten so many from the industry.

RAW sounds like a budding creative’s wet dream right? That’s because it is. It’s a project that offers incredible opportunities that are few and far between in Brisbane. Check the RAW:brisbane Facebook page to stay up to date on submissions for future shows. And don’t forget to come and celebrate the festivities when RAW rolls back into town next month on the 29th at Oh Hello. Get amongst it, Brisbane!

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