An Inside Look At Our 'Praise You' Art Exhibition
Earlier this month we co-hosted the Praise You Art Exhibition at Bib’n’Brace Collective with Alex Saba of Lusid Art. Featuring 24 original artworks created by 24 amazing female artists, Praise You raised much needed funds for The Butterfly Foundation. We were incredibly moved to have Mia Findlay, a spokesperson from The Butterfly Foundation, speak about her experiences as a body positivity advocate on Opening Night. Praise You’s Encore Night was another special event, with an insightful and engaging Q&A panel featuring eight inspiring women from the creative industry. We were overwhelmed by the support we received for the event and are so excited to see how the Praise You community connects and grows in the future.
We chatted to Alex about organising this year’s event and what the future holds for Praise You.
What inspired you to create Praise You, and subsequently turn it into an annual event?
Praise You is inspired by women celebrating women. Although it focuses on creative women (being an art show) it’s really there to inspire everyone from all walks of life. It’s inspired by women celebrating each other successes, and supporting and uplifting each other in the hard times - be it creative/professional life, or personal life with body positivity. Praise You brings a community of creative women together to open up the conversation about body image, self confidence and journeys in their career. After the first event in 2017 - the response was truly overwhelming. I found my purpose supporting The Butterfly Foundation and women, in a way I’m yet to see. I feel like we’re onto something here...
Praise You seems to draw from an incredibly supportive community of women. Did you actively cultivate this sense of community or was it something that happened naturally?
The community has definitely been around before Praise You - which was a big inspiration for the event - as they have supported me so beautifully. For me, Praise You was a way to say thank you to these women and celebrate them. It’s been so rewarding strengthening relationships, making new ones, connecting people and, as a result, growing that community.
What was it like to collaborate with Carly and the UNE PIECE Team this year, as opposed to doing it on your own last year?
It was a whole new experience, like my first time organising it all over again. I still feel like it was a dream to work with people like Carly and her team. We had a lot stacked against us and at the best of times it was chaos but everyone believed in it so strongly. We all held a mutual respect and admiration for each other that it fell together, we learned and we celebrated - the event and each other. I never knew this was even ahead after last year’s event but it just felt right. Even though I know I could do it as a sole organiser (still with support) I don’t think I’d do it without a team again - it was so rewarding and special to celebrate everyone’s hard work and efforts.
What future plans, if any, do you have for Praise You?
I do feel like this is something very special the I’ve created, and shared. In particular after seeing people beaming from this year’s event - I think the world needs something like Praise You. I also absolutely adore The Butterfly Foundation, the women involved and of course the UNE PIECE Team, so we are definitely looking at the possibilities…
See all the photos from Praise You’s Opening Night and Encore Night, below.
Photography by Markus Ravik