Run by Mark Collett and Kathryn Hodgkinson, Cobalt Studios nurtures, facilitates and showcases culture by developing space to host artists and audiences.
Our building contains 14 high quality affordable artists’ studios (the basis of our formation), a pop up venue (permanent license pending) and a top floor co-working project space (in construction). We also hope to develop a maker area in the backyard with additional studios. Cobalt is a not for profit project, with a number of social impacts and outcomes at it's core. The studios enable 15 people to make their living as self-employed artists, most of whom exhibit in public galleries, in the public realm and facilitate creative engagement in many other ways. We aim to take part in key cultural events during the year that play an important part in Newcastle's cultural landscape (including The Ouseburn Open Studios, The Late Shows and Evo Emerging).
We are artist led and have been renovating the building for the last 16 years. All of the internal building work has been done by ourselves and we continue to evolve. This is a 'slow' development and all the richer for it! The venue space supports a wide variety of cultural activity, profit and non-profit making. Ticket sales from all Cobalt curated events go directly to the artists performing. We also allow other not for profit performers and artists to utilise the space to showcase their work.
Student retention is important to us; we believe they are more likely to stay in a city that offers alternative independent options for culture and nightlife. We offer a graduate studio space and are planning graduate open days. We are welcome to exhibition / event suggestions from undergraduates.
We firmly believe that projects such as Cobalt bring a great deal to creative regeneration and cultural tourism and are especially important in our particular area which continues to see it's character and integrity degraded as developers gobble up land, flatten old buildings and re-develop with little consideration for community engagement or longer term urban planning.