Vicki Tahau-Paton (Central Ward)

What value do you see the arts having in Christchurch and how will you support the arts?
Art has always been my passion, it’s great when you are still good friends with your high school art teacher. Henry Sunderland with his orange cones stuffed with flowers was a huge part of helping find humor and empathy in an event that was often overwhelming for some. We are only scratching the surface of our city’s talent and potential is massive. 

Art is a form of expression and can take various forms of creativity be it through music, design, dance, it is not limiting,  I feel it should not be judged but respected. 

How would I support the arts, my dream in council is to have all new or existing businesses encouraged to display local artists, I don’t believe that they need to be given incentives, but I do believe that if there can be a way to tailor an exhibition towards their industry they may open to the concept. 

Possibly a percentage of all commercial new builds $$$$ is allocated to local arts and definitely not isolated to one huge expensive piece of art but many with a rule it has to be locally sourced.

I would recommend the council contacts Thane Pullan who is  building software to make events and galleries/exhibitions more accessible. promoting this technology within the council would be great. It allows people to receive text on their mobile phones based on locations. He is currently expanding the software to include images, 3d images, panorama and eventually virtual reality.

What value do you see social enterprise having in Christchurch, and how will you support it?
In the 90s I won a small business award sponsored by Deliottes, following loosely the social enterprise concept, the only reason I could afford to run my business in New Regent Street was because I could top the financial short full with my full time job. The banks didn’t want to loan me the money and although it was a struggle it was rewarding to help our up and coming fashion designers, the skills our team got was invaluable, it was a part of my life I am truly proud of. This was a time when you needed your husbands signature for a Ballantynes or Quinns card. I encourage social enterprise and believe Christchurch is the leading city I would like to see it become a training ground nationally and internationally.

What would the city look like today without the transitional movement post earthquake?
If we took all economic factors out of the equation, how would you value the contribution of the Arts?
I have been a national and regional sports person, with age that stops. I have designed clothes and appreciated art for as long as I can remember that is eternal……. I value the contribution of the arts as precious but something to be shared by all, it has no boundaries and is limitless, it is our future and our past, it is our being and for me it is part of my soul.

Christchurch is fast becoming the social enterprise centre of New Zealand, reflected in the fact we are hosting the 2017 Social Enterprise World Forum. What seems common practice in UK city councils is for these governance bodies to prioritise social enterprises in all tendering processes to encourage local economies. What are your thoughts around bringing similar policies into CCC?  
With consultation regarding the social and environmental outcomes anything is possible, but to achieve this it needs to be presented analytically and those that are not familiar with the concept need it sold to them in their language. I support a democratic process and feel everyone should be offered a level playing field, if social enterprises don’t have the tools to compete then give them the education to help to do so.