A new $35,000 project based in the New England will enable greater access to cultural experiences following a grant under the Australian Government’s Regional Arts Fund.
Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, said the $35,000 grant to Aboriginal Regional Arts Alliance, currently based in Ashford, will help fund new opportunities for indigenous artists throughout the state through the two-year ARAA Connect project.
ARAA Connect will increase employment and economic opportunities for Aboriginal artists in regional and remote New South Wales by building the capacity and creativity of Aboriginal communities through a series of professional and creative workshops delivered by Aboriginal people for Aboriginal people with a focus on building sustainable economic, social, emotional and cultural development outcomes.
“The New England has a rich Aboriginal history and one of the great attractions of our nation is to understand that,” Mr Joyce said.
“Think of all the names that have Aboriginal connotations but we don’t know what they actually mean.
“So when we recognise the Aboriginal history of our area, we’re actually recognising our own history.”
Aboriginal Regional Arts Alliance Secretary, Lorrayne Fishenden, said the project would focus on “building the capacity of regional Aboriginal artists and celebrate their work”.
The Regional Arts Fund supports sustainable cultural development in regional and remote communities by providing support to artists and organisations to create new works, develop skills and make connections across communities. Through the latest round, the Government will provide more than $1.1 million to support 71 regional arts and cultural projects.
Also funded in the New England under this round:
- New England Writers' Centre, Armidale ($8,030): Children's literature festival outreach to communities beyond Armidale and region.
- Tamworth Regional Council ($19,680): Sky Canvas: Telling our stories of the Sky, Land and People will be the first series of creative arts programs at the Tamworth Regional Astronomy and Science Centre (TRASC).
- Tamworth Regional Gallery ($19,465): Collection Conversion – study of the region's identity through an exploration of six regional museums and their collections to develop a series of new artworks that uniquely respond to each collection.
- Tamworth Local Aboriginal Land Council ($20,000): Building Leadership in Aboriginal Arts and Culture. The project utilises arts and culture to build the cultural and economic capacity of Aboriginal cultural leaders in the Guyra and Tamworth regions.