Barnaby Joyce

New England funding to showcase local Indigenous arts

28 Sep 2020

Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, has announced new funding to support the region’s talented local artists through the Australian Government’s Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support (IVAIS) program.

Arts North West Inc will receive $80,000 to engage Aboriginal Arts Officer, Lorrayne Fishenden, to deliver services to Indigenous visual artists based in the New England North West region.

“We’re lucky to have a wealth of Indigenous history right here on our doorstep, so it’s important to maintain those cultural links not only for local Indigenous people but for the future generations of all Australians,” Mr Joyce said.

“This funding will be invaluable to help local Indigenous artists realise their potential in the New England North West.”

Arts North West Executive Director, Caroline Downer, was delighted to receive funding from the Federal Government.

“This will support and foster Aboriginal artists in the New England North West by engaging Lorrayne Fishenden and 2 Rivers Pty Ltd to implement the NENW Aboriginal Arts Strategy,” Mrs Downer said.

“This supports strong participation by Aboriginal artists in a professional, sustainable visual arts industry including exhibitions, art fairs, professional and skills development through mentoring and workshops, online resource development and networking opportunities.

“The strategy focuses on training and resources to inform investment and best practice that will result in positive outcomes for the region by strengthening capacities for self-determination, transmission of culture to future generations and increasing sustainable career pathways through arts and cultural pursuits.

“Arts North West is looking forward to consulting and working with the Aboriginal community to develop and coordinate a strategic regional approach to deliver a strong regional Aboriginal arts and cultural sector.”

The local investment formed part of $49 million in funding that will flow to Australia’s world-renowned Indigenous arts sector through the IVAIS program, providing new opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and supporting a professional and viable visual arts industry.  

Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said the funding will support Indigenous visual art organisations including art centres, art fairs, regional hubs and service organisations.

“Indigenous-owned art centres are at the heart of Australia’s internationally renowned Indigenous visual arts movement and are an important contributor to local economies,” Minister Fletcher said.

“I’m pleased that the organisations supported through today’s announcement continue to facilitate and promote ethical conduct in the Indigenous visual arts sector.”

The Government’s IVAIS program provides annual funding through an open competitive grants process and through targeted funding opportunities, supporting about 8,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and 500 Indigenous arts workers.

The Government invests around $750 million in the arts and cultural sector in each year through its regular funding programs.

The funding announced was in addition to $7 million of support for Indigenous artists and arts centres through the Relief and Recovery Fund COVID-19 package announced on 9 April 2020.

(ENDS)