New Aboriginal arts and cultural strategy promotes career pathways

Vicki Van Hout, Long Grass, Intimate Spectacle, Performance Space 2015. Photo: Heidrun Lohr.

Vicki Van Hout, Long Grass, Intimate Spectacle, Performance Space 2015. Photo: Heidrun Lohr.

Career pathways for Aboriginal artists is a key focus of the NSW Government’s latest Aboriginal Arts and Cultural Strategy: Connection Culture, Pathways, Executive Director of Arts NSW, Mary Darwell, said.

Ms Darwell said the strategy, launched last night at Carriageworks in Sydney, supports new creative opportunities for Aboriginal artists, arts workers, communities and audiences.

“This second stage of the Aboriginal Arts and Cultural Strategy builds on significant achievements from stage one (2010-2014) and will guide Arts NSW’s ongoing strategic collaborations and partnerships,” Ms Darwell said

“Initiatives developed under the strategy are improving visibility of our State’s rich and vibrant Aboriginal culture – from dance to theatre, visual art, multi-art, literature and music.

“With Sydney and NSW having the largest Aboriginal population in Australia, our State has a wealth of Aboriginal artistic talent and a unique Aboriginal arts and cultural sector.”

Ms Darwell said the strategy, based on the themes Connection, Culture and Pathways, reflects the NSW Government’s vision for Aboriginal arts and culture as outlined in the Create in NSW 10-year policy framework.

“Across its three priority areas of market development; careers; and government and industry partnerships, the strategy supports career pathways through initiatives such as mentorships and secondments with a focus on young Aboriginal artists and opportunities in regional NSW and Western Sydney. Under stage one of the strategy, $3.8 million of targeted funding was allocated to 129 initiatives between 2011 and 2014.

The strategy supports:

  • The Aboriginal Regional Arts Fund, which provides grants to artists and arts organisations to promote cultural identity in regional NSW.
  • The NSW Aboriginal Arts Fellowship, which each year supports an Aboriginal artist to undertake a self-directed program of professional development.
  • Support for career development opportunities for Aboriginal producers, curators, programmers and managers through direct placements with arts organisations
  • Western Sydney Art Centres ArtsReady program, which involves Aboriginal trainees gaining experience and qualifications in arts business management.

View (Stage Two) NSW Aboriginal Arts and Cultural Strategy 2015 – 2018.

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Published: 17 February 2016