The Territory Labor Government’s $2.5 million investment to transform the Mimi Aboriginal Art and Craft gallery in Katherine has achieved another milestone, with the $2.3 million construction contract awarded to local company NJ Homes (NT).
The new facility – which will include a gallery, retail space, storage areas and upgraded artist studios – is part of the $30 million Arts Trail Gallery Extension Program which is being rolled out across Katherine, Tennant Creek and Arnhem Land.
The design, brought to life by Territory company Troppo Architects, includes more flexible indoor and outdoor spaces for the creation of new work and opportunities for visitors to engage with Aboriginal arts and culture from the Katherine region.
Works will include:
· upgrading the structure to improve the use of space and provide an engaging and functional building that proudly celebrates and showcases Aboriginal arts and culture;
· creating a new gallery and retail area to enhance the display of art and promote marketing and sale of artworks and products;
· new entry and verandah area incorporating Mimi designs into the building facade and screens, and landscaping incorporating local native plants;
· flexible outdoor and indoor spaces for hosting visitors, delivering events, exhibitions and workshops; and
· upgraded artist studios and facilities for artists, as well as administration, art preparation and storage areas.
The project is progressing in consultation with local stakeholders including the Mimi Ngarrdalingi Aboriginal Corporation Board, staff and member artists.
Construction begins this month and is expected to be completed later this year.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Chansey Paech:
“The Northern Territory is leading the way with how we showcase our rich arts and cultural heritage.
“By investing in our arts and cultural assets through the Arts Trail Gallery Extension Program we are demonstrating the importance of this industry to the Territory.
“The calibre of our arts centres means we are able to hold our own on the national and international stage and it sends a strong message that our art is highly valued by the Territory Labor Government.”
Quotes attributable to Mimi Aboriginal Art and Craft, Executive Officer Michael Miller:
“This is such a significant opportunity for the Mimi Ngarrdalingi Aboriginal Corporation Board, staff and member artists and we are proud and excited that building works will commence shortly on our new and inspiring gallery.
“This new building is very special and will enable us to confidently and proudly celebrate, share and promote the Aboriginal art and culture of the Katherine region with lasting benefits for the community.
“During the construction Mimi will have a shop front and retail outlet at 34 Katherine Terrace so please continue to visit us to purchase Aboriginal art from the region and for updates on this exciting project.”