Rich arts experiences provide opportunities for Queenslanders

Communities across Queensland will have access to a range of vibrant arts and cultural experiences thanks to $837,534 in funding from the Palaszczuk Government.

Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch said this funding, provided under the Queensland Arts Showcase Program, was helping to strengthen Queensland’s arts and cultural sector and helped support local artists to create new work that creates diverse and original experiences in communities.

“In this round, we have funded 22 projects that cover a range of artistic forms, including performing arts, visual arts, music, design and craft projects, right across Queensland,” Ms Enoch said.

“For example, $49,500 has been provided to this year’s Winton Outback Festival, to be held in September in this Year of the Outback Tourism, which will be a must-see regional arts and cultural tourism event with more than 100 artists, 40 community workshops and 85 performances.

Outback Festival Event Coordinator Robyn Stephens said the five-day major regional event strengthened Indigenous arts and cultural tourism, provided employment opportunities for regional arts and art workers, and engaged the community in skills development workshops.

“This funding being received during the Year of Outback Tourism will drive economic growth through increased visitation to celebrate the 25th celebration of the Outback Festival, delivering a diverse arts and cultural program,” Mrs Stephens said.

Minister Enoch said other arts projects being funded included the Big Sky Girls mentoring program, which has received $49,500, to support young emerging regional and remote female contemporary music artists to hone their skills.

“This project will be delivered in Brisbane, Gympie and Cairns and will help to foster talent and keeping songwriting and storytelling alive across regional Queensland,” she said.

“Meanwhile, CQ Shopfront, presented by The Ideas Distillery, has received $59,676 for the 18-month developmental program for Central Queensland visual artists and makers, helping them build their entrepreneurial skills, create commercially viable work and develop sustainable businesses.”

Minister Enoch said in Cunnamulla, mural artist Guido van Helton will work with the community to design and develop a large-scale installation to be painted on the town’s water tower in a move to tell local stories through public art, thanks to $40,000 from the Palaszczuk Government.

“Guido’s photo-realist works adorn structures across Australia and internationally and this significant new work will help to expand the ‘silo art’ trail throughout regional Queensland,” Ms Enoch said.

The Minister said this round of funding also supported a new project centred on the writings of the late internationally recognised Queensland artist Gordon Bennett.

“Gordon Bennett was a ground-breaking multidisciplinary artist of Aboriginal and Anglo-Celtic heritage,” she said.

“The Selected Writings of Gordon Bennett project developed by Griffith University Art Museum will reveal a wealth of new information about the late great artist’s work and provide insights into his ongoing impact on contemporary Australian art.”

Other arts projects funded cover a diverse range of genres, including theatre, poetry, jazz, classical music and cabaret.

Since QASP opened in September 2015, 346 applicants have received funding support totalling $11.6 million.

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