Seven projects set to boost arts and culture across regional NSW

RAF-Spaghetti-CircusSeven organisations have been announced as successful recipients of the Australia Government’s Regional Arts Fund (RAF) Recovery Grants in NSW, each receiving a share in $371,603 to deliver arts projects across regional NSW.

Administered in NSW by Regional Arts NSW, The RAF Recovery Boost was established by the Australian Government as a one-off fund to help the mid-term recovery of the arts in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Regional Arts NSW CEO Elizabeth Rogers says the funding will provide organisations with the means to reignite meaningful arts and cultural activities and support the skill development of artists across their regions for now and into the future.

“Regional NSW is fortunate to have so many creative and innovative arts organisations working with their local communities across the state. We are delighted to see such high-quality projects receive funding that will help to nurture and enhance the arts in regional NSW,” said Ms Rogers.

“The seven outstanding projects that have been awarded RAF Recovery Grants demonstrate a diversity of arts practice including dance, circus, music and visual arts with a strong representation from Aboriginal Artists. The successful projects will be delivered across a number of different regions from the Outback to the coast.

Each project demonstrates an arts and cultural offering that is relevant and needed for their region, while collectively reigniting culture and activity across the wider state. We look forward to watching these seven great projects come to fruition in 2021,” said Ms Rogers.

For more information about the Regional Arts Fund (RAF) Recovery Grants in NSW, visit: for details.

Image: Spaghetti Circus

Recipients awarded RAF Recovery Funding across regional NSW are:

Outback Arts: Living Arts & Culture – Unplugged
Region: Outback
Living Arts and Culture – Unplugged will strengthen the creative capacity and sustainability of Aboriginal Artists in regional and remote communities through delivery of an innovative artistic program. The program will be delivered throughout the Outback Arts seven Local Government Areas by well-known and respected Aboriginal artists and facilitators, and will involve language and music workshops, residencies, exhibitions and a story-telling production.

Cementa Inc.: Regional Artist Mentoring Program 2021
Region: Central West
This 12-month mentoring program will be a focused, tailored, creative and professional development program. Ten regional artists across ten areas of regional NSW will develop their artistic and professional practice in the lead up to a group exhibition at Firstdraft Gallery, curated by Amala Groom. The program is designed to deliver professional development to regional artists through an integrated program of mentorship, skills delivery, networking opportunities and creative development.

Country Music Association of Australia Inc.: AcademyX
Region: North West
AcademyX (Academy of Country Music Extension) will enable the online delivery of the flagship Academy of Country Music skills development and career planning program. Due to the current circumstances created by COVID-19, the current programs have not been able to be take place and this program will allow participants from every region of the country to promote their art and artistry to a national audience. When available, it will also continue to increase access to vital skill building and training of songwriters, musicians and performers by complementing the physical programs of the Academy.

Arcadian Creative Management: Gumbaynggirr Music Futures
Region: Mid North Coast
In partnership with organisation Grow the Music, Indigenous singer songwriter Warren H Williams and classically trained musician and composer Julianne Croft will deliver workshops to and record songs with emerging Gumbaynggirr artists from the Nambucca Valley. Through the workshops, participants will explore a diversity of career pathways in the music industry including song writing, performance, recording, mixing, sound engineering, production, and musical leadership. This project will provide skills and confidence building for young and emerging artists in the Nambucca Valley, whose mental health and access to creative opportunities were severely impacted by drought, bushfires and COVID-19 in the region.

Spaghetti Circus Inc.: Ringside Restart – Mullumbimby Circus Festival Artistic Program
Region: Northern Rivers
Ringside Restart is artistic recovery of the 2021 Mullumbimby Circus Festival, which will be a COVID-safe reactivation of the event after the cancellation of the 2020 Festival. The Regional Arts Fund will provide crucial support for local artists who were impacted by bushfires, drought and floods, by supporting three new commissions for local artists and an emerging artist residency program. New collaborations between independent circus companies and established local artists will be formed, as well as the creative recovery opportunities for the Spaghetti Circus Performance Troupe.

The Wired Lab: The Church – Conversion and Commission
Region: Eastern Riverina
The Wired Lab will deliver a strategic cultural initiative at the Church of Immaculate Conception, Muttama, involving the conversion of the Church into a distinctive, highly experiential multi-purpose space and the commission of three experiential artworks for permanent installation. These culturally engaging activities will be both embedded from within and representative of the authenticity of regional and remote communities in the South West and Eastern Riverina of NSW. It will contribute to The Wired Lab’s ongoing viability, offer new cultural services to the region, attract visitation and contribute to the region’s local economies.

Jade Dewi: SMOKE
Region: Northern Rivers
This project involves the recovery and re-ignition of dance theatre work SMOKE. SMOKE is a work co-authored by Jade Dewi and Kirk Page, which is in its early stages of development on Bundjalung Country, inspired by their cultural heritage and lineages. This dynamic collaboration of an Aboriginal/Torres Strait theatre creator and culturally and linguistically diverse dance artist and choreographer will create a work of contemporary and traditional significance. Coming out of isolation due to COVID-19, the creative team will grow and revive the project’s creative development through research, strategic planning, and deepening of connection to the community and subject matter.