Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Lockharts Spirit of the Land Festival - calling all artists!

The Lockharts Spirit of the Land Festival is a colourful and vibrant celebration of the land, held on Saturday and Sunday, 8 & 9 October in the heart of the Riverina. More than 5000 people visit the festival every year to enjoy the artistic sculptures, fine arts and photography, lively markets, boutique stalls, vivid open gardens, music and entertainment. 
The festival is well known for the celebration of the arts and all artists are welcome to participate in the Spirit of the Land Arts Festival with a prize pool of $20,000. The Arts Festival includes two exhibitions, Sculptures and Fine Arts. and attracts high calibre artists from all across Australia.

The exhibition categories are:

  1. Sculptures

  • National Farm Art Sculpture Award
    The major award is the $10,000 National Farm Art Sculpture Award, sponsored by Lockhart Shire Council. The sculptures should showcase and capture the uniqueness of the Australian landscape, flora, fauna, and lifestyle of living on the land. These sculptures can be created from any medium. It is a non-acquisitive award, and award winners will retain ownership of their artwork. The winning piece must stay on display in the Lockhart Shire for a period of twelve months. The Sculpture must be created predominately from metal and the re-use of old machinery and farm equipment is encouraged.
  • Creative Cocky AwardThis award is for art that has to have been made by a practising or retired farmer, that clearly show the origin of the steel. Pieces in this category could be refashioned farm scrap metal, but this is not mandatory. In this prize category 'imagination’ is the goal.
  • Local Artist Award For artists who reside within 50 km of Lockhart.
  • Small Sculpture Award (
    For sculptures of less than one square metre.
  • Youth Artist Award
    For sculptors who are under 18 years of age.
  • Spirit of the Land Award
    For a sculpture created from natural elements that reflect the unique Australian landscape.

Please read the Awards Criteria for specific criteria relating to each award.

2. Fine Arts Awards

  • Spirit of the Land and its People Award
    Open for art works that celebrate the spirit of the land, its people, flora, fauna, and lifestyle of living on the land and their important connection to each other. Any medium excluding photography. 
  • Open Section AwardThis is an open section and may depict subject matter of the artist’s choice. Any medium excluding photography.

3. Fine Arts Photography Award

  • Spirit of the Land Photography Prize
    Striking photographic prints encompassing landscape, portrait, and people. The prize will be awarded to the image that best captures “Australian Spirit of the Land”. 

Finally, in the sculpture and fine arts exhibitions there are two People’s Choice Awards, one for each
exhibition space, Fine Arts and Sculpture.

Registration is open to emerging and established artists who can exhibit in any or all categories. There is no limitation on the number of entries. Entries close on Friday 30 September.

Installation of artworks will be on Thursday 6 October, judging is on Friday 7 October, and the Festival officially opens on Friday evening with a preview of exhibitions and Awards Presentation evening.

For more information please visit

Making History at Griffith Pioneer Park

Griffith Pioneer Park Museum will host a visit by Margaret Simpson, a curator from Sydney's Powerhouse Museum. Mrs Simpson is a transport specialist and with her husband Phillip has written on agricultural machinery, among other topics.

She will visit Griffith as part of a curatorial visit offered by the Museum of Applied Art and Sciences.

Mrs Simpson will speak on the role of museums in teaching history and the use of their collections.

“We’re really lucky to have Margaret visit Griffith at this time as she’s enthused about the opportunities for regional museums to contribute in educating younger generations,” said Jason Richardson, Curator at Pioneer Park Museum.

“When I spoke with her recently she mentioned visiting our Museum last year and described it as ‘one of the best in the state for variety and potential to engage students’ – which is high praise from someone who has visited so many of the public collections throughout New South Wales.”

Mrs Simpson will talk about what country museums can contribute to their communities, how curators can assist them to do this and the role of museums in inter-generational learning.

Come to Griffith Pioneer Park Museum to hear Margaret Simpson talk at 11 am on Tuesday 30 August. Cost is $5 or free for Museum volunteers.

Community Presenter Touring Grant - NOW OPEN

The Community Presenter Touring Grant is a new funding initiative by Arts on Tour designed to broaden access to professional productions to audiences throughout NSW. The grant supports the presentation of professional, NSW-based productions in community-run venues, in regional towns that do not have professional performing arts infrastructure.

Community presenters can submit a proposal for funding to:
  • extend a regional tour to one or more community-run venues in regional NSW
  • support a new tour to two or more community-run venues in regional NSW
Grant funds can be used to support up to 50% of the performance/delivery fee of a touring production. Applicants can apply for
  • between $500 and $2,500 per venue
  • up to $7,500 for a consortium of three or more venues.

The first round is NOW OPEN and closes on 27 September 2016 for projects between 1 January 2017 and 31 December 2018.

Interested? Simply visit the Arts on Tour website for more information, grant guidelines, FAQs and a link to the application form.

You can also email us at Western Riverina Arts or call us on 0428882059 for advice and to find out if this grant is for you.

Taste Coleambally - it's all about the arts!

With a little less than two month to go to the Coleambally Food and Farm Festival the planning and organising is full steam ahead. The program of the biennial event is bigger and better than ever and the visitors can expect a wide variety of entertainment, arts and agriculture in and around Coleambally from the 21st to the 23rd of October.

This year there will be a new addition to the festival - the Taste Coleambally Art Precinct, which will showcase a range of artistic events, dance classes, workshops, open mics and an art exhibition. The Festival also invites regional artists to showcase and/or sell quality handmade original wares at there "Meet the Makers" Stall to create an interactive art space. Spectators will be able to watch varied artists at work.

Artists of the region can also enter their original artwork in the Taste Art Prize 2016. All mediums are welcome and the artists should create an original piece that interprets the theme “Flora, Fauna and Farming” in the local area. Melbourne artist Linda MacAulay and Western Riverina Arts RADO Derek Motion will be judging the art competition with winners announced at the opening Cocktail Party off the art exhibition on October 21. The winner will be rewarded $500 by Western Riverina arts.

Entry forms for the Taste Art Prize 2016 must be submitted by 4 pm, Friday 30th September. Find the form HERE

If you wish to be involved in the festival, whether it be as an artist, stall holder, producer, sponsor, or spectator, please contact the Coleambally Food and Farm Festival  as soon as possible!

Monday, 8 August 2016

Early Career Writer Grants

Enjoy writing? Then this is your chance!

Early Career Writer Grants are awarded by the NSW Writers’ Centre to assist early career creative writers in any genre who are resident in NSW. The aim of the grants is to foster a vibrant, diverse and innovative writing culture in the state with funding available of up to 4 grants of $5000 each.

Applicants must be early career writers who have had no more than two full-length works professionally published or performed and must not have previously received a grant of $5,000 or more for their writing from either State, Territory or Federal governments or their agencies.

At least one grant will be awarded to a writer from regional NSW!

Activities to be funded by the grant may include:

  • Creation, production or publication of new work
  • Professional development or mentoring
  • Cultural exchanges or other travel that will assist in the production or presentation of new work
  • Audience development activities conducted by the writer 

Access costs for regional writers or for writers with disability may be included in the proposal.

Opening date: 1 August 2016
Closing date: 28 August 2016
For project period: 1 February 2017 to 31 December 2017

Applications must be submitted online through the Arts NSW SmartyGrants system by midnight on the closing date. You will need a SmartyGrants login.

Please read the guidelines or talk to RADO Derek Motion about your application.

Calling all Indigenous Screen Practitioners in NSW!

Screen NSW gives three NSW based emerging Indigenous screen practitioners the opportunity to undertake paid attachments on season 2 of the Screen NSW supported sci-fi hit Cleverman Season 2, made by Goalpost Pictures for the ABC.

Cleverman is an Australian-New Zealand-American television drama on ABC. The six-part drama series reimagines several stories of the Aboriginal Dreaming in a modern, superheroic context. The series was renewed for a second season on 2 June 2016 and received A$450,000 in funding from Screen NSW.

This opportunity is in addition to the nationwide call out for attachments made by Screen Australia’s Indigenous Department.

Applications can be made for, although are not limited to, the following departments:

Art Department
Make Up and Costume
Sound Post
1st AD
Production Office

The majority of production will take place in Sydney with a proposed start date in early September, and the paid internships will run for 8-10 weeks in duration. However, the Sound Post internship will take place in New Zealand.

Screen NSW may offer support to practitioners living in regional NSW, to meet their travel and accommodation costs, if they are selected for the Screen NSW attachments.

Applications are due by Thursday August 18 and Applicants must be Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people.

Please submit a two-page Expression of Interest along with a CV by Thursday August 18 to or visit Screen NSW for more information.

A Capella Workshops in Leeton

The Queen of Jazz Ella Fitzgerald said " the only thing better than singing is more singing" and if you feel the same way you might want to join the a cappella singing workshop by Tony Backhouse in Leeton.

Tony Backhouse is an international composer and vocal arranger. In November he will lead a singing workshop covering a variety of musical styles including African American and Gospel.

The workshops are suitable for the beginner and experienced singer. Participants do not need to be able to read ‘sheet’ music, you just have to enjoy singing!

Where: St Francis College – ARC Centre – Yanco Avenue, Leeton NSW 2705

When: Saturday 12th of November 2016
             10.00am to 3.00pm
             Sunday 13th of November 2016
             10.00am to 2.30pm

Cost: $80 per person per day  (students/pensioners $40) OR $120.00 for a weekend ticket

Morning Tea/coffee will be available from 9.30 each morning before the workshop commences with a light lunch of sandwiches and fruit on each day.

For more information and a booking registration form please contact Ian Pettit on 0458 538102 or

Numbers are limited so please get in early!

Bookings Close: Monday 7th of November 2016