Seven regional Western Australian arts and culture projects will receive an investment of more than $127,669 through the Australian Government’s Regional Arts Fund; a funding initiative managed in Western Australia by Regional Arts WA.

Spanning across four regions the funds will support four artists in their creative and professional development initiatives and three organisations in their community arts development projects. The applications received were peer-assessed by a Panel of regional arts and culture community leaders.

Rita Bush | $7,802.50 | Great Southern

Retrieve your Jeans: Retrieve Your Jeans is a co-directed contemporary dance work. Rita Bush, with collaborator Cayleigh Davies, will work on the final stage of the creative development culminating in a performance season at Adelaide Fringe 2020. The work will be performed by a cast of five female dancers, including Rita, and revolves around themes of belonging, nostalgia, and ordinary extraordinaries, tied together with the everyday icon: denim jeans.

Madelaine Dickie | $14,602 | Gascoyne

The Cost of Doing Good: A Biography of Wayne Bergman (working title): Madelaine Dickie will undertake the research and creative development of a unique biography about the Kimberley Traditional Owner Wayne Bergmann, on his request. Wayne is a Nyikina man, a former finalist in the Western Australian of the Year Awards and former chief executive of the Kimberley Land Council. The project will further develop Madelaine’s skills as a writer.

Big Hart Inc | $30,000 | Pilbara

Punkaliyarra: Sister in Law Dreaming Story, Ngurin River Project: Punkaliyarra: Sister in Law Dreaming is a cultural transmission project that explores and shares deep and compelling creation stories told by senior Aboriginal women of the Pilbara. In this intergenerational project, women Elders join high calibre artists and emerging young women leaders to create storytelling content, delving into the traditional knowledge and strength of Pilbara women, creating exquisite digital art that transmits their creation stories in powerful, contemporary ways.

Diana McGirr | $14,930 | South West

Preserving Douglas Chambers’ legacy – a pathway to professional growth: This practice-based research project is the first stage in a creative development designed to refine and develop Diana’s skills as an art historian-curator-researcher whilst preserving Douglas Chambers’ artistic legacy by documenting his extensive studio archive. This archive includes a large number of rarely-seen and uncatalogued paintings, drawings, prints, slides, sketchbooks and collages dating from the 1970s onwards. It represents a seminal period in Western Australia’s art history.

Shire of Ashburton | $30,000 | Pilbara

Onslow Water Tanks Mural: The Shire will engage artist Guido van Helten to work with the community in the development of a public artwork for the two Onslow Water Tanks. The artist will engage the community in the design stage to create a work that will reflect the town’s unique history, sense of place and character.

Susan Findlay | $13,734.68 | Great Southern

About FACE International Concert and Development Tour: Musical and Creative Director Susan Findlay will travel with three emerging leaders from the Great Southern region and the regional youth choir AboutFACE to Europe to participate in masterclasses with international artists and will direct a small series of concerts. This will provide an opportunity to undertake choral, performance and personal development that has the ability to raise regional Western Australian music directing and performance skills to an international level.

Hummingbird Promotions Inc. | $16,600 | South West

Capel Makers Trail: The Capel Makers Trail is a local makers and artisans trail that will run across two days from Saturday 28 March to Sunday 29 March 2020. The Trail will bring artists and makers together in the heart of their community centres and will provide professional development.

Regional Arts WA Chief Executive Officer Paul MacPhail says, “The Australian Government’s Regional Arts Fund is crucial in supporting cultural development outcomes and social cohesion in regional, rural and remote WA.

“The diversity of projects and themes being explored has the potential for significant impact in regional communities and it was inspiring to see the number of quality projects being developed by individual artists and organisations in regional WA. This injection of $127,669 will build markets on a statewide, national and international scale, whilst also supporting the development of local arts initiatives.”

The Regional Arts Fund is one way the Australian Government supports regional artists and arts organisations to develop their artistic practice and produce works and experiences to benefit their local communities. The Regional Arts Fund is administered on behalf of the Australian Government by Regional Arts Australia and its member organisations which includes Regional Arts WA.

The next round of the RAF Project Fund, for projects which begin after 1 July 2020, will open in January 2020. Applications close 6 March 2020. Apply online at www.regionalartswa.org.au/funding/project-fund/.