Coastal living highlighted through arts projects

Published: 05 Jul 2022

A new beachside music festival, the Keswick Island Artwork Trail and a photographic exhibition featuring water sport culture have all received a funding boost.

Council has approved more than $47,000 in grants towards 11 projects as part of the latest Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) round.

RADF Committee chair Cr Fran Mann said a celebration of coastal living was a real theme in the applications for this round of funding.

“The committee was pleased to see so many projects that celebrate our beaches, islands and the way of life that makes our region so appealing,” Cr Mann said.

“The Beach Sounds music festival is a new event, hosted by Mackay Surf Life Saving Club, that’s all about ‘bringing people back to the beach’ and giving local artists the opportunity to perform,” she said.

“The club hopes that Beach Sounds will become an annual fundraising event which will not only create much needed funds for them, but also create an environment of great food, wine and music at beautiful Harbour Beach.”

Mackay Surf Life Saving Club received a $7500 grant towards Beach Sounds.

Cr Mann said Mackay Adventure Lodge had also been successful, with a $4000 grant towards the Living Room project.

“This is a photographic account of Mackay's outdoor water-sporting lifestyle through the lens of two emerging photographers, Jacob Vinall and Brent Coles,” she said.

Applicant Amanda Pelagalli said the aim of the exhibition was to get a group of likeminded people together to talk about water sports, the art of photography and help get new people into both.

“We believe that by staying active and connected, we stay healthy and on the straight and narrow,” Ms Pelagalli said.

Cr Mann said $9457 had been approved to develop the Keswick Island Art Trail under the Green Arts category.

The project received a previous RADF grant of $5656 for concept development.

“Nine quality artworks are being installed in key locations for a two-month ephemeral art trail on Keswick Island that is a fringe event in the 2022 Mackay Festival of Arts,” she said.

According to the applicant Eva Browne-Paterson, Wildcat Mackay will bring visitors out to the island to experience the trail.

“There will be minimum impact from the installation of the artworks, and it will take little time to dismantle the art trail and put the locations back to their natural state,” Ms Browne-Paterson said.

“Although the art trail will be ephemeral, we are intending to store the artworks and reuse/repurpose them for use in alternate locations in future art trails,” she said.

Also funded under this round to the value of $8976 is an exciting project by Janet Ambrose which will lead to an exhibition and book of high-quality visual artworks and stories showcasing elders from the diverse cultures of Mackay.

“Mackay is hugely diverse with over 80 different cultural groups,” Ms Ambrose said.

“This project will showcase our community elders, chosen through liaison with partners and paid cultural advisors,” she said. “In some cases, younger members of families will conduct the interviews with their grandparents.”

Also funded under this round were:

  • $6815 towards Louder (Youth-Led Forum Theatre Project) by Zahrah Andrews
  • $1946 towards Crafty Hands, a Holiday Workshops for Pioneer Valley Kids led by the Valley Spinners and Crafts Group Inc
  • $1382 towards a Printmaking Collage Workshop with Laura Castell to be hosted by Printbank Mackay Inc
  • $1950 towards Fiona Flohr attending Life-In-Style-Melbourne with Shelley Pisani for professional development
  • $3588 towards developing “OUR Artist Trail”, an Artist trail in the Isaac, Mackay and Whitsunday regions, by Margaret Burgess
  • $1700 towards the 2022 International Men's Day Art Show by Shed Happens Mackay
  • $7050 towards the Whitsundays Songwriters Residency - Emerging Artists’ Workshop where 12 emerging local songwriters will be mentored by professional songwriters

Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch said the Palaszczuk Government is investing $2.08 million through the Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) in 2021-22, matched with a contribution of approximately $2.3 million from 59 councils across the state.

RADF is a great example of working together to deliver our COVID-19 economic recovery plan, supporting employment opportunities and creating new arts and cultural experiences in local and regional communities,” Minister Enoch said.

“RADF in 2021–2022 will provide valuable social, health and economic outcomes for regional Queenslanders, and support our Government’s 10-year arts roadmap priorities to strengthen Queensland communities, activate local places, and drive social change across the state.

“Our investment complements the Palaszczuk Government’s wider commitment to regional arts, including continued support of $6 million over four years for the Regional Arts Services Network.”