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The Hon Peter Garrett MP
Minister for Environment Protection, Heritage and the Arts

Mr Jim Turnour MP
Member for Leichhardt

Supporting the arts in Cairns

Media release
18 May 2010

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Arts Minister Peter Garrett announced new funding for three Cairns arts activities while visiting the Cairns Regional Gallery today with the Member for Leichhardt, Jim Turnour.

Mr Garrett said the Australian Government is providing $45,000 for two Indigenous interns to work as associate-directors on the 2010 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair. The Queensland Government is providing matching funding for this project.

“I am really pleased to build on the support that the Government provided to the first Cairns Indigenous Art Fair last year with the announcement of these two Indigenous intern positions.

“The Cairns Indigenous Art Fair is an excellent initiative that showcases the unique and remarkable work of Indigenous artists from far north Queensland and Torres Strait Islands,” Mr Garrett said.

“Working under the guidance of the artistic director, the interns will receive valuable hands-on experience in all aspects of the Fair.

“This program is designed to build on the skills of future Indigenous arts managers and pave the way for greater participation by Indigenous people in the administrative side of the arts industry.

“The Government is also providing a further $20,000 for a year-long studio residency for a Torres Strait Island printmaker to create new work at Cairns’ Djumbunji Press.

“It is great news that we are able to provide these opportunities through the Indigenous Visual Arts Professional Development fund, a component of the National Arts and Craft Industry Support Program.

“I am also pleased to announce $10,700 funding from the Government’s Festivals Australia program to the Cairns and District Chinese Association for an exhibition called Birds of a Feather.

“The exhibition will go on show as part of the Cairns Chinese New Year Festival and will be a recreation of a version of the Yuen Po bird market in Hong Kong that features the work of 30 artists.

“Cairns is a top example of a regional Australian city that offers locals and tourists an interesting and exciting program of arts experiences.”

Mr Turnour said: “The Far North has a vibrant arts & cultural community and it’s great to see the Australian Government support the development of the local industry.”

Commonwealth of Australia