Regional Arts NSW announces program for Artstate Tamworth

26 Jul 2019 /


Minister for Arts, The Hon. Don Harwin MLC Addressing guests at the Launch of the Program for Artstate Tamworth 2019


Regional Arts NSW announces Artstate Tamworth Program at event held at Australian Museum, Sydney 

Regional Arts NSW has announced the program for Artstate Tamworth, a four-day event that will transform Tamworth into a bustling arts hub from 31st October to 3rd November 2019. 

Artstate is a four-year program presented by Regional Arts NSW which aims to shine a light on excellence in regional arts practice and to explore the exciting possibilities for arts and cultural development across the state. The event was held in Lismore in 2017 and Bathurst in 2018.

Artstate delegates will be able to enjoy a two-day conference program discussing the themes of On Country – In Country and Arts in the Age of Uncertainty. The program includes keynote speakers from across Australia and overseas including Emma Hogg (UK) of WildWorks, who specialise in landscape-based theatre; artist and storyteller of Haida ancestry Patrick Shannon (CAN) who tackles important First Nations topics; and CEO of the Australia Council Adrian Collette.

Artstate Tamworth’s exciting arts program is open to the public and will include an amazing  open-air concert, Girrabul Murris (talented Murris), featuring country music legend Roger Knox (aka the Koori King of Country, or “Black Elvis”) alongside local musicians; an eclectic mix of contemporary musicians; and Pulitzer-Prize winning play I Am My Own Wife performed by Tamworth actor Daniel Gillet.

The visual arts program contains three new exhibitions including Exploded Textiles which features contemporary textile-based works that celebrate Tamworth’s famous focus on textile art; Art Word Place featuring ekphrastic works by key New England writers inspired by the best of the area’s visual artists; and Warrabara by Kamilaroi weaver Amy Hammond who is working with local weavers to create a massive woven turtle to be installed in the Tamworth Regional Gallery. Light – Art – The Night, referencing Tamworth as the first city in the southern hemisphere to install electric street lighting, will feature five local artists projecting work onto buildings across Tamworth, including work by renowned Kamilaroi artist Reko Rennie.

Chair of Regional Arts NSW, Julie Briggs said, “This, our third Artstate event, will showcase the dynamic, diverse and innovative arts and cultural activities that occur in regional NSW. Regional Arts NSW hopes that people from both  the regions and  metropolitan areas will take the opportunity to immerse themselves in the exciting conference program and mix of cultural events that demonstrates the depth and breadth of regional arts practice in NSW.”

Minister for the Arts, the Hon Don Harwin MLC, said, “I’m very excited Artstate in 2019 will travel to the ‘city of lights’ to shine the spotlight on our region’s talented musicians, visual artists and storytellers with a program brimming with home-grown talent. This year’s themes of On Country – In Country and Arts in the Age of Uncertainty will undoubtedly prompt fascinating discussion amongst our best creative minds. The NSW Government is delighted to continue its role as key sponsor of Artstate and I encourage you all to join me in Tamworth this October.”


Goldheist (Hester Fraser) entertaining guests


Kim McKay AO, Australian Museum


Tamworth Region Mayor, Cr. Col Murray


Aunty Millie Ingram welcoming guests to country