Projects

Kaiela Arts delivers a range of programs and workshops throughout the year for both Aboriginal artists and non-Aboriginal community members, to facilitate intercultural immersion and understanding.

Our studio is an accessible and culturally safe environment for artists, students and the general public to connect and create art in a variety of forms, from clay making to painting and weaving.

 

Read more about our current and upcoming programs and projects to find out how you can get involved.

Youth Programs

 

We provide an important space for inter-generational connections to be made through our youth projects and programs. These allow our children and young people to explore their creativity and connect to culture as they develop their own sense of identity. The artwork of our younger peoples is proudly displayed in our gallery alongside the work of our senior artists and Elders.

 

Indigenous Futurisms

 

Our young people have had the opportunity to work with Yorta Yorta creatives to imagine self-determined Indigenous futures in an expressive sound and screen installation that was co-presented with Indiginerd, YIRRAMBOI and SIGNAL. Through workshops at Kaiela Arts, artists imagined visions of Yorta Yorta community, woka (country), and homes. Themes of their conversation were brought together in a series of creative illustrations accompanied by energising soundscapes and presented at Yirramboi in May 2023.

 

Deadly Decks

 

Our Deadly Decks program provided a space for local First Nations children and young people to learn about Aboriginal art making and visual language, exploring their own creativity and connections to culture, and painting a series of skateboard decks to tell their stories. This project was generously supported by Rumbalara Aboriginal Cooperative to provide connection and healing through cultural arts for young people.

Wurta School Holiday Program

 

During school holidays in 2023 we have been running our Wurta School Holiday Program. Local First Nations kids from the ages of 10 to 18 explored their creativity and brought their stories and culture to life through painting, weaving, dancing and ceramics. Local Yorta Yorta artists shared knowledge and techniques, building the confidence and skills of these young people who are our next generation of creatives and storytellers

 

Elders Projects

Elders are the backbone of our community, the cultural knowledge-keepers and sharers, nurturers, activists, and leaders whose strength has ensured the survival of our community over many generations. They keep culture, Country, language, and kin, strong and connected, they create safe spaces and belonging, and they encourage intergenerational teaching and learning. We regularly host Elders in our studio to support their continuing artistic creations.

Elders Cultural Arts Program

We have collaborated with the Rumbalara Elders Facility to develop a pilot program that focuses on new ways of working and sharing of cultural arts practices to enhance and sustain the wellbeing of our local Elders and younger generations alike. The program identifies and embeds cultural determinants of health that bring benefits for older and younger people, as well as for staff who care for our Elders.

Artist Development

Our artists are always exploring ways that they can develop their practice, learn new skills and experiment with different media and techniques to bring stories and ancient knowledge systems to life. We provide a range of opportunities for artist development and training across multiple art mediums.

In recent years we have engaged in ceramics production techniques, screenprinting workshops, cross-cultural knowledge sharing, zero-waste methods for preparing canvases, and sent some of our artists to First Nations arts and culture events.

Spacecraft Screenprinting Studio and Training Project Through our innovative working relationship with Spacecraft, a Melbourne-based design studio, we provided training in 2023 for several of our arts workers and artists to learn how to develop their screenprinting skills. We have now set up a dedicated screen-printing space in our studio and are looking forward to continuing to experiment and producing new products for display and sale in the gallery.

Numbulwar Numburindi X Kaiela Arts Weavers’ Exchange

In 2023 we hosted several Numbulwar Numburindi Arts’ senior weavers, from East Arnhem Land, to spend an afternoon with local weavers from all along the river. This allowed artists to share techniques and knowledge, yarn, and tell stories. The artists brought examples of their Wulbung (baskets) and Yir (dillybags) and gifted us with a beautiful pandanus basket by Joy Wilfred. One of our local weavers and arts workers, Ally Knight, returned the gesture gifting the visitors some of her own woven necklaces. We hope to continue this connection and visit their Country one day!