Regional Arts WA


Inspiring stories about the power of arts in regional WA.

Artspiration is 16 stories of individual artists, public arts, cultural tourism initiatives – we’ll be releasing them over the coming months, and you can see them all collected here or stay tuned to the Regional Arts WA stories page to get them each as they come out, along with all kinds of other incredible regional arts stories from around the state.

“We just really wanted to celebrate creative communities doing amazing things.”

– Fiona Sinclair, Artspiration Coordinator

Artspiration is an initiative of The Creative Grid project through the Regional Arts Partnership Program supported by the Departments of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, and Regional Arts WA.

Dead Centre: Creating Conversations Through Collaboration

The first episode in the Artspiration series gives you a look at this incredible exhibition on minority experiences in Australia. Dead Centre has toured Western Australia with the super smart folks at Art on the Move, and this video takes a look at some of the learnings from that experience!

You can learn more about Dead Centre here.

Bequesting Art to a Community

The second episode in the Artspiration series explores Bridgetown local resident Henry Schapper’s bequest to create more public art in the South West town. Shire of Bridgetown-Breenbushes CEO Tim Clynch, Artsource’s Nichola Zed and Artist Helen Seiver discuss what it means to receive a bequest, and how Schapper’s bequest was used to make a contemplative space the whole community could enjoy.

You can read more about the work which was created from this bequest at ArtSource.

Evolution of the Surfboard: Engaging communities with travelling exhibitions

The third episode in the Artspiration series brings us the story of Cannery Arts Centre as they find a way to really enliven the Esperance community with Wayne Winchester’s exhibit “Evolution of the Surfboard” – first created in Albany.

There were challenges, but the results were well worth it – listen in to Cannery’s Paul Ricciardo to see just how it was done!

More information can be found about the exhibit here.

Transforming Community with Art: Heartwalk Kalgoorlie

Artspiration episode 4 takes us into the newly beautified heart of Kalgoorlie-Boulder, freshly drenched with incredible murals thanks to a massive community arts project.

Heartwalk Creative Director Paula Fletcher, Artgold Chairperson Monika Dvorak and artists Jason Dimer and Emily Anders talk about how support from community, investors and volunteers lead to an incredible outcome. Plus, it’s created a huge demand for mural work in Kalgoorlie, which means even more work for artists to come!

For more information on Heartwalk check out the website here.

Growing Together: Engaging youth with public art

In the fifth instalment of Artspiration we head down south to the Esperance Girls Academy as Anna Bonney, Alidea Stack, artist Jennell Reynolds and Esperance Community Arts’ Jane Mulcock tell us how they worked together to create an incredible mural.

This artwork not only beautified the space but helped build room for storytelling and collaboration within the community, filling locals with pride and an eagerness to learn about their families and neighbours!

Rising from the Ashes: Creativity supporting community recovery

The sixth episode of Artspiration draws us into the tale of the incredible Rising From The Ashes project. This work acknowledges the unique role the arts can play in assisting communities recover from collective trauma, in this case in response to the declared national natural disaster, the 2015 Northcliffe bush fire.

Southern Forest Arts’ Fiona Sinclair gives us the full story, from the experiences of those in the town during this crisis, to the shape and power of the work that exists today as a testament to the strength of Northcliffe’s community bonds.

Three Degrees of Separation: Lake Grace and Mount Barker celebrate community and closeness

Artspiration episode 7 takes us to a tale of two towns: Lake Grace and Mount Barker – as they work together to create incredible work that brings their diverse stories beautifully to life and break down the barriers preventing people from enjoying the arts.

What’s with the title? Plantagenet Arts Council’s Marie O’Dea reckons that the arts scene in regional WA is so deeply connected that there can’t be more than three degrees of separation between most folks. It’s a beautiful, close-knit and supportive environment in regional WA arts, as we hear from Marie, plus Tania and Kerrie from Lake Grace Regional Artspace, in this story.

Hard Pressed: Realising the Big Picture Through Community Art

Episode 8 of Artspiration takes us all the way from one person’s idea to an awesome community outcome. It certainly wasn’t easy – Lizzie Robinson went from intending to just hand out woodcuts for people to carve themselves, to running whole carving workshops that let people of any skill level get involved with the Hard Pressed project in its many different roll-outs! *ba-dum, tish*

Lizzy and her brother Geoffrey Myers talk through how the pieces came together, while community artists Jane Barndon and Cam Starcevich tell us about what the work they produced meant for them and their communities. Esperance Community Arts’ Jane Mulcock also the success of their local Hard Pressed. The results from across the state are absolutely incredible – just take a look at the Facebook page for more awesome examples.

From Little Things, Big Things Grow: Northampton & Murchison River Message Sticks

Artspiration Episode 9 takes us to Northampton, where Northampton Old School has renewed old traditions for youth through an incredible arts project that tells the stories of a community in a deeply local way.

Youth Worker Melissa Drage, Lead Artists Colleen and Mauretta Drage and participants D’Marra Drag, Maurissa Drage-Hill and Delilah Whyatt reveal their incredible experiences with the Project. Project Manager Annette Sellers tells us about the challenges and rewards of crafting a project like this and trying to find funding to make it happen.


Ambitious Visions at the Collie Art Gallery

Artspiration #10 takes us down south to Collie, to learn about how Collie built their incredible gallery – the first A-Class gallery built in the state since the Gallery of WA! We also dive into the creation of the Collie Art Prize, which brought incredible work and attention to the gallery!

Collie Art Gallery Chairperson Trudi Curran and Vice Chairperson Donald Clark take us on the journey – and show us some inspiring work and methods along the way!

You can learn more about Collie Art Gallery or the Art Prize on their website here.

Cultivating Contemporary Art through MIX Artists in Albany

For the 11th episode Artspiration we head to the southern coast and take a look at the success of the MIX artist group – who have produced an incredible trove of contemporary artworks through an inclusive, collaborative environment.

MIX Artists Annette Davis and Kate Campbell-Pope tell us about their work with the group, creating a gathering place for folks all across the Great Southern interested in contemporary arts.

You can always find the latest from these incredibly talent folks on their website.

Building Space for Culture with Waringarri Arts

Artspiration #12 brings us to the oldest arts centre in WA for a look at how this incredible place was created, and how it has grown to an organisation with 15 artists across two centres. We also swing by the Revealed arts festival, to hear about the role that plays in bringing arts centres together and promoting emerging artists.

Waringarri Arts Manager Cathy Cummins and Artist/Board Member Dora Griffiths spin us the yarn, and if you’re keen for more head to

Opening opportunities through Margaret River Open Studios

For episode 13, Artspiration shows us the powerful force volunteers and connected communities can have in bringing the arts to the fore.

Open Studios Founding member Bill Castleden tells us how this all came togther, while artists Laurie Posa, Emily Jackson and Fi Wilkie explain how this incredible event has empowered them and given them the inspiration to launch themselves into their work.

To find out more about Margaret River Region Open Studios head over to

Art & Industry: Boosting Community and Mental Health with Explosive Sculpture

Episode 14 of Artspiration places us out near Paraburdoo, where sculptor Alex Mickle tells us how he partnered with Rio Tinto and DADAA (represented here by Executive Director David Doyle) to create incredible work with miners on site. A few explosions and some welding later – and the amazing result was a monument to the history happening right now in the tale of Australia’s relationship with mining.

Alex Mickle receives the Regional Arts Legacy Grant from Regional Arts WA and has created a number of inspiring works with communities across WA. You can read more about his latest, Wardandi Boodja, here.

Creative Responses to Place with Understory

Artspiration episode 15 takes us to the beautiful forests of WA’s South West – where the pressure of local logging activity encouraged a community to gather in creativity and express their own vision of the forest through contemporary art.

Southern Forest Arts Project Coordinator Fiona Sinclair, Northcliffe Visitor Centre Manager Wendy Eiby and artist Peter Hill tell us about the challenges and rewards of maintaining a gallery in the bush – and what it has meant for the Northcliffe community.

You can read more about understory here.

Bella Kelly's Artworks: A Legacy to Future Generations

Artspiration #16 takes us on a very personal journey through the influence of Bella Kelly’s work on Australian landscape work, and how some of that story was uncovered in creating an exhibition for the Vancouver Arts Centre, Albany.

Bella Kelly Retrospective curator Annette Davis, Vancouver Arts Centre team leader Amber Cordon, Arts Narrogin’s Debra Hughes-Owen and Karen Keeley, and Bella Kelly’s daughters Caroline and Cheryl Narkle all weigh in on the impact Bella Kelly’s work has had on their lives and local communities.

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