The Campbelltown Arts Centre is set to undergo a remarkable transformation with $79 million from the NSW Government’s $420 million community infrastructure development fund. This large portion of the funding has been allocated to Campbelltown City Council to upgrade Campbelltown’s largest attraction – the Campbelltown Art Centre.
Renowned for its unique creative and thought-provoking exhibitions, the Campbelltown Art Centre has provided opportunities to raise awareness about issues concerning minority groups and the wider Campbelltown community.
Wiradjuri artist Karla Dickens recently showcased her exhibition called ‘Embracing Shadows’, presenting artworks that focus on Indigenous communities. Her work is crafted around female identity, Aboriginal injustices, colonial history, and the politics of Australian culture.
With the intention of promoting Indigenous Art, the Campbelltown City Council is actively reviewing existing Aboriginal art within the community and exploring opportunities to expand in surrounding areas. Some Campbelltown residents admit to being unaware of Aboriginal art surrounding the community, acknowledging their knowledge is limited to what has been displayed at the art centre.
Resident Suzie Hannaka believes this upgrade is instrumental in cultivating a thriving cultural scene and educating the community.
“Campbelltown would build more culture. I think the galleries are a way to educate people,” she says.
One notable location where Indigenous art has made its mark is the mural at Minto train station, situated in the heart of Campbelltown. However, residents say the mural was illustrated several years ago without further marks made throughout other parts of the community.
They also express interest in seeing more Indigenous art around the community and, most favourably, discovering more about colonial history and its effects on the Indigenous community.
Campbelltown City Council envisions cementing its reputation as a “premier cultural institution” and plans to expand its facilities accordingly. The NSW government has demonstrated its commitment towards upgrading the Campbelltown Arts Centre after the Government’s $5 billion WestInvest program.
Treasurer Matt Kean also expressed his commitment to Campbelltown, stating, “Campbelltown Arts Centre will significantly enhance the existing facility… WestInvest funding will ensure more artists, locals, and visitors can enjoy a range of arts and cultural facilities.”
With this generous investment, the Campbelltown Art Centre is set to become an even more vibrant hub for creativity and cultural exploration.