Supporting Aboriginal arts

Why is this important?

Councils are often the most prominent supporter of local arts and culture. Increasingly more councils are playing an important role in sustaining and promoting Aboriginal arts.

Supporting Aboriginal artists nurtures their creativity, develops skills, builds their profile and can deliver financial returns for the artist.


What can your council do?

Councils can support Aboriginal art and culture in a number of ways. These can include:

  • Commissioning Aboriginal artworks for public and council spaces or for the design of council publications
  • Curating Aboriginal art exhibitions in local galleries
  • Commissioning Aboriginal performances in festivals and events, such as Aboriginal music, dance, comedy, theatre
  • Supporting Aboriginal writers to present at forums such as literary festivals
  • Support Aboriginal community arts projects or workshops
  • Including Aboriginal artists in artist and business networks
  • Supporting local artists through grants, sponsoring exhibitions or joint projects


Councils can support Aboriginal culture in a number of ways. These can include:

  • Ensuring Aboriginal community participation on council arts and culture committees
  • Publicising Aboriginal arts and culture programs.


Sixty of the 77 Councils that responded to the 2012 Victorian Local Government Aboriginal Engagement and Reconciliation Survey reported that they provided varying degrees of support to local Aboriginal artists.


The Koorie Night Market at Northcote Town Hall

The Koorie Night Market at Northcote Town Hall

Darebin City Council supported the establishment of the Koorie Night Market, a key initiative of the former Darebin Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Council. Darebin also supported ArtsDECL incubators, which works with the Aboriginal community both locally and in other regions in Australia.

Last Updated: August 13, 2018 at 8:24 pm

City of Greater Shepparton

Dana Djirrungana Dunguludja Yenbena-I (Proud, Strong, Aboriginal People) – Aboriginal Street Art Project

Dana Djirrungana Dunguludja Yenbena-I (Proud, Strong, Aboriginal People) is a street art project revealing and celebrating Greater Shepparton’s Aboriginal past and present. It features a series of murals highlighting significant historical Aboriginal Elders, bringing their presence into the local landscape. 

The launch of the first mural of Uncle William Cooper and Uncle Doug Nicholls was attended by over 500 people.

Second in the series, the local Aboriginal digger mural, which acknowledges Aboriginal people who fought in the war, was completed in the first week in April 2018.

The third mural in the project featuring Aunty Margaret Tucker (MBE) and Nanny Nora Charles was launched on 29th May 2018.

The murals make up a trail that invites engagement with local Aboriginal history and culture.  The project aims to instill pride in both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and to collectively celebrate the Indigenous community and its history.





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