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THE ARTS CENTRE GOLD COAST

INNOVATE RECONCILIATION ACTION PLAN 2014 – 2016


2 | The Arts Centre Gold Coast | Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan

Our Vision for Reconciliation The Arts Centre Gold Coast (TACGC) is underpinned by values of integrity, creativity, inclusion, collaboration, recognition and excellence. We aim to utilise these core values in our efforts towards reconciliation. Over the years, we have built relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders particularly in the areas of performing and visual arts. We hope to continue to work closely with key stakeholders to enhance these relationships as well as develop a better understanding of how we can play an integral role in the community.

Front Cover: Craig Tapp, Stingray Hunting 2014, Sand Art South Stradbroke Island Artist Camp, 17-23 March 2014 Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens

Opposite: South Stradbroke Island Artist Camp, 17-23 March 2014 Glennys Briggs, Artist Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens


4 | The Arts Centre Gold Coast | Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan

Our Business The Arts Centre was first named ‘The Keith Hunt Community Entertainment and Arts Centre’ and known as ‘The Centre’. It was officially opened in December 1986 and is owned and managed by the Gold Coast City Council. In 1993, the Gold Coast City Council formed the Gold Coast Arts Centre Proprietary Company Limited as a separate legal entity. The purpose of this was to diversify funding income, deepen community engagement and increase marketplace flexibility. The Gold Coast City Council is the sole shareholder in the company and continues to provide the majority of funding. In 1996, The Arts Café was added to the complex, and in 2004 an extension was built, comprising a new cinema, two function rooms, and an administration area. As of March 2010, the Gold Coast Arts Centre was renamed, rebranded, refurbished and relaunched as The Arts Centre Gold Coast, as part of an ongoing change of strategic direction. The Arts Centre Gold Coast (TAGCC) is a registered trading name of Gold Coast Arts Centre Pty Ltd. Today, we are Gold Coast’s premier cultural facility bringing visual and performing arts to residents of South East Queensland. The Centre houses an Arts Theatre, Art Gallery, Paradise Showroom, two Cinemas, the Arts Café as well as several function rooms and two smaller performance spaces – The Basement and The Space.

Our Gallery houses the city collection of contemporary and historic artworks with a significant proportion being Aboriginal art. The Board of TACGC is the custodian of the art collection, valued at approximately $21.3 million and has management responsibility for the facilities valued at $13 million. We employ 45 permanent full time staff, 10 permanent part time staff including one part-time Aboriginal employee, 75 casuals and engage more than 200 artists in a paid capacity each year. Our artistic program consists of performing and visual arts initiatives that focus on supporting established and emerging artists while creating pathways that enable people from all walks of life to engage in cultural activity. Annually, more than 500,000 people attend 6,000 events held at TACGC across a variety of activity including theatre performances, art exhibitions, cinema screenings, education programs, free public events, workshops, artist talks and hospitality based events. L-R Virginia Rigney, Maureen Newton, Debra Witalik & Destry Puia Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens Artwork in background: Ningura Napurulla b. c1938 – d. 2013, Australia/WA – (Pintupi) Gift of Pat Corrigan AM under the cultural gifts program, 2012 Gold Coast City Gallery


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Our RAP The development of our Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) was instigated by our Public Programs Coordinator in late 2013 whilst working in collaboration with Yugambeh Museum for the launch of their Write into Art education program which would then encourage schools to connect the Saltwater Country exhibition in our Gallery to their NAIDOC week programming. A gap had been identified and our RAP journey began in earnest in early 2014. Whilst relationships with Australia’s First Peoples had been firmly ingrained in the culture of The Arts Centre Gold Coast for many years via various collaborative projects and exhibitions, the Centre’s vision had never been formalised. Several enthusiastic employees met to discuss the various projects that were either already in the pipeline or could be developed. The beginning of our vision for reconciliation was born and as a consequence, our RAP Working Group was formed. The Working Group is led by our General Manager, Mr Destry Puia and consists of: • Mr John Walsh, Gallery Manager • Ms Virginia Rigney, Senior Curator • Ms Jodi Ferrari, Public Programs Coordinator • Ms Jo-Anne Driessens, Indigenous Coordinator • Mr Brad Rush, Performing Arts Manager • Ms Debra Witalik, Business Support Executive

Our RAP Working Group has met with various Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations including Yugambeh Museum and the Aboriginal Centre for Performing Arts as well as members from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to gain input into the development of our inaugural RAP. Our journey to date has included our Business Support Executive attending a RAP Learning Circle thereby widening contact with the community and bringing new found knowledge to the group, gaining valuable advice from First Nation elders and educating our staff to ensure a meaningful and sustainable Reconciliation Action Plan. Our Innovate RAP will raise awareness with our stakeholders, both internally and externally, to ensure there is shared understanding and ownership of our RAP within our organisation. Development of our future RAPs will involve consultation with staff across our organisation including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff and/or stakeholders to achieve our vision for reconciliation in building stronger relationships, greater mutual respect and opportunities for Australia’s First Peoples. Write into Art meeting, The Arts Centre Gold Coast, 31 January 2014 L-R Debra Witalik, Kerri Meikle, Jodi Ferrari, Karen Graham, Rory O’Connor and Destry Puia. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens


6 | The Arts Centre Gold Coast | Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan

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Erub Erwer Meta, Darnley Island Arts Centre, Saltwater Country workshop, 28 April – 2 May 2014. Florence Gutchen, Erub Artist. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens Dr Pat Corrigan AM, Gina Allain & Mavis Ngallametta, After Dark Program, Saltwater Country, 21 August 2014. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens Destry Puia, General Manager TACGC and Tim Acker, Curtin University, Principal Research Leader, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Economies Project, Cooperative Research Centre for Remote Economic Participation. After Dark Program, Beyond Dots, Gold Coast City Gallery, 10 July 2014. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens Djuki Mala (Chooky Dancers) performance, with Yugambeh dancers, 11 March 2014. Baykali Ganambarr, Mitch Taylor, Luther Cora, Wakara Gondara, Jay Thompson, Mitchell Rang Garrawirrtja. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens Erub Erwer Meta, Darnley Island Arts Centre, Saltwater Country workshop, 28 April – 2 May 2014. Jimmy Thaiday, Erub Artist and Judy Watson, Art workshop facilitator. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens Special screening of The Sapphires, hosted by Bond University in partnership with The Arts Centre Gold Coast. Rob Appo and Ted Williams. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens Jonathan Richards & Michael Aird, After Dark Program, Saltwater Country, 21 August 2014. Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens


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Our partnerships/current activities We have continued our commitment to promote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts programs through the delivery of the performance of Djuki Mala (Chooky Dancers) and Dewayne Everettsmith on the theatre stage in March 2014. This performance coincided with the launch of Yugambeh Museum’s Write into Art education project launch which encourages schools to connect our Gallery’s Saltwater Country exhibition and associated gallery activities to their NAIDOC week programming in July. Additional activities were conducted around the Centre including a smoking ceremony, Welcome to Country, an impromptu performance by William Barton, one of Australia’s finest traditional didgeridoo players and a leading didgeridoo player in the classical world, the national anthem sung in Yugambeh language as well as various other performances on the terrace stage which made for a truly cultural and memorable experience for all those who attended. In addition, TACGC has developed a partnership with Blak Lines National Indigenous Touring Consortium to collaborate the delivery of the Blak Lines touring circuit at TACGC. TACGC was also proud to present a selection of films from the National Film and Sound Archive as part of NAIDOC Week 2014. The National Film and Sound Archive of Australia is the nation’s living archive, collecting, preserving and sharing our rich audio visual heritage. As part of NAIDOC week 2014, we secured a suite of short and feature length Indigenous films through the Black Screen program which is part of the National Film and Sound Archive. Black Screen provides free on-loan access to a collection of Indigenous films for the purpose of community screening events and festivals throughout the year. In addition, we were also proud to engage with the local Yugambeh community to facilitate a community screening of the acclaimed movie Charlie’s Country in August 2014 which was widely attended. 6

As part of TACGC’s commitment to promoting First Australian People’s visual art, the South Stradbroke Emerging Indigenous Artist Camp was initiated by Gold Coast City Gallery as a significant local companion project to the development of the exhibition Saltwater Country showing from 19 July to 31 August 2014 and was delivered in partnership with the Cultural Development Unit of City of Gold Coast to support the development of local professional arts practice. Following consultation with the community and with Council, Aboriginal artists from the region were invited to apply to participate in the camp and nine where chosen to attend. They spent a week together at the northern end of South Stradbroke Island in March 2014 and undertook a rigorous program of making art that involved both historical and personal research. Under the guidance of lead artist Judy Watson, they had the confidence to experiment with unfamiliar mediums, the opportunity to share and discuss family histories and their impact on lives, and how those stories might be expressed through creative practice. 7

Most importantly, they had the time and support to look closely at the sandy island and its plants and animals on both the western calm water side and the exposed beach on the east, and made direct artistic responses to those places. The results of the camp were presented in a Foyer Gallery exhibition in July 2014. Senior Curator, Virginia Rigney, and Indigenous Officer, Jo-Anne Driessens, co-ordinated the organisation of the camp and worked with local First Australian Peoples mentors, Michael Aird and Maureen Newton, on the island to support the artists. Leading on from this will be an opportunity for students of schools whom have implemented the Write into Art education program to work with the First Australian People’s art exhibiting in Saltwater Country via The Saltwater Project Student Young Artist Immersion Day on 20 August 2014. The retaining of Dr Patrick Corrigan AM, as a member of TACGC’s Board and Chairman of the Gold Coast City Gallery Committee further supported our commitment towards reconciliation. Dr Corrigan AM is a well-known art philanthropist with a significant interest in Aboriginal art and culture. Finally, TACGC gratefully acknowledges the support of Bond University as the Presenting Partner of our Indigenous Program. We look forward to continuing to bring all members of the community together.


8 | The Arts Centre Gold Coast | Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan

Relationships TACGC respects all cultures and individuals and prides itself on offering something for everyone. We are excited to enhance existing and building new relationships with Australia’s First Peoples so that our organisation and the Gold Coast community can continue to learn and grow with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Focus area: Strengthening relationships

Action

Responsibility

Timeline

Target

1.1

TACGC RAP Working Group (RWG) to actively monitor RAP development, including implementation of actions, tracking progress and reporting

General Manager / RWG

November 2014

• TACGC RWG oversees the development, endorsement and launch of the RAP

1.2

TACGC to celebrate and participate in National Reconciliation Week (NRW) by providing opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees and other employees to build stronger relationships

General Manager / RWG

March and September 2015/2016

27 May - 3 June 2015 and 2016

• Meet at least twice per year to monitor and report on RAP implementation • Organise at least one internal event each year • Provide opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees, RWG and Senior Management/Staff to attend community NRW events • Develop and implement a plan to communicate NRW theme and events via team meetings and public website • Organise and display NRW posters in TACGC offices and public areas • Register internal NRW event on Reconciliation Australia website

1.3

1.4

Raise internal awareness of TACGC RAP in order to increase employees understanding and commitment to reconciliation

Develop new and strengthen existing relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, organisations and stakeholders to encourage, support, Australia’s First Peoples cultures in arts

Indigenous Coordinator

General Manager / Performing Arts Manager / Gallery Manager

May 2015

• Develop and implement a plan to raise awareness across TACGC on RAP commitment, particularly with key internal stakeholders

May 2015

• Present and promote RAP commitment to all relevant areas of TACGC to ensure a better understanding of how their area can contribute to the RAP

May 2015

• Ensure RAP is accessible to TACGC employees via website and hardcopy

May 2015

• Establish a list and maintain a database of key Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, organisation and stakeholders in the Arts

September 2016

• Investigate to promote and link emerging and established Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists to TACGC initiatives and other programs through communicating and engaging identified individuals, organisations and stakeholders

September 2016

• Investigate to develop and implement a plan to establish a permanent First Australian Peoples cultural exhibition in collaboration with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations/ stakeholders to feature local performers and artists

September 2015 and 2016

• Continue to strengthen existing partnership with Blak Lines National Indigenous Touring Consortium through consultation and collaboration in delivery of the Indigenous touring circuit at TACGC


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Respect TACGC is the arts and cultural hub of the Gold Coast. TACGC promotes Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander visual and performing arts in its galleries and theatre stage. We embrace First Australian peoples’ histories and cultures as being the cornerstone in providing a genuine Australian experience for our local, national and international patrons. We believe reconciliation is a fundamental step towards Australia’s First Peoples and the broader Australian community coming together and mutual respecting each other’s needs for a long and prosperous future together. Focus area: Cultural education and appreciation of Australia’s First Peoples Action

Responsibility

Timeline

Target

2.1

TACGC to engage employees in under standing cultural protocols around Acknowledgement of Country and Welcome to Country to ensure there is shared meaning behind the ceremonies

General Manager / Corporate Services Manager

September 2015 and 2016

• Review, develop and communicate cultural protocol document/policy to all TACGC employees each year

September 2015 and 2016

• Identify at least one annual significant event for which a Welcome to Country from a Local Traditional Owner will be included

2.2

TACGC to engage employees in cultural learning to increase understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, histories and achievements

General Manager / Corporate Services Manager

May 2015

• In consultation with local Traditional Owners and/or Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural consultant, develop and pilot a cultural awareness training strategy for TACGC

May 2015

• Provide cultural awareness training opportunities to TACGC Executive Managers and RWG to participate in

May 2015

• Investigate and develop a plan to provide cultural awareness training to new staff as part of induction process

1st Sunday – 2nd Sunday in July 2015 and 2016

• Review HR policies and procedures to ensure there are no barriers to staff participating in NAIDOC Week events

2.3

TACGC to celebrate and participate in NAIDOC Week and provide the opportunity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees to engage with their culture and community through NAIDOC Week events

Corporate Services Manager

• Provide opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees to participate in community NAIDOC Week events • Organise and display NAIDOC Week poster in TACGC office and public areas • Develop and implement a plan to communicate NAIDOC theme and events via team meetings, intranet and public website

2.4

Cultural Precinct Artscape parklands adjoining TACGC to include an open space reflecting local Traditional Owners history and connection to land/sea, including art, sculptures, flora and yarning circles

General Manager / Gallery Manager / Senior Curator

September 2015 and 2016

• Ensure TACGC provides input and recommendations to City of Gold Coast regarding Cultural Precinct Artscape to include open space reflecting Traditional Owners history and connection to land/sea


10 | The Arts Centre Gold Coast | Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan

Opportunities TACGC wants all staff to have the same opportunities to progress within our organisation and for there to be awareness among staff of the broader Australian community about the issues and challenges faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities. TACGC also wishes for all members of the Australian community to culturally benefit from their experience with TACGC through our showcasing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander visual and performing arts programs and further to benefit from economic opportunities which may become available. Focus area: Support and promote opportunities at TACGC Action

Responsibility

Timeline

Target

3.1 TACGC to investigate opportunities to increase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employment opportunities

Corporate Services Manager

April 2015

• Review HR procedures and policies including Equal Employment Opportunity policy to ensure barriers to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees are able to be addressed

April 2015

• Engage with existing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff to consult on employment strategies, including professional development

April 2015

• Develop and implement an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employment strategy including training pathways, work experience, work placements, volunteer work

September 2015 and 2016

• Advertise all vacancies in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander media

September 2015

• Review procurement policy barriers to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses are able to be addressed

September 2015

• Develop and communicate list of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander contacts, businesses and suppliers TACGC can procure services from

September 2015

• Investigate commercial opportunities through engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander economic development organisations such as Black Business Finder, South East Queensland Indigenous Chamber of Commerce and Supply Nation

September 2015

• Encourage TACGC employees to utilise established list of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses when procuring services

September 2015

• Investigate the opportunity for native Australian bush food to be catered at TACGC functions, event and The Arts Café

September 2015 and 2016

• Ensure at least one Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts programis promoted and showcased at TACGC each year

September 2015 and 2016

• Ensure at least one Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander visual arts exhibition is promoted and hosted at TACGC each year

September 2015 and 2016

• Develop and pilot a program to support and encourage participation and/or production of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander visual and performing arts works at TACGC

September 2015 and 2016

• Scope and develop a plan for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth and education placements in TACGC which encourages and supports industry knowledge and skill development in the arts and production

September 2015 and 2016

• Investigate the opportunity to provide a sponsorship program for visual and performing arts available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

3.2 Investigate opportunities to increase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander supplier diversity within TACGC

3.3

3.4

TACGC to host, and promote national and local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists visual and performing arts programs

Collaborate with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, organisation and stakeholders to participate in and/or produce visual and performing arts programs for TACGC

Commercial Services Manager

Gallery Manager / Performing Arts Manager

Gallery Manager / Performing Arts Manager / Development Manager


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Tracking progress and reporting

Action

Responsibility

Timeline

Target

4.1

General Manager

Submit by 30th September 2015 and 2016

• Complete and submit the RAP Impact Measurement Questionnaire to Reconciliation Australia annually

Indigenous Coordinator / RWG

Commence September 2016

• Review update and refresh TACGC RAP based on learnings, achievements and challenges from previous RAP and forward to Reconciliation Australia for review and endorsement

TACGC to report achievements, challenges and learnings to Reconciliation Australia for inclusion in the RAP Impact Measurement Report

4.2 Review, update and refresh TACGC RAP

Yallburru, Black and Deadly Sisters with Mavis Ngallametta Saltwater Country artist, visit to Gold Coast City Gallery, 22 August 2014 Photo by Jo-Anne Driessens

Contact details For further details regarding TACGC Reconciliation Action Plan, please contact: Ms Jo-Anne Driessens, Indigenous Coordinator p (07) 5588 4052 e RAP@theartscentregc.com.au


www.theartscentregc.com.au


The Arts Centre Gold Coast — Reconciliation Action Plan (2014—2016)