From the Northern Rivers Echo:
If you travel to places with a high population of Aboriginal artists like Alice Springs or Darwin, there’s plenty of venues where you can find and buy local Indigenous art. But in Lismore, such a venue has been virtually non-existent “ until now.
Arts Northern Rivers and Lismore Tourism have put their heads together and created an Indigenous art space at the Lismore Visitor Information Centre so people can enjoy and buy homegrown Bundjalung art.
The centre attracts around 50,000 visitors each year (that’s an average of 140 every day) and in the words of artists Les Evans, it’s an advertisement of what Lismore’s all about “ working together.
There are some very good artists around the area but before this there wasn’t no place to put things anywhere, Les said. Now busloads of tourists can see something of the local culture and they can buy it and they can take it home. It’s a really good idea.
Les said having art for sale on the walls will not only bring about a better understanding of Bundjalung culture and provide income for artists, but also give them a much-needed boost to their self-esteem.
If you have a place like this and your stuff is on the wall it makes you feel proud of what you’re doing and inspires you to do more, he said. When someone likes your art, likes the way you think, it encourages your creativity. Every positive comment feeds you as an artist.
The space will be home to a revolving exhibition called Aboriginal Art of the Northern Rivers and Arts Northern Rivers is now spreading the word so there’s a bank of art from which to continually keep replacing works that are sold. There will be a particular focus on emerging artists and keeping the works fresh so there’s always something new to see.