Living in Alice

Arts @ Council

Alice Springs Town Coun­cil Art Collection

Alice Springs Town Council’s art col­lec­tion con­sists of over 350 art­works and rep­re­sents sev­er­al decades of award-win­ning art­works from the Cal­tex Art Award (lat­er known as the NT Art Award) and the Alice Prize.

Pieces acquired by the Cen­tral Aus­tralian Art Soci­ety and the Alice Springs Art Foun­da­tion, between 1968 and today, have been gen­er­ous­ly donat­ed to Coun­cil for the peo­ple of Alice Springs. The col­lec­tion com­pris­es a note­wor­thy 30% of the Aralu­en Art Col­lec­tion, where it is com­mon­ly held, and fea­tures around 20 paint­ed boards from the ear­ly Papun­ya peri­od – the start of the West­ern Desert Art Move­ment, famous for its Abo­rig­i­nal dot paintings.

Council’s Civic Cen­tre is home to the extra­or­di­nary Bat­tle for the Spinifex series (shown above) by then local artist, Kaye Kess­ing – 11 paint­ings high­light­ing the fer­al ani­mal prob­lem in Cen­tral Aus­tralia. Kaye’s vibrant and enter­tain­ing art­works were also used as scene back­drops for an edu­ca­tion­al play which toured Aus­tralia in 1990.

Pub­lic Art

There are numer­ous pub­lic art­works to see in Alice Springs. So much so, that Coun­cil has pre­pared a free map, high­light­ing the loca­tions of dozens of murals, sculp­tures, dec­o­ra­tive tiles and func­tion­al art­works. More than 20 art­works can be found with­in the Todd Mall and CBD area and more are added each year, sup­port­ed by Council’s Pub­lic Art Advi­so­ry Committee.

In Sep­tem­ber 2020 Coun­cil launched its inter­ac­tive online pub­lic art map — www​.alice​springs​.nt​.gov​.au/​a​rtmap The map is a key objec­tive of the Alice Springs Town Council’s Arts and Cul­tur­al Plan and has been devel­oped in col­lab­o­ra­tion with artists, the com­mu­ni­ty and proud­ly pro­duced by local busi­ness. Hav­ing the abil­i­ty to view online, vis­it, learn and engage with more than 60 pub­lic art­works is a ben­e­fit to both locals and vis­i­tors to Alice Springs. The map was joint­ly fund­ed by Coun­cil and the North­ern Ter­ri­to­ry Gov­ern­ment through the Vis­i­tor Expe­ri­ence Enhance­ment Program.

Pub­lic art serves to cel­e­brate our her­itage and cul­tur­al diver­si­ty by cre­at­ing visu­al land­marks, which act as nat­ur­al gath­er­ing places for local sto­ry­telling and infor­ma­tion-shar­ing. Pub­lic art also enhances the visu­al expe­ri­ence for vis­i­tors and encour­age emo­tion­al con­nec­tions with our unique­ly cre­ative town.

Hard copies of the Alice Springs Pub­lic Art Map are freely avail­able from many vis­i­tor sites around town, or down­load one to your smart phone, here.

Alice Springs Town Coun­cil also has a reg­istry of pub­lic art in Alice Springs. If you would like more infor­ma­tion on a spe­cif­ic art work or works, please con­tact Council. 

Alice Springs Town Coun­cil has devel­oped a 10-year Pub­lic Art Mas­ter­plan after exten­sive con­sul­ta­tions with res­i­dents and the cre­ative and cul­tur­al sec­tor. This Pub­lic Art Mas­ter­plan defines the vision, prin­ci­ples and a frame­work to guide deci­sion-mak­ing on future pub­lic art. It builds on exist­ing pub­lic art prac­tices and poli­cies and will help the Coun­cil to sup­port the devel­op­ment of a rel­e­vant, diverse and excit­ing col­lec­tion of pub­lic art in Alice Springs that is recog­nised as being of a high stan­dard with­in Aus­tralia and abroad.

    Pub­lic Art Advi­so­ry Committee

    Council’s Pub­lic Art Advi­so­ry Com­mit­tee (PAAC) is com­prised of local gov­ern­ment Elect­ed Mem­bers, Coun­cil staff and mem­bers of the pub­lic, and meets each month to dis­cuss the plan­ning, devel­op­ment and main­te­nance of pub­lic art in Alice Springs. The gen­er­al pub­lic is wel­come to attend.

    If you are inter­est­ed in attend­ing any of Council’s advi­so­ry com­mit­tee meet­ings, infor­ma­tion and dates can be found here. http://​www​.alice​springs​.nt​.gov​.au/​g​o​v​e​r​n​a​n​c​e​/​m​e​e​t​i​n​g​s​/​m​e​e​t​i​n​g​-​i​n​f​o​r​m​ation

    Alice Springs Town Coun­cil – Arts and Cul­tur­al Policy

    In 2007, the new­ly-formed PAAC devel­oped Alice Springs Town Council’s first Arts and Cul­tur­al Pol­i­cy, in response to an arts fund­ing ini­tia­tive by the NT gov­ern­ment. Council’s pol­i­cy pro­vides a frame­work to ensure a stan­dard of pro­fes­sion­al excel­lence in the plan­ning and exe­cu­tion of all pub­lic art projects.

    The present Arts and Cul­tur­al Pol­i­cy 20172021 pro­vides strate­gic direc­tion in mak­ing arts and cul­ture an intrin­sic part of the char­ac­ter, econ­o­my and appeal of Alice Springs. The doc­u­ment will sup­port and guide future Coun­cil deci­sions in rela­tion to arts and cul­tur­al pro­grams, facil­i­ties and investments.

    A copy of the cur­rent Alice Springs Town Coun­cil Arts and Cul­tur­al Pol­i­cy 20172021 can be found here.

    Alice Springs Town Coun­cil – Arts and Cul­tur­al Plan

    The Alice Springs Town Coun­cil Arts and Cul­tur­al Plan 2017- 2021 aims to ensure the local arts and cul­tur­al sec­tor has the skills, resources and resilience to meet the greater ambi­tion of build­ing a strong and engaged com­mu­ni­ty, through the arts. Pub­lic art in Alice Springs is inte­grat­ed into the Places and Spaces action area of this plan.

    A copy of the cur­rent Alice Springs Town Coun­cil Arts and Cul­tur­al Plan 20172021 can be found here.

    Arts in the Community

    Join­ing a local arts group or work­shop can be a rich­ly reward­ing social ven­ture for new res­i­dents to Alice Springs. Here are a few key con­tacts to begin your cre­ative journey: