Northern Territory

Indigenous Arts Exchange with Taiwan

A new Artist in Residence Exchange program between Australian and Taiwanese Indigenous artists was formalised with the signing of a Memorandum of Collaboration at the Council for Indigenous Peoples building in Taiwan.

The Northern Territory Government through Arts NT is leading an Australian international arts engagement in Taiwan with a $100,000 contribution towards the two-year Indigenous Arts Exchange artist in residence initiative with matched funding from the Taiwan Indigenous Peoples Cultural Development Centre (IPCDC) and the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Department of Tourism and Culture Director of Arts NT Angela Hill said the Arts Exchange was the first time a multi-year agreement had been signed for an arts and cultural initiative between the governments of these two countries, which will see Indigenous artists from Australia and Taiwan take reciprocal residencies in host organisations.

“Australia and Taiwan are both home to vibrant Indigenous arts scenes and this exchange program will strengthen collaboration and create opportunities for Indigenous cultural representatives of both nations to expand into the international arena,” Ms Hill said.

“Building on existing partnerships, development and showcasing opportunities for Northern Territory and Taiwanese artists and arts organisations in both countries will deepen understanding of our First Nations art and cultural value.”

The mutual aims of the Indigenous Artist Exchange is to highlight:

  • the diversity of First Nations experiences
  • promote the cultures, languages and histories; and
  • provide audiences with sophisticated modern representations of First Nations perspectives.

The Exchange will be implemented by Artback NT on behalf of the Department of Tourism and Culture in Darwin and the Indigenous Peoples Cultural Development Centre in Taiwan.

Between January 2018 and December 2019 an Indigenous artist from the Northern Territory and Taiwan will undertake a six week residency each year in each other’s respective countries with opportunities to also showcase their works.

The Australia and Taiwan Indigenous arts scene has been building relationships with key organisational partners since 2013 with past exchanges including music, dance and art exhibitions with highlights including:

  • the 2017 November music exchange which created new pathways for Indigenous Taiwanese and Australian musicians to collaborate on a musical performance and broaden their recognition both nationally and internationally
  • the 2016 November tour of NT Indigenous band B2M who performed at the Pulima Indigenous Arts Festival in Taiwan
  • the 2016 Taiwan tour of Victorian Nunugul Yuggera dance troupe and Ibijerri Theatre producer in residence project in Taiwan; and
  • the 2015 Taiwan tour of the ‘Canning Stock Route’ Australian contemporary digital art exhibition and tour of ‘Black Arm Band’ who participated in the Taipei Arts Festival.

Source: NT Government

Featured Image: B2M performing at the Pulima Festival, photo by Artback NT

Image courtesy of NT Government