Ballina mayor David Wright and NSW parliamentary secretary for energy and the arts, Ben Franklin.
Ballina mayor David Wright and NSW parliamentary secretary for energy and the arts, Ben Franklin.

Community gallery gets $85K grant for upgrade

THE Northern Rivers Community Gallery will receive $84,971 from the NSW Government to support young creatives.

The funding will be used to update the gallery’s facilities and that of Ignite Studios and support its Creative Lifelong Learning programs.

NRCG director Melitta Firth explained there will be a kiln installed at Ignite Studios.

“(It) will allow us to expand our creative programs to include ceramics, which will be used for youth and adult creative programs, visiting artists completing residencies, community projects and the broader community,” she said.

“Until now we have not had access to firing facilities and this will make a wider range of new projects feasible.”

The planned upgrades also include installation of a wheelchair lift at Ignite Studios, allowing more space for creative education and experimental projects in the Engine room, while maintaining accessibility.

In the gallery, there will be new media players and projectors, Ms Firth said.

“One will be an interactive projector, which allows the audiences to interact and play with the digital projections and new media art being projected.”

Nationals Member of the Legislative Council Ben Franklin said the funding will ensure creativity can continue to thrive on the Northern Rivers.

“Art is so important for expression and is such a wonderful tool for young people to explore ideas, concepts and improve their creative skills,” Mr Franklin said.

“The new installations will ensure the studio and gallery can present and develop first-rate multi-arts projects with young people and, through Creative Lifelong Learning, support workshops, exhibitions, residencies and community events.

Ballina Shire Mayor David Wright said the funding would be a welcome boost to local arts.

“NRCG will also benefit from audiovisual upgrades with new media players and projectors which will extend the Gallery’s ability to exhibit interactive digital projections and new media works.”,” Cr Wright said.

NRCG is located at 44 Cherry St, Ballina, while Ignite Studios are at 60 Crane St. For details visit