The peak body protecting and promoting the Australian visual arts sector

Celebrating two years of NAVA Queensland

Today NAVA’s current Queensland project work draws to a close, and sadly, we farewell Sophie Chapman as Queensland Program Coordinator.

Sophie has been an exceptional project developer, facilitator and advocate across the past 18 months. Her considered work in building strong relationships with Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists and organisations has created meaningful opportunities for artists to develop and test ideas. Her courage, passion and above-and-beyond dedication has seen Sophie devote significant expertise to NAVA Queensland, and we thank Sophie wholeheartedly for her commitment to supporting contemporary arts practice.  

Since 2016, Carley Commens and then Sophie Chapman have coordinated a diverse range of NAVA QLD projects and collaborations. Among many other projects, Sophie has led the Blak Curatorial Exchange in partnership with BlakLash, the Independent Publishing Now forum in partnership with Tess Maunder and Museum of Brisbane, the ARI Mentoring Program in partnership with Cut Thumb ARI, and a range of workshops and roundtables.

We thank Sophie and Carley for their outstanding work, and also a huge thanks to Arts Queensland and Flying Arts for the partnerships that made this work possible.

In Queensland, a new configuration of state-wide partnerships will foster regional practice across all artforms. Access Community Services (Ipswich and Logan), Central Queensland University (Central Queensland), Creative Arts Alliance (South-East Queensland North), Empire Theatre Projects (South-West Queensland) and Red Ridge (Western Queensland) will each service specific regions, with Arts Queensland focusing on Far North Queensland, and Queensland Music Festival servicing North Queensland as well as coordinating the entire effort. At the same time, Flying Arts Alliance has recently joined the regional arts organisations to deliver the Regional Arts Fund and build regional arts capacity.

NAVA will be looking closely at this new model before proposing our next ideas. As we plan our next steps, Artlands will also be an important time of national focus for considering how best to focus NAVA’s next regional and state-wide projects in Queensland and beyond.

Congratulations and thanks once again to Sophie and Carley, and to all artists, curators and partner organisations who’ve been pivotal to the success of this important work.

- Esther Anatolitis and everyone at NAVA

Image: L-R, Jo-Anne Driessens and Sophie Chapman 

Photo by LaVonne Bobongie