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Jamie-Lea Trindall - creativity shines in the far west

Jamie-Lea Trindall is the Executive Director of Outback Arts.

Born in Coonamble NSW, Jamie-Lea completed her HSC at Coonamble High School and went on to undertake her Bachelor of Art Education College of Fine Arts UNSW, with a major in Sculpture and a minor in Photography, immersing herself in Art Education, Aboriginal history and the research roles of arts workers. In 2009 Jamie-Lea returned to her hometown to take on the role of Executive Director for Outback Arts. 

Her own art works are inspired by her family’s aboriginal story, tracing knowledge lost within the family through traditional weaving techniques using natural and contemporary materials.

Jamie-Lea’s work has been exhibited as part of String theory: Focus on contemporary Australian art 2013 which brought together over 30 Aboriginal artists and artist groups from across the country at the Museum of Contemporary Art Sydney and also in Country: Connective understanding: a focus through contemporary Aboriginal art a Collateral event at 56th Venice Biennale 2015. Her passion towards community practice has played an integral role in her own artistic achievements in the role of Outback Arts Executive Director.


Tell us about your role at Outback Arts?

I am the Executive Director of Outback Arts and Curator at the new Outback Arts Creative Arts Centre in Coonamble. Outback Arts is the Regional Arts Development Organisation for the Far Western region which covers 164,000 km² with a population of 26,000 people across seven local government areas.

As the Executive Director in such a remote part of the state, my role is extremely varied from one day to the next. With our core business to build cultural capacity and creative communities, I am often found planning programs from my desk in Coonamble or delivering programs and activities across the region.

How does arts and cultural practice in your region differ to other regions?

I feel like the arts in our region shines brighter than in others, although I am perhaps a little biased! The creativity in our region constantly amazes and inspires me. People are so resilient and innovative. There is definitely a concentration on visual arts and music, with the landscape and country lifestyle lending itself freely to the creative way of life, and it’s a great base for people of the creative side hustle economy.

You’ve recently celebrated the opening of the Creative Arts Centre in Coonamble. Can you tell us about the Centre?

Our Creative Arts Centre is a fabulous space housing our regional office, a huge shopfront full of regionally made art, two gallery spaces, meeting rooms, workshop space and storage for our collections. We were successfully granted Arts and Cultural Infrastructure funding from the NSW Government to purchase and redevelop the site.

We have been operating in the space for 12 months and in that time, our exhibitions change over every six weeks, regular community activities are held in the building, with visitors and sales increasing each month.

The Centre has provided our region with something incredible that we had desperately needed and that is a professional gallery space for our regional artists to exhibit in and be directly supported by in their arts career.

What are some of the key upcoming events on the calendar for Outback Arts?

We have just recently launched our Living Arts & Culture publication (and exhibition). We are very excited to be bringing the publication with our artists and their work to the South East Aboriginal Arts Market at Carriageworks on the 9th and 10th November 2019. The exhibition is currently touring NSW.

As part of this project we are relaunching the Living Arts & Culture website with a fresh approach to presenting our regions most celebrated Aboriginal artists and knowledge holders, that are living vibrant and culturally rich lives in this regional part of NSW.

We are also in the process changing over our exhibitions from the Annual Outback Archies, an amazing exhibition of artwork from across the far west to the next event; Art4Ag a photography exhibition celebrated with a 3 course meal for 80 people in the gallery on the 21st November which is National Agriculture Day, in partnership with the local CWA and Landcare.