Entries for the First Nations Awards close Tuesday 11th October. The Awards recognise and celebrate the outstanding work and achievements of First Nations artists across three categories:

Emerging Career Development Award (18-30 years)

The First Nations Emerging Career Development Award was established in 2019 through the generous contributions from staff and board as part of the Australia Council’s Workplace Giving scheme.

Two awards of $10,000 will be given to Australian First Nations artists and arts workers between 18-30 years old to pursue their professional development. This unique opportunity is available in the disciplines of community arts and cultural development, dance, experimental arts, literature, multi-arts, music, theatre and visual arts.


Dreaming Award (18-30 years) 

The Dreaming Award was established in 2012 to support an inspirational young First Nations artist aged 18-30 years to create a major body of work through mentoring and partnerships. The mentor/partner will be another established professional artist or partner nominated by the artist who will guide and mentor the applicant to assist in the development of a new work.

Two Dreaming Awards will be offered in 2023 by the First Nations Strategy Panel. The recipients of these Awards will receive $20,000 each.


Red Ochre Award (Lifetime Achievement)

The prestigious Red Ochre Award was established by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Board in 1993 to pay tribute to a senior Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person for their outstanding lifetime achievement in the arts and their contribution to the recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts, both nationally and internationally.

The Red Ochre Award recognises:

  • lifetime contribution to First Nations Arts nationally and internationally
  • lifetime contribution to the First Nations community
  • artistic leadership and arts practice.

The Dreaming Awards will be presented at the 2023 First Nations Arts Awards, held annually on 27 May marking the anniversary of the 1967 Referendum.

Find out more.