Welcome to the Creative Barkly Project Update for October 2017. The year is rapidly marching to a close and we have much to report from our extensive field research that happened during July-August.
Field Trip July/August: The team spent nearly five weeks in the Barkly Region, launching the survey for individual artists and creative producers at the Tennant Creek Show on 14th July. There was a fantastic response to our stall at the Show, with many people coming by to visit us and complete the survey on site. It was a great opportunity to publicize the project and achieve a groundswell of community support. In the weeks following the Show, the team continued to conduct surveys face-to-face with artists at Barkly Regional Arts, Nyinkka Nyunyu, other sites around Tennant Creek, and in the communities of Marlinja, Elliott, Mungkarta and Ali Curung. During this time, we also recorded interviews with some key representatives from arts and non-arts organisations delivering arts programs in the region. These included Nyinkka Nyunyu, Arlpwe Art and Culture Centre (Ali Curung), the Red Cross, the Women’s Shelter and Barkly Regional Arts. The surveys continued over the Desert Harmony Festival, with artists participating from all over the region. The team set up the Creative Barkly stall in sites around the festival, and even outside the local food barn. At the time of writing, there have been 104 surveys completed, which is a great response, given the low number and sparseness of the population as a whole.
Linda Aplin at Nyinkka Nyunyu Gerry and Dawn McCarthy (L) and Kirsty Eberl (R) at the CB Stall
Plans Going Forward – Following on from the July/August field trip, the team has met to discuss outcomes from the survey implementation and potential case studies for the next phase. Key decisions going forward include:
- Preparing a preliminary report for project partners and stakeholders from the 104 survey responses gathered so far. This report will detail early findings and emerging themes, and will help the team to identify where there may still be gaps. The survey will continue into early 2018 in order to respond to these.
- Undertaking a short field trip in November 2017 that will be focused on conducting sector interviews in Alice Springs with representatives from organisations such as Desart, IRCA, and Artback NT, as well as building further relationships in Ampilatwatja and Utopia for further implementation of the survey.
- Identifying case studies for the next phase of the project. These will be determined by the team in the coming months based on findings from the survey, and criteria that will enable a representative cross section of cultures, art forms and approaches to be addressed through the research. We look forward to commencing fieldwork for the case studies early in the new year.
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