Artists, creatives, collectives or cultural practitioners who have contributed to and championed the development of a thriving, interconnected, diverse, inclusive and resilient creative community.
Contribution of the Year - Ona Henderson and Syd Tunn
Ona Henderson and her husband, Syd Tunn, created an open studio program in 1983 in the Bend of Islands. This became a formalised council program in 1987 - the Nillumbik Artists Open Studio Program (NAOS). As volunteers, Ona and Syd dedicated 38 years to the nurturing of the Nillumbik Artist Open Studios Program and they continue to be honorary members and champions for the program. In addition to their work with NAOS, Ona and Syd are founding members and mentors of Butterfly Studio, a community art studio established to address the impact of the 2009 bushfires. Under their guidance, the studio strongly advocates that art in its many forms is not only cross cultural, cross generational and non- gender specific, but is also a powerful conduit for community strengthening and recovery. Ona and Syd are icons of the Nillumbik art world and living treasures in terms of the knowledge they hold on Nillumbik’s art history. Their lives are immersed in art and in the local community. Ona and Syd have been working artists for over 60 years, and in between painting and creating, they are currently writing the history of the Open Studios Program which will serve as a legacy for the program.
Terry and Sheila Beaton
Recognition for Contribution