Residents to help paint the big picture for the Shire

Published on 28 June 2019



Nillumbik Shire Council is asking the public to have its say on a number of innovative and far-reaching arts policies including the proposed Regional Art Gallery.


At its ordinary meeting this week, Councillors endorsed three major draft art policies for community consultation including the revised Art Collection Policy and the introduction of a new Public Art Policy.


The Public Arts Policy would see a contribution of one per cent of all major community infrastructure projects being allocated to public art – to be funded either by negotiations with developers, or in the case of civic projects, by the Council.


The feasibility study for a regional art gallery found there was sufficient demand for a gallery and proposes a new cultural hub that would house Council’s valuable collection, act as a destination drawcard and provide a platform for established and emerging local, national and international artists.


Mayor Karen Egan welcomed the findings of the Nillumbik Regional Gallery Feasibility Study Report which was based on extensive feedback from community engagement, research and benchmarking.


“The study found the multi-million dollar gallery would create significant economic and social benefits for our community and add value to the existing visitor experiences on offer in Nillumbik,” Cr Egan said.


“The results show the community wants an iconic precinct that is boldly contemporary and founded on the Shire’s rich arts heritage.”


Other findings were that:

  • The gallery exhibition program needed to be comprehensive and include touring and blockbuster shows.

  • The program needed to offer workshops for artists and a performing arts program including music, theatre, dance, film, concerts and outdoor activities.

  • The gallery would boost tourism and create jobs in the services and hospitality sectors, and would create a cultural hub which would strengthen community identity and foster wellbeing.

  • The architecture needed to be energy efficient, iconic and contemporary while referencing the shire’s landscape and unique heritage. Sites were still being explored.

  • It would be managed by an independent board and staffed by professionals.

  • It would provide a space to house Council’s comprehensive $2.5 million public arts collection - accumulated over many decades - for everyone to enjoy.


Cr Egan said long-term business and financial planning was important for the success of the gallery and the arts, and there were a range of strategies that could help offset operational costs.


Also out for community input is the revised Art Collection Policy which aims to protect Council’s extensive and valuable collection.


The art policies will be on display at Participate Nillumbik until 19 July.


The community will be able to talk to their submissions at a Council meeting on 13 August and it will be presented to Council for final adoption by on 27 August.


Participate -






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