Victorian Women’s Public Art Program

Regional Arts Victoria is proud to be working with the Victorian Government through the Community Support Fund to deliver the Victorian Government’s Victorian Women’s Public Art program.

The Victorian Women’s Public Art program (VWPA) will support the development of permanent public art to examine the significant and diverse contributions women have made to Victoria and to share those stories with the broader community.[1]

Through the program organisations were invited to apply for $50,000 to $200,000 (excl. GST) to support the commissioning or completion of permanent public art [2], such as statues, sculptures and installations. The successful organisations will be responsible for working with creative practitioners who are women to develop and realise the artworks.

Safe and Strong, the Victorian Government’s gender equality strategy, recognises that the equal representation of women in public spaces is vital to achieving its vision for gender equality. The VWPA program helps achieve this goal, by lifting the visibility of women’s contributions and achievements and placing them on the public record.

This program supports and works in parallel with the Victorian Honour Roll of Women, an annual program run by the Victorian Government to recognise women who have demonstrated remarkable leadership and excellence in their field or through their commitment to the community.

Successful applicants

Mildura Rural City Council
Yennega-Yettang/Come“See is a new public art concept that will provide a cultural experience for North West Victoria-Latji Latji, Ngintait, Nyeri Nyeri and Wergaia Country. MRCC will engage local artist Maree Clarke to lead this commission and develop a new public artwork, in consultation and collaboration with local women from all backgrounds, creating a work that speaks of women’s connection to country. The multi-media digital production will be exhibited/played, through projection onto the historic Powerhouse building, a new development in the heart of the Mildura Riverfront precinct.

Northern Grampians Shire Council
Remembering Stella Young
This project will deliver a statue of Stella Young in her hometown of Stawell to celebrate, commemorate and remember her. It will aim to continue her legacy to challenge and educate society and its perception of disability, and to strive for œa world where disability is not the exception, but the norm.

Golden Plains Shire Council
Vera: Linton War Surgeon
A bronze sculpture, by local sculptor Lucy McEachern, highlighting the contribution of Linton-born war surgeon and Director of Infant and Maternal Health, Dr Vera Scantlebury who, in an era of gender inequality went on to receive an OBE for her contribution. The sculpture will sit in the historic township of Linton. The sculpture will be sited in the memorial Avenue and will sit opposite – as in conversation with, an existing memorial to men who served in war.

Queen Victoria Women’s Centre Trust
Creative Resilience (working title)
Creative Resilience will recognise First Nations women: past, present, now known or unknown, in a creation process and outcome that will pay tribute to a heritage of continuous creativity and ingenuity in support of community and cultural survival. Created by “Ngardang Girri Kalat Mimini”, a Victorian First Nations Women and trans diverse art collective including Georgia MacGuire, Glenda Nicholls, Lorraine Brigdale, Janet Bromley and others, the work will be installed at the Queen Victoria Women’s Centre.

Baw Baw Shire Council
Three Women on Kurnai Country
A life-size bronze of three women, Regina Rose, Dorothy Hood, and Euphemia Mullet Tonkin, who were influential in the Kurnai nation, will be created in the town of Drouin. The triangular base of the work amalgamates the three women in a single, joined mass, anchored to country and to each other. Each of the three becomes individually expressive in full three-dimensioned portraiture, as each takes on objects of white culture to enable their children and communities to survive. This work can bring balance to the bronze of Lionel Rose in Warragul, telling First Nations stories first in Baw Baw Shire.

Victorian Trades Hall Council
Honouring Zelda D’Aprano
Victorian Trades Hall Council, alongside A Monument of One’s Own, will build a statue honouring activist and feminist Zelda D’Aprano and the decades of campaigners who have followed in her footsteps.

[1] Note: this program uses the term ˜women’ throughout. Applications were welcome from all women, including those who identify as trans and gender diverse.

[2] Note: For the purposes of this program, ˜permanent’ means that artwork is in situ for a minimum of 10 years. After such time, it may remain in place and continue to be maintained, or be decommissioned.