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Backing Indigenous Arts

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Backing Indigenous Arts (BIA) is a Queensland Government initiative started in 2007 to build a stronger, more sustainable and ethical Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts industry in Queensland. BIA is the only state government initiative of its kind in the country.

BIA aims to develop a sustainable and ethical Indigenous arts industry in Queensland, create pathways for artists and showcase their work on the world stage.

BIA has established key programs working with Indigenous art centres, the establishment of the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair and the Cairns opening in 2009 of the Djumbunji Press KickArts Fine Art Printmaking.

BIA has five programs:


Ministerial statements

27 November 2013 - Cairns Indigenous Art Fair kicks-off art fair circuit. View statement (external site)

Tuesday, June 25 - Momentum grows for Queensland Indigenous Arts. View statement (external site)

Friday 10 May 2013 - Newman Government puts Indigenous Artists First. View statement (external site)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - Cairns Indigenous Art Fair an international hit. View statement (external site)

Thursday, August 16, 2012 - Indigenous art centres supported into the future. View statement (external site)

Monday, August 13, 2012 - Cairns to be hub for Indigenous Art. View statement (external site)

Thursday, April 12, 2012 - 2012 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair - Bigger and Better Than Ever. View statement (external site)

9 Dec 2011 – $480,000 funding boost to Indigenous Art Centres. View statement (external site)

28 August 2011 - CIAF to return in 2012 View statement (external site)

1 April 2011 Lighthouse Grants helping great projects shine. View statement (external site)

13 Oct 2010 FNQ Indigenous arts sector receives $145k funding boost. View statement (external site)

15 Dec 2009 Erub Erwer Meta Art Centre opens. View statement (external site)

13 Dec 2009 FNQ Indigenous arts sector receives $189 k funding boost. View statement (external site)

3 Dec 2009 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair returns in 2010. View statement (external site)

24 Aug 2009 - Thousands flock to Cairns Indigenous Art Fair. View statement (external site)

1 Feb 2009 - Boost for Queensland's Indigenous arts. View statement (external site)

29 Oct 2008 - Indigenous Print Centre a boost for Far North Queensland View Statement(external site)

5 May 2008 – Far North Queensland Indigenous artists set for success. View statement (external site)

3 October 2007 – details of funding for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts and culture of Far North Queensland. View statement (external site)

More information

  • See Arts Queensland's Indigenous Strategy for further information about Indigenous initiatives.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships (external site) - The Department of Communities plays a key role in providing leadership and coordinating activities across state government to ensure Indigenous Queenslanders are well represented and effectively served.
  • Lighthouse Grants - Schools, artists, training and art organisations can apply for Indigenous project funding under the Queensland Government's Lighthouse Grants.