Kempsey Laneway project nominated for street art award

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Kempsey Shire Council

Artworks in Kempsey created to attract visitors and dazzle residents has been named as one of the best public art experiences in the nation.

‘Savages Lane on the Macleay Valley Coast’ with contributions from numerous artists including Pat Indo, Jason Ridgeway and Deb Broughton has been shortlisted for the 2023 Australian Street Art Awards’ Best Street Art Laneway gong.

The Australian Street Art Awards, established in 2018, recognise destinations like Kempsey that are using public art in its many forms to entertain visitors and engage their community.

“The Awards provide a platform where trailblazing destinations – cities, regional towns and precincts – can be recognised for their contribution to both the world of street art and art tourism,” said Awards Director Liz Rivers.

“Each of the communities acknowledged through these Awards have made their mark as a must-see destination for art lovers.”

The Australian Street Art Awards was the tourism industry’s first, and remains the largest, recognition program for excellence and innovation in art tourism.

“Being shortlisted in these Awards further cements the reputation of the Macleay Valley Coast as an aspirational destination for everyone who loves visually stunning experiences,” Ms Rivers said.

With rigorous judging of submissions by tourism leaders now complete, plus second-tier auditing and due diligence in progress, this finalist success has the credence of the tourism sector.

The 2023 Awards incorporated 12 categories, including a new one: Best Community Art for any form of permanent artwork that was worked upon by members of the wider community not typically engaged in public art.

Ms Liz said, “All finalists will also have the chance of being named as the ‘Best Street Art Experience’ in their state for the first time in these 2023 Awards”.

National Gold, Silver and Bronze winners in all categories plus each state champion will be announced at a gala dinner celebration on Friday 8 March as part of the Art of Attraction Tourism Summit on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.

With the highest number of entries ever received, judges commented that the 2023 entries were also of a very high calibre, demonstrating the nominee’s determination to improve their community through the adoption of creative projects.

Judges’ feedback to nominees will include ways to finesse their offering and attract more visitors through their public art.

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