Abaf Awards National Winners Announced

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22nd October 2010, 09:00am - Views: 1096

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The partnership between property developer The GPT Group and Renew Newcastle, a not-for-profit

group that connects artists and creative groups with vacant buildings, has won the Partnership of the

Year Award at the 2010 AbaF Awards, presented at Randwick Racecourse, Sydney on 21 October.

Senator Kate Lundy, representing the Minister for the Arts, presented the award.

Renew Newcastle and The GPT Group won the night’s biggest award, the Partnership of

the Year. They also won the Toyota Community Award. Renew Newcastle was set up in 2008

to broker creative and artistic uses for vacant buildings. Property developers the GPT Group

came on board as the first partner. Together they are providing spaces for artists and creative

enterprises, and reviving the centre of Newcastle.

Edmund Capon AM OBE, director and chief curator of the Art Gallery of New South Wales

since 1978, won the Dame Elisabeth Murdoch Arts Business Leadership Award. Under his

leadership the gallery has become a vibrant world-class museum and one of the country’s

most energetic cultural institutions.

Simon and Catriona Mordant won the Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Leadership Award. For

more than 20 years they have been active arts philanthropists. Simon Mordant is chairman of

the Museum of Contemporary Art’s MCA Foundation. He and Catriona have been leaders of

the MCA’s redevelopment campaign, including a donation of $15 million. They support many

organisations that enable young people to benefit from the arts, such as Beyond Empathy

and Mission Australia’s Creative Youth Initiative. 

Rick Allert AO won the Richard Pratt Business Arts Leadership Award. Rick Allert AO was a

founding board member and a founding councillor of AbaF in 2000.  For more than ten years

he has devoted his considerable profile and commitment to increasing private support for

Australia’s cultural life.

AbaF Partnering Award: Queensland Art Gallery and Santos

This decade-long partnership has culminated in the 2009 announcement of a five-year

agreement worth $1.5 million, the gallery’s largest ever corporate sponsorship. The Sixth Asia

Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art drew more than half a million visitors. Both partners are

keen to engage more with the Asia-Pacific region, making this partnership a perfect alignment

of energy and interests. 


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AbaF SME Award: Australian Festival of Voices and Green Team Australia 

and Envelope Group (Tasmania)

Green Team Australia and Envelope Group applied their expertise in marketing, branding and

community engagement to raise the profile of the national choral event, the Festival of Voices.

In 2009 the rebranded festival increased registrations by 62 per cent, and returned almost $1

million to the Tasmanian economy over four days.

Arts and Health Foundation Award: South East Arts Region (SEAR) and Southern

General Practice Network (NSW)

The South East Arts Region connected a professional photographer and film-maker with a

group of parenting teenagers in Cooma and produced a short film about their lives focussing

on positive health messages. 

City of Sydney Encouragement Award: 

Queen Street Studio and Frasers Property Australia (NSW)

Frasers Property and Queen Street Studios have activated a space in Chippendale which

would otherwise lie empty. Frasers also provides financial support to run the space. The

partnership provides free studio space and residencies for visual and performing artists. It is a

popular venue for events and has quickly become a lively centre for independent arts


Bytecraft Entertainment Commitment Award: FORM & BHP Billiton Iron Ore (WA)

For seven years, FORM and MHP Billiton Iron Ore have delivered creative community

development throughout the remote Pilbara region. The projects improve quality of life for

Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, through new infrastructure, community arts

activities, business and professional development. Projects are long term and will continue for

the foreseeable future.

AbaF Giving Award: Polyglot Theatre (VIC)

Polyglot Theatre established a donations program in 2009 in response to a funding cut. In one

year, donations leapt from 0.1 per cent of turnover to almost 10 per cent, helping the company

to post the largest surplus in its history. The leap in donations enables the company to grow

with confidence. 


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Woodside Better Business Award: The Substation – Hobsons Bay Community Arts

Centre and Darren Williams, Bayview Glass (VIC)

The Substation in Newport, in Melbourne’s west was derelict when glazier Darren Williams

decided to do something about it. With a dream of creating a community arts centre, Williams

applied his glazing, construction and project management skills to a lengthy restoration

project. His years of voluntary leadership have paid off, with the Substation converted into a

community asset that is home to many arts and cultural activities. 

Australia Council Young and Emerging Artists Award: 

Black Swan State Theatre Company & RAC Group (WA)

RAC’s major partnership with Black Swan supports the Hotbed Ensemble, made up of young

and recently graduated actors, designers and stage managers. The partnership pays the

wages of the ensemble, which attracts young, urban audiences and is a vital part of Perth’s

theatre calendar.  RAC became principal sponsor in 2008, ensuring that the ensemble could

continue, retaining the talents of these young theatre makers in Western Australia.

QantasLink Regional Award: John Glover Society and Federal Group Tasmania

The Glover Prize is Australia’s richest annual landscape art prize, awarded for the best new

painting of the Tasmanian landscape. Federal’s cash and in-kind support underwrites the

prize, an exhibition, a dinner, concert and associated events in Evandale. Federal exhibits the

winning paintings in its hotels and links its brand with a high-quality cultural event. 

Visy Arts and Environment Award: Windmill Theatre and SA Water

Windmill Theatre and SA Water joined forces to create quality live theatre that promotes

water-wise messages to a young audience. The partnership helps SA Water reach young

people and families, while Windmill receives support to increase its audiences and create new


Media contact: Nick Gadd  0425 862 119 



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