The Shoalhaven holds a rich history of culture, inspiration and artistic endeavour – from the traditional custodians of the Shoalhaven, the people of the Yuin Nation, to the legacy of artists who have been inspired by the unique beauty of the region.
Today the City is generously catered for in art places including the Shoalhaven City Arts Centre, Entertainment Centre, the School of Arts, Civic Centres, the Lady Denman Heritage Complex, and a range of vibrant smaller community museums and galleries.
Council strives to create opportunities in which people can express themselves, exchange ideas and work together to build a strong arts and heritage culture for the city and a greater understanding of our sense of self and place.
View our smART Spaces Arts and Cultural Heritage Strategy 2010-2014 (990kb. PDF)
Shoalhaven Arts Centre
The Shoalhaven City Arts Centre is a hub of vibrant and creative arts activities located in Nowra, NSW. Its facilities include four exhibition galleries, a gallery shop and a meeting room.
Exhibitions feature works from National and Regional collections, the Shoalhaven Regional Gallery and the Shoalhaven City Art Collections, specifically curated shows and exhibitions by Shoalhaven artists and community and are changed regularly – typically every four weeks in the Grey, Access and Foyer Galleries and in the Main Gallery every six weeks. For upcoming exhibitions, view the latest gallery Exhibition Brochure via the Arts Centre
website (new window).
Gallery and City Art Collections
The Shoalhaven Regional Gallery and Shoalhaven City Art Collections have grown over the past 40 years into substantial regional collections containing excellent examples of Australian art by Arthur Boyd, William Robinson, Max Dupain, David Voigt, Dennis Adams and a large collection of late 1800s watercolours and photographs by Samuel Elyard. The Collections have been developed to enhance, enrich and educate as well as stimulate awareness and appreciation of visual arts practice in contemporary Australia and the Shoalhaven.
Information for artists wishing to exhibit
Artists, arts organisations and community cultural groups are invited annually to submit an expression of interest to present exhibitions of arts, sculpture, installation work, photography, 3D works, pottery and ceramics, cultural heritage, fabric and textile art, video/multimedia film and community cultural projects at the Shoalhaven City Arts Centre. Expression of Interest to Exhibit kits are available each year from 1 June and applications close end of July - to exhibit in the following calendar year.
The Expressions of Interest application form is available for download. (PDF. 540kb)
Arts @ the Annex
'Arts @ the Annex' commenced in 2012 with visual art workshops (beginner, intermediate and advanced) which directly respond to the creative needs of youth and adults within the local community. Sessions are designed to provide an alternative site for learning and to support the development of visual art skills. for production of culture and objects. Subjects covered are diverse and include studio technique, material, colour theory, narrative and concept development.
'Arts @ the Annex' is a collaborative project between the Shoalhaven City Arts Centre and specialists from creative, education and community sectors. To register interest for either youth or adult courses; a program schedule; to hire a space for your art group or other information, please email email@example.com with 'Arts @ the Annex' in the subject line.
If you would like to be a volunteer and become active in the arts in our City, there are many tasks and activities in which you can be involved. These include gallery sitter, guide, assisting in hanging exhibitions, newsletter mail-outs and reception duties. Become an Art Centre Volunteer
application form (PDF 50kb), or read more about volunteering
opportunities with an online form to register your interest.
A range of facilities are provided by the Council to support creative activities in the region including the Shoalhaven City Arts Centre meeting room and the Nowra School of Arts and Annex.
The Shoalhaven City Arts Centre offers a range of spaces for hire. As well as the meeting room
there is an internal timber-decked courtyard and the Gallery itself - available for low key events up to 100 people.
The heritage listed Nowra School of Arts
offers the hirer a range of flexible spaces to suit a wide range of activities. The main building (hall) is a charming environment - providing a perfect location to hold a small stage production, wedding reception or expo-style event. The adjacent Annex
is another venue suitable for hire by dance or community groups at a slightly cheaper rate. These venues offer reduced hire fees for not-for-profit organisations and are available for a wide variety of activities.
Shoalhaven Artisan Market
Shoalhaven City Arts Centre commenced its new Shoalhaven Artisan Market in 2012 with great success. This launch pad for budding entrepreneurs and quality local artisans is held on the second Saturday of each month on the forecourt of the Arts Centre at 12 Berry St, Nowra. This is a unique opportunity for local designers, artists and craftspeople to direct sell to the public and showcase their original works on the grounds of the Regional Gallery. If you are a budding designer, have some creative flair or just live locally and would like to have a stall, please contact us on (02) 4429 5444 to register your interest. Alternatively send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with 'Shoalhaven Artisan Market Ref 45873E' in the subject line. After the market date of 13 April 2013, we will be postponing the markets over Autumn and Winter but hope to re-launch in September with a Spring Arts Bazaar.
Shoalhaven Mental Health Fellowship Open Community Art Competition 2013
This is an open art competition to help raise the awareness of mental illness and health and promote psychological, personal or mental health recovery in the Shoalhaven region. This year's theme is 'Paths to Fulfilment'. You do not need to have a mental illness to enter. Entry kits are available from The Junction (54 Junction St, Nowra) or the Shoalhaven City Arts Centre. Entries close with delivery of artwork to the Arts Centre on Wednesday, 22 May 2013 only.