The first round of Public Grants Program recipients are listed.

12 April 2016

The following individuals, organisations and groups received total funding of $1.5 million through the first round of the Public Grants Program in 2015. All figures exclude GST.

Old Treasury Building, Trenches to Plough: Soldier Settler Stories ($39,789.90)

Old Treasury Building, one of Victoria's pre-eminent historic buildings, will host a new exhibition in 2015 called Trenches to Plough—Soldier Settler Stories. The exhibition will explore the now almost forgotten rural settlement scheme initiated for soldiers returning from overseas war service. The Victorian Government acquired farming land for repatriated servicemen with the objective of providing useful work for those who had returned home with few prospects of civilian employment. The project includes strong community engagement in its development and wide consultation throughout Victoria in exploring the stories, collections and memories of settlers' descendants.

McArdle Digital Media Arts, The ANZAC Centenary Imaginarium App ($20,000)

The Anzac Centenary Imaginarium is an innovative digital interpretation project between the RSL of WA and digital interpretation artist Justin McArdle. The project will bring to life the memories, hopes, thoughts and fears of a fictitious Anzac character in a new way and engage existing and new audiences with the Anzac legacy. The Augmented Reality App will be available on all mobile devices and will be free to download for all visitors to the WA State War Memorial. The Imaginarium will create a 3D animated Anzac character and will merge the traditional world of live performance with the virtual world of Augmented Reality to develop a new kind of memorial for the 21st Century.

Port Macquarie Hastings Council, Portraits of Memory [working title] ($50,000)

Portraits of Memory is a large scale outdoor projected exhibition that acknowledges the impact the Anzac spirit has within the community today. Stories and footage of community members holding objects of personal significance will be captured through large scale portraits, providing an exhibition of memory-pieces that connect us to the experiences of Australians at war. The project will produce two large-scale public film projection artworks for display on an exterior building wall in the Port Macquarie CBD before touring to smaller townships in the Port Macquarie Local Government area.

Australian National Maritime Museum, AE1 commemorative art program 'The Ocean Bed their Tomb': A floating day and night artwork in stainless steel, light and reflection ($100,000)

This commemorative water-based art installation will feature in a broader program to recognise the naval incident involving the disappearance of Australia's submarine AE1 off Papua New Guinea in the Anzac narrative. This striking artwork, an abstract play of light and structure, will inspire viewers to pause and reflect on this important naval engagement early in World War I and the mysterious fate of the submarine and its crew. The project will involve creative process artist workshops, resource materials, a national creative writing competition and an interactive virtual exhibition of voices, imagery and reflections.

Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, The Suspense is Awful: Tasmanians at Home and War, 1914–18 ($99,550)

The Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery will host an exhibition to commemorate Tasmanians' service in World War I and the impact war had on Tasmanian society. Drawing from multi-disciplinary collections the exhibition will highlight previously untold stories featuring Tasmanian servicemen, including Aboriginal volunteers, and men and women who provided medical support on the battlefront. The exhibition will address a range of themes including grief, remembrance, returning home, post-war politics and social upheaval, and the changing understanding of the Anzac legacy across the century.

Tasmanian Theatre Company Inc, The Tree Widows ($50,000)

The Tree Widows is an interactive performance of contemporary theatre presented as either a site specific engagement or in-theatre presentation, inspired by the stories of loved ones honoured in the avenue of remembrance trees in Hobart's Queen's Domain Park. Written by critically acclaimed Australian playwright Alana Valentine, the premiere season of this poignant and compelling new work will be produced by the Tasmanian Theatre Company to coincide with the Ten Days Festival 2015.

Sugarrush Music, The Soldier's Wife ($40,000)

In 2014, seven Queensland female songwriters spent time with a group of military wives, including women whose husbands served in World War II and widows of recent conflicts. Personal stories of sacrifice by these women and their husbands were documented through song and then performed in a one off special performance during Anzac week in 2014. This project seeks to tour the performance both regionally and nationally in 2015 to engage a wider audience and document stories from other service wives across the country. The project will also include interstate artists working with war widows in their own communities.

Canberra Youth Theatre, The Jam Tin ($50,000)

The Jam Tin is an important new theatre work developed by Canberra Youth Theatre and Long Cloud Youth Theatre, New Zealand. It explores the place of young people within the Anzac legacy in both Australia and New Zealand, and the evolution of our relationship over the century. Bringing artists together across the Tasman, this production presents the youth perspective, reinvigorating the contemporary relevance of the Anzac spirit and re-connecting the New Zealand voice to Australia's Anzac narrative.

State Theatre Company of South Australia, The Red Cross Letters ($67,000)

The Red Cross Letters is a performance work based on letters held by the Australian Red Cross and recently transferred to the State Library, South Australia. Material from the letters seeking news of loved ones on the front during World War I will be arranged into a dramatic work which will be staged by the State Theatre Company in Adelaide and toured to regional South Australia with Country Arts SA. The correspondence includes accounts from military commanders, soldiers, medical staff and mates who fought alongside the lost or wounded. This is a unique interpretation of compelling material through theatre and will create a perfect centre-piece for communities as part of their Anzac commemorations.

Liverpool City Council, Liverpool World War 1 Soldiers ($31,087)

Liverpool City Council will develop and launch a publication to shine a spotlight on the stories and biographies of soldiers from the Liverpool region—showing how ordinary citizens contributed to such a significant historical event. The publication will add a grass roots dimension to the Anzac story and highlight its importance to all levels of civic life, from the national to the personal.

Northern Rivers Writers' Centre, We are the future: Northern Rivers' Memory of War—Stories of then told by people of now ($47,000)

Northern Rivers Writers' Centre will connect the Northern Rivers' youth community with the region's history by sharing the story of how war shaped the town and its people and how a war from 100 years ago still affects the Northern Rivers area today. Through storytelling, the Northern Rivers Writers' Centre will enlighten the local community about the Anzac legacy, particularly that of women and Indigenous people, and connect youth and senior communities. The program will help local students research and tell stories of how World War I impacted Northern Rivers residents through the ages.

District Council of Mt Barker, Our Hills Anzac Story ($45,500)

Our Hills Anzac Story will collect local stories on how service affected the local community through voice recording, filming, images and still photos to be presented in a series of murals about the local impacts of World War I. The vision is to create an inclusive community that has strong ties to its past and future, embracing the role service men and women have played in shaping our community. The stories will be shared in a school setting with RSL members and students, and a qualified artist will interpret the stories and collate them into a timeline of murals that will be displayed in Mount Barker.

Topology Inc, Anzac Up Close: Chronicles of a legend that shaped a nation ($50,000)

Anzac Up Close: Chronicles of a Legend that Shaped a Nation uses music as way to commemorate the significance the Anzac legacy has had in shaping our nation's identity. During 2015–2017, Topology will create new work using oral history recordings from the National Library of Australia, visit metropolitan and regional centres in every state, collaboratively create song-cycles with young people and local communities, curate and perform accessible community concert events, collaborate with a well-known war historian and film maker, and commemorate the end of World War I in 2018 with a national tour featuring the new work created throughout 2015–2017.

Sean Foran, Memory and Emotion: Contemporary Music exploring ANZAC letters ($21,000)

Acclaimed Australian musicians Sean Foran, Rafael Karlen and Kristin Berardi will create a series of new musical works for piano, saxophone and voice, with lyrics drawn from Anzac letters. The works explore themes of hope, fear, separation, loss and love, and conditions of war. The music draws on sounds from jazz and folk music and is intensely intimate and moving. This new music will be recorded and released nationally with public performances in Brisbane, Cairns, Bangalow, Sydney and Melbourne.

Huon Valley Theatre Inc., Keep the Home Fires Burning ($6,400)

Keep the Home Fires Burning is a musical theatre piece that portrays the experience of World War I from the perspective of those left at home in Australia. A series of vignettes on stage will portray the lives of diverse groups of Australians during war time against a backdrop of events overseas. With humour and pathos, this production examines the impact of the first Anzac experience, from the initial excitement of 'the great adventure' to the ultimate sobering consequences of war. The original play, written by a local author, is accompanied by songs from the era and staged by Huon Valley Theatre in Southern Tasmania.

Southern Edge Arts Inc, The Dreaming Hill ($15,000)

Southern Edge Arts together with the WA Youth Theatre Company will undertake the creative development and performance of an original theatrical production, The Dreaming Hill, written by leading WA Playwright, Hellie Turner. The Dreaming Hill will be performed outdoors at the WA Museum in Albany and in Perth by twenty young people aged 15 to 25. The Dreaming Hill will honour the enduring human spirit of Australian service men and women, presenting intimate stories that highlight the experiences of young 11th Battalion Soldiers and the nurses stationed on Lemnos Island, Greece.

Robert O'Hara Burke Memorial Museum, Twenty WWI Nurses of the Indigo Shire [working title] ($7,584)

The Burke Museum will mount an exhibition to commemorate, remember and create a permanent record of twenty nurses born and raised in the Indigo Shire who served in the World War I. The exhibition will draw on a research project that traces and documents the service and lives of these women. This research project established relationships with many relatives of the nurses, uncovering a rich resource of exhibition material in the form of diaries, records, stories, photographs and personal possessions. The exhibition will focus on the nurses' wartime experiences and the social conditions they faced on their return.

Berrima District Historical & Family History Society Inc., A Camera on Gallipoli. The photographs of Charles Ryan ($5,500)

This project will create a dedicated space within the Berrima District Museum to host A Camera on Gallipoli: the photographs of Charles Ryan exhibition. This exhibition will take us behind the stirring accounts of battle being reported at home to reveal the dry, forbidding landscape, tired troops in the trenches, squalid dug-outs and the horrendous task of burying the dead. The Museum will use this exhibition to promote the Anzac Legacy to residents of the Southern Highlands and visitors to the District.

Tantrum Youth Arts, Stories in our Steps: Warriors, Rest ($16,000)

The Tantrum Theatre Cooperative's space, formerly St Phillip's Church, was built in 1905 and is home to eight memorial plaques dotted around its internal walls. These plaques are dedicated to young men who did not return from World War I. As part of the Stories in our Steps: Warriors, Rest project, Tantrum will commission a leading contemporary dance theatre choreographer to create a new site-specific physical theatre work with young performers. The piece will commemorate and celebrate the extraordinary spirit of the young men and how their sacrifice shaped our nation. The piece will be performed for intimate audiences at the former St Phillip's Church and will be complemented by an exhibition of archival material from the Newcastle Regional Library, video projections and a walking map.

Auspicious Arts, As Told by the Boys Who Fed me Apples ($50,000)

As Told by the Boys Who Fed Me Apples is a new Australian two-man performance that recognises the history of Sandy, the only horse to return to Australia from World War I. The work will be co-created with actors and designers through a creative development phase and public reading and will premier in Big West Festival 2015. The performance commemorates Sandy's journey from his home in Victoria's north/eastern region to Europe to Maribyrnong, Victoria where he spent his last years. The symbiotic relationship between horse and trooper will inform the innovative physically-based narrative, scored with an original sound design.

The Griffyn Ensemble, The Antipodes Project Regional Tour ($35,374)

The Griffyn Ensemble will commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I by touring the Antipodes Project to regional Australia. The Antipodes Project is a 60 minute, live musical performance with multimedia projections that tells the story of World War I in Australia through events in rugby league between 1914 and 1918. The project's vision is to promote understanding of the Anzac legacy through a work of art that responds to the social history of 1914–18, creating a platform that brings arts and sporting communities together. This project aims to be relevant to Australians across NSW and QLD who in particular may not otherwise regularly access the arts.

Eurobodalla Shire Council, Eurobodalla: Our Anzac Legacy ($42,122.25)

The vision of Eurobodalla: Our Anzac Legacy is to bring to life the personal stories of local service of men and women who served in World War I in 12 short films. The film project component will be supported by a program of community activities and events designed to explore the Anzac experience from a personal and community level, including a community screening, an associated library public program of events and activities and community developed events and sub-projects, as well as provide an enduring local educational resource. The project will contribute to the larger Anzac story and engage a new generation.

Brown's Mart Theatre, Smoke Social: Darwin's Involvement in WWI ($100,000)

Smoke Social—Darwin's involvement in World War I is a play that explores Darwin's involvement in World War I. While people were unable to enlist in Darwin, 40 per cent of the town's population travelled interstate in order to sign up. At the time of their departure, the enlistees would be farewelled in what were called 'Smoke Socials'. This new play will re-create a 'Smoke Social' and tell the story of two young enlistees who are disturbed by visions of their frontline future. This play will provide audiences with an immersive experience of what it was like to be a World War I enlistee while exploring important themes and storylines such as sacrifice, nationalism and understandings of Country, Digger mateship, escape, heroism and the Aboriginal Lighthorsemen. The play will also explore how these themes continue to resonate in contemporary warscapes while the spirit of the Australian soldier lives on.

The Workshops Rail Museum, Travelling Exhibition: At Home/on the front: Railways in wartime 1914–18 ($98,350)

This project presents a compelling but little explored story of the role of railways in World War I. Using objects, photographs and audio-visual material, the project will recount individual stories of bravery and hardship—from troop trains and Australian Light Railway Operating Companies on the Western Front, to the home front railway workshops and recruitment trains that pulled into stations across Australia—to show the pivotal involvement of men and women on the railways during the conflict. The exhibition will show at the Workshops Rail Museum in 2015 before touring Australia.

Kate Neal, Semaphore ($40,000)

Semaphore is a 60 minute, mixed media work incorporating music, dance, light and theatre. Using the complex world of signalling in the pre-digital age of the World Wars, the performance will incorporate physical, visual and aural encoding systems such as semaphore, light coding, binary code, Morse code, and pennants signalling. The performance will be infused with archival recordings of naval signalmen telling stories about their experiences of coding, communication and mis-communication, providing humour and poignant narrative resulting in a highly arresting and compelling visual and sonic environment.

Queensland Ballet, Lest We Forget ($100,000)

Lest We Forget is a triple-bill of ballet works planned for Queensland Ballet's 2016 season to mark the centenary of World War I. The War-themed program will feature a work by Liam Scarlett (UK) (No Man's Land) and a new, uniquely Australian commission by Natalie Weir (Australia). Queensland Ballet's popular Dance for Parkinson's initiative will engage communities in metropolitan and regional Queensland through participatory debate and movement. An immersive Public Program and Schools Program will accompany performances, designed to engage the community (young and old) with interactive learning experiences that celebrate Australia's war-history.

Queensland Theatre Company, Brisbane ($68,867)

Following the highly successful Black Diggers production, which explored the Anzac legacy as it relates to Indigenous soldiers in World War I, the Queensland Theatre Company now plans to present a world premiere work of theatre that looks at that legacy in relation to World War II. This new play, Brisbane by Matthew Ryan, examines issues of Australian identity and military pride, set against the backdrop of the 'Battle of Brisbane' and the tensions that existed between Australian troops and American soldiers based in Brisbane in 1942.

Footscray Historical Society Inc, Memorials, mementoes and memories of war: A pictorial project ($24,000)

Footscray has a special place in war history, with a munitions industry based there for many years and war having been a major impetus for many residents to flee their countries of origin and eventually settle in Footscray. Footscray Historical Society will host an 'artist in residence' position shared by two photo media artists who will explore and interpret the collection, existing remnants of war history in and around Footscray and memories and mementoes of Footscray's people. The project will share the knowledge of war and its impact on the people and landscape of Footscray through two exhibitions of the artists' work each year.

University of Southern Queensland, The Sound and the Fury: An artistic and cultural commemoration of the military service and sacrifice of Old Boys of St Joseph's Nudgee College ($30,380)

This project consists of five distinct but interrelated arts and culture projects, with the three projects to be funded under the Anzac Centenary Arts and Culture Fund being an evening sound and light show using the heritage listed buildings of St Joseph's Nudgee College, four large-scale artistic dioramas (Gallipoli 1915, Amiens 1918, North Africa 1942, New Guinea 1942) and a museum exhibition display. The project commemorates the lasting legacy of the military service of Old Boys involved in numerous conflicts from the Boer War through to Afghanistan and Iraq. The college buildings will be used as a surface for a stunning sound and light show during which the school will reveal the stories of the boys who left it to fight.

National Gallery of Victoria, Follow the Flag: Australian Artists at War 1914–1945 ($100,000)

Follow the Flag: Australian Artists at War 1914–1945 is an exhibition that will comprise 160 works drawn from the National Gallery of Victoria Collection, the Australian War Memorial and public and private collections around Australia. The exhibition will bring to life the diverse stories of those who served at war as well as the experiences of their families and communities at home. Works of art comprising paintings, works on paper, photographs and sculptures from some of Australia's most well-known artists such as Arthur Streeton, Russell Drysdale, Albert Tucker, Joy Hester, Frank Hurley and Max Dupain as well as soldier artists and unknown artists will enable visitors to reflect upon and commemorate this significant anniversary of Australia's involvement in World War I.

The Ian Potter Museum of Art, Archive and monument: remembering silent histories ($50,000)

The exhibition philosophically locates itself in two spheres: the archive and the monument. The archive, located in the first gallery, will address through the use of visual, written and audio objects the key issues of silent stories, including those of Indigenous service men and women, and fighters of all nationalities in multiple conflicts over the last century. It will also highlight other aspects of war along with the immeasurable loss of lives, drawing attention to the view of World War I as the war to end all wars. The second gallery will present a propositional monument: a sanctuary of contemplation in the exhibition. A major publication will be produced, with a number of essays that will investigate the key issues of the exhibition including the history of Indigenous service men and women, Australia as sanctuary and the role of memory and commemoration.

Scenic Rim Regional Council, War Stories and Our Town ($45,000)

War Stories and Our Town is a year-long program exploring the impact of war on the communities of the Scenic Rim. It will include exhibitions, performances, community events, forums and workshops through a region wide community story sharing project. The project's focus is on exploring local Anzac and war history through a variety of community engagement processes that will give communities a stronger sense of identity and connection to place.