From 2016-2017 I was the Artistic Director of Red Hot Arts, based in Alice Springs in Australia’s Northern Territory.
Red Hot Arts Central Australia is a creative hub that fosters arts innovation, development, collaboration, and entrepreneurship in Alice Springs, providing advocacy, leadership, and capacity building. It’s flagship event is the annual Desert Festival.
The two-year project involved significant refocusing of the organisation and transitioning the iconic Desert Festival to an open program model that created a fleeting utopia, peering to some possible futures of the region.
The new Desert Festival model offered both exuberant public space events and more intimate, deep-diving experiences from local, NT, national and international artists. Highlights included The Mermaids’ Picnic: a family-friendly twilight event on the banks of the Todd River and The Desert Gardens: A multi-stage pop-up venue created from a completely transformed car park.
Other key actions during this period included:
- Reactivating Red Hot Art’s space in central Alice Springs,
- Developing a new promotional season ‘Alice Springtime’ to support the many independent dynamic events taking place from August-November,
- Dangerous Dinner: a food and discussion event in conjunction with the Festival of Dangerous Ideas and Alice Springs Library
- Twistmas – delivering a program into the Alice Springs Town Council’s annual Christmas festival, with a focus on new and engaging experiences for broader audiences.
- A new partnership with Rotary’s world-famous Henley on Todd
- Remote Area Ops, a professional development event for remote-based workers working across sectors.