Don Punch, David Templeman hold 'Arts, Culture and Creative Industries Forum'

Creative minds: Stirling Street Arts Centre manager Rebecca Corps, SSAC chairperson Carlene Williams, Culture and the Arts Minister David Templeman, and Bunbury MLA Don Punch. Photo: Thomas Munday.
Creative minds: Stirling Street Arts Centre manager Rebecca Corps, SSAC chairperson Carlene Williams, Culture and the Arts Minister David Templeman, and Bunbury MLA Don Punch. Photo: Thomas Munday.

The state government is committed to protecting and expanding the region's arts and entertainment sector, according to Bunbury MLA Don Punch.

Mr Punch, Culture and the Arts Minister David Templeman, and creatives from around the South-West gathered at the Stirling Street Arts Centre on January 31.

As part of the 'Arts, Culture and Creative Industries Forum', the group discussed the importance of retaining local arts and culture training and education opportunities.

They also talked about career pathways for local artists, the need for cultural tourism opportunities, the contribution of public art, and the Percent for Art Scheme.

"The South-West is a hub for creative industries in the state. The SSAC, the Bunbury Entertainment Centre, and the Bunbury Regional Art Galleries play such a fantastic role in creating social cohesion, improving the well-being of the community, and increasing liveability in the region," Mr Templeman said.

"Key pieces of cultural infrastructure - like the SSAC, BREC, and BRAG - provide for a range of activities at a community and professional level."

Mr Punch said the forum provided another chance for government representatives to interact with the Bunbury community.

"It [the arts and entertainment sector] is pretty significant to the fabric of Bunbury," he said.

"People relate to creative works in a variety of different ways...they inspire and embolden people.

"The minister is really keen to encourage people to network, promote what the sector does, and engage with their local governments."

Mr Punch and Mr Templeman also expressed their profound support for the SSAC's re-development projects.

"The redevelopment of the SSAC will provide much needed space for the administration and operations of the centre, and give the groups and local artists a new purpose-built space to hold workshops and exhibit their work," Mr Templeman said.

"The redevelopment is also very visible to the public, which will increase visitation."

SSAC chairperson Carlene Williams and manager Rebecca Corps thanked the Bunbury MLA and the minister for their efforts.

"The centre provides an outlet for people to socialise and to express themselves artistically," Ms Williams said.

"It feels great to see Mr Punch and the minister visit the centre and meet local artists."

What do you think could be done to support Bunbury's arts and entertainment sector? Email editor@bunburymail.com.au to have your say.