Arts OutWest’s multi-talented, many-hatted Dr Kate Smith received a Create NSW Creative Development Fellowship in 2018. Covid got in the way of her international research plans so now in winter 2022 she’s diving back into it.
Kate’s fellowship was awarded for “…undertaking a broad range of professional development including being mentored and participating in classes and training opportunities in Australia and overseas.”
Arts OutWest auspiced Kate’s fellowship. More about the Create NSW fellowships here.
Whilst Kate is on extended leave (until September 2022) to complete the fellowship, we did get a moment to drag her aside to quiz her more on the research and project.
What are you using your fellowship for?
It has been an incredible opportunity to refocus and transition into new spaces creatively, and from a producing point of view; grant writing; upskilling in website management and editing/recording for podcasting. It has involved national and international travel to arts festivals and writing workshops, including Dark Mofo and Generative writing with Jenny Kemp
I have curated a suite of experiences that traverse the development of two major new creative works in live and digital performance, and a podcast, as well as presenting papers and panel talks, keynotes etc.
The program has a included creative mentorships with Dublin based cultural agency, The Trailblazery. As a result of this mentorship I am developing a new international cross-disciplinary collaboration work with Dublin based Director Annie Ryan of The Corn Exchange and Fife Scotland based visual artist Kirsty Whiten.
An ongoing mentorship with CreativePlusBusiness coach Monica Davidson helped guide me through the process of building a website and launching my own creative mentorship programme.
The recording and forthcoming launch of my podcast “Women on The Edge’ saw me attend Rachel Corbett’s podcasting course , working with an editor and upskilling.
Panel and keynote presentations for Vivid Sydney ( 2022) , State of The Arts Sector Picnic (2020) for Theatre Network NSW; and an academic paper presentation at the Australasian Drama Association Conference in Launceston (2019).
You received the fellowship in 2018, other than the obvious delays because of the pandemic, has anything changed in what you’ve been exploring in the fellowship or how?
Th main thing that changed we the development of more localised approaches to working. I become deeply connected the landscape in a way I haven’t before and that led me to dream up a beautiful new community cultural development project – Fast Cars and Dirty Beats – which includes a series of events and long term engagement with various community groups and cross- disciplinary professional artists over a two year period exploring diverse narrative about Wahluu/Mt Panorama. We have worked with 12 professional artists, three schools, and continue to engage with community groups on other regional place this year including Kandos + Rylstone.
This project is about belonging, cultivating community and generating joy!
Where are you headed to overseas and what will you be doing?
I am going to Dublin, Galway and Craigrothie in Fife ( a regional area just outside Edinburgh) to run Masterclasses with Director Annie Ryan and artist Kirsty Whiten ( see above) , visit ancient Celtic sites and develop a new creative work. I will also work with Kathy Scott – Director of The Trailblazery. I am fostering networks with a view to return with new locally made works in 2023/2024.
What’s the real value of a fellowship like this?
The value is in the time taken to explore new avenues of working whilst forting your strengths. Mentorships are golden and my two mentors have helped me gather the golden threads of what I do best and channel them into new creative projects and clear ways to continue earning a living as a regional artist.
You’ve got a lot of things on the boil at the moment, what other creative projects are you working on?
Fast Cars and Dirty Beats performance – a brand spanking new hilarious play premiers in early February 2023.
Women on The Edge podcast to launch soon
Creative Mentorships now open.
#HAG – A digital odyssey in development.
Kate will be on leave from Arts OutWest until September 2022. For arts and health things during this time contact Christine McMillan or Steven Cavanagh. Details on our contacts page.
Pictured: Dr Kate Smith