Footscray Community Arts

Since 2013, we have been a partner of the Footscray Community Arts – an organisation that shares our passion for education, community and creativity in Melbourne’s west.  

The growth of the partnership now provides a range of opportunities for Victoria University (VU) students to undertake a research project, or intern or complete a work placement in:

The history and connection between our two organisations runs long and deep. Footscray Community Arts was founded on a VU campus, then called the Footscray Institute of Technology, in 1974. And when Footscray Community Arts moved to their current home by the Maribyrnong River, students in the engineering faculty helped pave the amphitheatre.

A group of young adults in casual clothes watch a show from a grassy bank

About Footscray Community Arts

Footscray Community Arts is a 50-year strong independent arts precinct dedicated to sharing stories. Their vision is that all communities are valued as makers of culture. 

Each year, Footscray Community Arts supports, develops and presents contemporary arts in collaboration with the communities they centre and prioritise – First Nations, culturally and linguistically diverse, LGBTIQA+ and d/Deaf and disabled artists – to connect them with an engaged audience. In 2024, Footscray Community Arts celebrates 50 years of art, community and culture.

Our collaboration

Since 2013, Footscray Community Arts and VU have engaged with each other in a variety of ways to support the delivery of arts and community-based programs and enhance student life at VU:

  • Student placements across Footscray Community Arts programs. For example, Diploma of Community Service students complete work-integrated learning in Footscray Community Arts’ flagship NDIS program, ArtLife Studio.
  • Performance opportunities for VU student musicians at Footscray Community Art events.
  • Footscray Community Arts participation in VU orientation festivities to welcome students to campus with engaging creative workshops, dance classes and art activities.
  • Footscray Community Arts Indigenous Advisory Group participation by Karen Jackson, Executive Director of the VU Moondani Balluk Indigenous Academic Unit.
  • Multiple collaborations between local artists and VU students in exhibitions at Footscray Community Arts, including the VU Hive Lab working across the BOLDER exhibition and the co-presented BRIGHT exhibition.
  • Ongoing collaboration with the Na Djinang Circus for the production, In Place. In this, Iramoo Grassland Centre Nursery at VU provided 100 local community participants with native plant species and invited them to care for the plants for a year. The plants will be brought back to Footscray Community Arts in October as part of the In Place event at the 2024 Fringe Festival and used as part of the set. After this they will become part of the Footscray Community Arts’ native garden.

Sustainable development

This partnership reflects our commitment to the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.