Room to Create Studios at Collingwood Yards launched

Friday 11 December 2020

Artist  Michelle Mantsio showing guest her work in studio space
Room to Create studio at Collingwood Yards. Image: Theresa Harrison

The Mayor, Cr Gabrielle de Vietri officially launched Council’s new affordable creative studios on 9 December after six years of fundraising and planning.

Securing affordable spaces to work and live for creative people is a constant challenge for gentrifying cities across the world. Almost 10 years ago the Yarra City Council started thinking about how to help keep artists and arts organisations in the city as land prices started to grow and more and more warehouse type spaces were being converted to residential mixed developments.

An initiative called Room to Create was born in 2014 and a single purpose charitable fund was established with the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation to raise money to fund creative infrastructure, in perpetuity. After all, affordable creative spaces is always going to be a challenge.

The fund has now grown to $460,000 and in this pandemic year, a new purpose built studio within the Collingwood Yards has been launched.

These studios are offered to artists at 70% discount from commercial rents charged.

The Yarra Room to Create Studios at the Collingwood Yards is a Yarra City Council initiative co-funded by the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation.

Another significant partnership is with local real estate company Nelson Alexander. The Nelson Alexander Foundation have donated to the fund and Arch Staver, Director of Nelson Alexander has been a patron of the Council program.

Six inaugural artists will share the studios in the first year with a plan for annual changeovers to give the opportunities to more artists. The six artists are:

  • Ayman Kaake
  • Guy Grabowsky
  • Hayley Van Ree
  • Josephine Mead
  • Michelle Mantsio
  • Scotty So

Read their profiles here


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