First Nations Arts Awards 2020 – live broadcast

The recipients of the 2020 First Nations Arts Awards will be revealed tonight, live online.

This special event will be jointly hosted by Wesley Enoch AM, Chair of the Australia Council’s First Nations Arts Strategy Panel (hosting from the lands of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation) and Lee-Ann Tjunypa Buckskin, Deputy Chair, Australia Council for the Arts (hosting from the lands of the Kaurna people). It will include a yidaki fanfare and a performance by the Stiff Gins (Yuwaalaraay, Wiradjuri and Yorta Yorta Nations) live from the Sydney Opera House.

Uncle Jack Charles. Photograph: Dale Lynch

Formerly called the National Indigenous Arts Awards, these significant awards recognise and celebrate the outstanding creativity and lifetime achievements of Australia’s First Nations artists. The awards are held each year on 27 May to mark the anniversary of the 1967 referendum.

‘This is a powerful moment for us to celebrate First Nations artists, at a time when physical distancing means many of us are feeling more disconnected than ever, and to connect through creativity,’ said Lydia Miller, the Australia Council’s Executive Director Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts.

‘Everyone is invited! This is an opportunity for everyone to connect in the digital world- both here in Australia – and all over the world, to come together as one and join in this celebration of First Nations arts and culture.’

Attendees can download the event app to join the conversation or sit back and enjoy the event online. The First Nations Arts Awards 2020 opening event will run from 6-7pm (AEST) with entry open from 5.45pm.

The 2020 awards will recognise outstanding First Nations artists within the following categories: the recipients of the prestigious Red Ochre Awards for Lifetime Achievement, which last year went to Aunty Lola Greeno and Uncle Jack Charles; the Dreaming Award for an emerging artist; and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Fellowship for mid-career artists. The ceremony also celebrates the many First Nations artists who have received other Australia Council awards in the last year.

The award ceremony will also be screened on NITV on Sunday 31 May at 6.30pm (AEST), and available on SBSOnDemand.