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Wednesday, 15 May 2013
Page: 3260

Mrs ELLIOT (Richmond) (13:54): I was very privileged on 11 April to attend and participate in the sod turning for the Margaret Olley Art Centre at the Tweed River Art Gallery at Murwillumbah. The federal Labor government provided $1 million for this project to ensure that Margaret Olley's legacy lives on.

The new centre honours the expressed wish of the late, great Australian artist, Margaret Olley, to re-create her studio and elements of her former home in a purpose-built extension of the Tweed River Art Gallery. Our gallery is one of the country's leading regional galleries, holding works of significant value to the nation. The Margaret Olley centre will make it one of the most recognised regional institutions in Australia. We are, indeed, very proud of it.

The federal government's $1 million in funding will be used specifically for the exhibition fit-out and recreation of Olley House and the design and construction of the building, including the artist-in-residence studio. It is an exciting opportunity and we are very proud at our regional gallery to have such a wonderful addition to it. I would like to acknowledge that this really is a great community victory in which all levels of government and the community worked together, with contributions of more than $1 million from Tweed Shire Council; $1 million, of course, from the Margaret Olley Trust; $200,000 from the state government; $600,000 from the gallery foundation; and $80,000 from the Friends of the Art Gallery. It was a remarkable achievement by all those elements within our community. Can I also acknowledge the wonderful director of our art gallery, Susi Muddiman. She is a fantastic asset and has worked very hard with everyone to secure this great funding for the Margaret Olley centre.