Studio Coordinator, Papulankutja Artists

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About the community and art centre

Papulankutja Artists is an Aboriginal owned not-for-profit corporation operating in the Blackstone Community on the Ngaanyatjarra Lands in Western Australia. Papulankutja (Blackstone) community is approximately 900kms west of Alice Springs and 1575kms north-east of Perth. As Yarnangu custodians, the artists play a major role in maintaining culture, law, and storytelling practices which are still relevant across the Ngaanyatjarra Lands. Papulankutja artists are committed to achieving positive economic, social and cultural outcomes for Yarnangu.  The artists have participated in major collaborative exhibitions over the years including Songlines: Tracking The Seven Sisters for the National Gallery of Australia collection in Canberra and Ngurra which showed at South Australia Museum. Papulankutja participates annually in key industry events such as Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair, Revealed Exhibition for Emerging Aboriginal Artists, Desert Mob and Tarnanthi.  The paintings are available for sale through reputable galleries and directly from Papulankutja Artists website and all proceeds are returned to the artists and their organisation.  This is a unique opportunity for a professional who is passionate about the creation of opportunities for communities to grow and strengthen. An understanding of the importance of sharing culture in this role is important as you are expected to take artists out on country for artist’s camps.

About the role

Studio Coordinator

Reports to: Papulankutja Art Centre Manager

As Studio Coordinator, you will:

1. Work with the Manager to facilitate quality art production and coordinate bodies of work and individual works for consignment and exhibition.

2. Support the artistic and professional development of artists.

3. Work closely with Indigenous art workers, mentoring and training them in all aspects of the day-to-day requirements of the art centre and supporting their careers.

4. Coordinate art workers to ensure the studio is kept an organised, well-stocked, clean and safe space for artists to work in.

5. Deliver customer service and sales to visitors at the art centre, onsite and online, as well as coordinate the freight and packaging of artworks for exhibition, consignment, and online sales.

6. Ensure the supply and maintenance of art materials and ensure artists and art workers use materials to the highest professional standards.

7. Photograph art works to the highest possible standards and catalogue artworks using the art centres SAM database in conjunction with the art workers.

8. Update the artists stories and biographies on the SAM database and website as required and maintain accurate records of the art centres membership.

9. Provide administration support to the Manager with regards to the general business and day-to-day operation of the art centre as well as marketing and project management as instructed by the Manager.

10. Respect and encourage maintenance of Indigenous language culture and tradition.

11. Assist with events such as bush trips, onsite exhibitions and art fairs.

12. You may also be required to travel to meetings and events regionally and interstate supporting artists to attend industry events.

13. Provide artists with social support when required such as driving them to and from home or outstations if required.

14. Participate in professional development as required by the art centre.

Salary Package

1. Remuneration – The  salary   range  is between  $60k- 65k (dependent on experience) plus    superannuation as per current legislation. Salary sacrifice packaging is available (capped). 12 month contract (renewable – dependent on funds being secured)

2. Hours of work 37.5 hours per week. Usual hours will be Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm.

3. Travel Relocation costs are available for this position.

4. Accommodation Accommodation and utility bills will be discussed with you at the interview.

5. Annual Leave 6 weeks annual leave (based on completion of ordinary hours)

6. Time off in Lieu Where approved by the Art Centre Manager, you may take time off in lieu (TOIL), up to a maximum of 10 days.

7. Staff employed by the art centre are expected to abide by the relevant sections of the Indigenous Australian Art Commercial Code of Conduct.  By-laws apply to all residents and visitors to Papulankutja (Blackstone) and any breach of bylaws regarding the use of alcohol or other substances is likely to lead to summary dismissal.

Selection Criteria – Please respond directly to each of the selection criteria (2 pages maximum);


1. Tertiary qualifications and/or work experience in an Arts or related industry

2. Demonstrated understanding of the Australian Aboriginal art industry as well as an understanding of contemporary art and the broader visual arts industry

3. Highly developed aesthetic sense and ability to critically assess art

4. Experience in exhibition co-ordination

5. Experience working with or mentoring Indigenous groups or individuals

6. Experience working with colour, mixing colour and a sound knowledge of colour theory

7. Ability to take quality photographs with a digital SLR

8. Capacity to live/work in a remote location

9. Ability to multi-task along with a keen eye for detail

10. Ability to work in what can be a high-pressure and demanding environment

11. Ability to work cooperatively with management in a supporting role

12. Current driver’s license and ability to drive a manual 4WD or a willingness to learn


13. Experience using online databases and e-commerce websites such as Webflow

14. Adobe Creative Suite skills will be highly regarded especially InDesign and Photoshop

15. Social media and online marketing skills

Applicants that do not address each of the selection criteria will not be considered for an interview.

How to apply

Applications must reach the Desart office by 5pm Central Standard Time Friday 10th June 2022. The acceptance of late applications will be at the discretion of the Chief Executive Officer of Desart.

Desart is the not-for-profit peak industry body for 36 Central Australian Aboriginal Art & Craft Centres and the Papulankutja Artists Board of Directors has engaged Desart to assist them in the recruitment of their new Art Centre Manager and Studio Coordinator.

For more information regarding this position or the recruitment process please contact Angie Stahl, General Manager on 08 8953 4736 or 0438 490 974.

Email Subject: Confidential – Attention: Studio Coordinator, Papulankutja  Mail Attention: General Manager Desart Inc PO Box 9219,  Alice Springs, NT 0871

Preparing your application

Selection of candidates involves a written application, an interview and reference checks. The successful applicant will also need to apply for a national (Federal) police clearance certificate. Your application should comprise of the following documents and information;

– Covering Letter – A summary of your background and suitability for the position should be addressed in the covering letter (1 page maximum using a letter template)

– Resume – (2 pages maximum including Referees)

– A summary of your employment history starting with the most recent. Please include dates, name of employer, position title and a brief description of your role

– Any training courses you have done in the last two to three years including first aid

– Any activities outside of work which are relevant to the position you are applying for   and;

– Provide names, contact details, description of the working relationship with each referee.

Preparing for the interview

All interview questions will be work related – that is they will relate to the selection criteria for the position you have applied for. The same questions will be asked for every interviewee so please read the position description and selection criteria in preparation for your interview.

Click on the link to access the Desart Art Centre Guidebook and other industry publications. Successful Candidates Police Clearance: You will be required to provide a National Police Clearance Certificate before commencing employment. Expenses of obtaining this clearance will be your responsibility.

Probationary Period: A probationary period of 3 months will need to be completed. A performance review will be held at the end of the probationary period and continuing employment confirmed subject to satisfactory performance.  Should you not perform your duties for which you have been employed to the satisfaction of the Papulankutja Artists Board of Directors, this corporation may at its discretion extend the period for a further three months or terminate this contract of employment by giving you relevant written notice or paying you in lieu of the notice period.

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