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Cementa17 - Contemporary Arts Festival

Home > New South Wales > Art | Community Events | Exhibitions | Festivals | Free
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Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa
Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa

The much-loved Cementa festival returns this Autumn with another stellar program of contemporary arts, including performance, sound, cabaret, interactive and electronic arts, video, photography, installation and ceramics!

Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa
Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa

Held from 6th to 9th April 2017, Cementa presents the work of more than 60 artists at the vanguard of Australia's creative community and artist collectives - showcasing artists Tony Albert, Mervyn Bishop, Claire Healy & Sean Cordeiro, Teena McCarthy, Nicole Welch, Miriam Williamson & Brad Allen-Waters, John A Douglas, Paris Norton, Linda Brescia, The Mumps, PYT Fairfield, The Twilight Girls, Super Critical Mass, A Galaxy of Suns and a whole lot more. Even Artbank are bringing their roadshow to town!

MERVYN BISHOP Cowboy - (Kandos Elder Series 2017) Digital Print, 50 x 40 cm photograph by Mervyn Bishop, Courtesy of the Artist & Cementa
A portrait series of Kandos Elders by legendary photographer, Mervyn Bishop will be on display at Kandos Museum for Cementa17

The Cementa festival transforms inside and outside spaces, domestic, retail & historic dwellings into hubs of creative inspiration. It offers new ways for visitors to re-discover these town sites, contemplate Australian contemporary art and learn about a tiny town and its place in Central West NSW.

A GALAXY OF SUNS - (Michaela Gleave, Warren Armstrong & Amanda Cole) Performance from Dark Mofo 2016. Photograph: Michaela Gleave, Courtesy of the Artist & Cementa
A Galaxy of Suns is a choral performance and associated smartphone app. In a performance unique to Cementa, choristers from the Cudgegong Choir will 'sing' the stars as they rise and set over Kandos, The smartphone app is available for iPhone and Android and downloadable from

The quaint regional town of Kandos is just over 3 hours drive west of Sydney and this year's festival program will take place in 20 exciting venues. Against the backdrop of Kandos' picture perfect views, artists will make, exhibit and perform their work. Artworks and performances will pop-up in shop-fronts, cafes, on the streets, at the famous Kandos Museum, the local nursery, in parks, paddocks, garages, cars, backyards, the tennis courts, a golf club, the CWA, community halls, church yards and so much more.

NICOLE WELCH Wildeornes Land #3  (Grose Valley self-portrait draped in 1880's chantilly lace mourning shawl) Still - from time-lapse film - edition of 6, Courtesy of the Artist & Cementa
Nicole Welch spent several weeks at BigCi artist residency near the Wollemi National Park where she researched and created work for this exhibit. Nicole will have a major solo exhibition at Blue Mountains Cultural Centre during Cementa.

Artists are invited to stay in Kandos on a residency in the lead up to the festival event. This opportunity provides engagement with local residents and time to explore the town, discover its important history in relation to the urban development of Sydney and visit the natural environment of Ganguddy (Dunns Swamp) in nearby Wollemi National Park.

Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa
Pagoda Parkour by Powerhouse Youth Theatre and Dauntless Movement Crew. (At Ganguddy developing the work for Cementa 17)

Kandos was founded 100 years ago to house the work force of the Kandos Cement Works. Over its history, cement from Kandos has built the Harbour Bridge and much of the city of Sydney. In 2012 the cement works closed, leaving the town without a defining industry and an opportunity for transformation. The team behind the Cementa festival (three locals who live and work in the region) believe that the presence of this industrial heritage in the rural heartland of NSW provides an ideal context for the demonstration of contemporary art's capacity to describe, engage, critique and celebrate both the world and our living in it.

Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa
Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa

Cementa 17 is a free, family-friendly event. All are welcome to head down for a day trip or extend their stay and immerse themselves in the creative spirit of this fascinating arts festival. It's sure to surprise and delight all ages! Bookings may apply for some events. For more information on the festival program and to plan your visit, please visit

Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa
Photograph by Alex Wisser - Courtesy of Cementa
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When: 6-9 April 2017
Where: Kandos, NSW
Cost: Free
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