The cost of rent in Sydney is a justifiably popular conversation topic at the moment. Particularly for artists and others working in a creative field, living in the inner city can seem like a distant dream.
We’ve very excited to open applications for six one bedroom apartments / studio spaces on William Street, Darlinghurst. This is the first ever opportunity to apply for a City-supported residential tenancy, in a beautiful building in an unbelievably central location. Click here for details on how to apply (hurry – inspections have started and applications close on 10 January).
In the meantime, we chat to Kelly Robson at Gaffa, who is coordinating the application process, about this great opportunity and what it takes to score a tenancy.
1. Why is the Creative Live Work Spaces tenancy worth applying for?
I have no doubt that the program signals a significant shift in the approach towards the issue the City faces of holding on to our artists. It is the first opportunity of its kind available through the City of Sydney and it is met with much excitement from the creative industry. In addition to obvious financial benefits and the great location, the tenants will instantly become part of existing creative networks.
2. Who should apply?
This opportunity is open to those working in creative industry Australia wide. This includes (but isn’t limited to) visual artists, performance artists, creative writers, fashion designers, product designers and sound artists. For those from interstate, it is an opportunity to experience living in Sydney at an affordable rent. For locals, it’s an opportunity to focus on their practice rather than making ends meet. You’ll be right in the thick of things.
3. What will you be looking for when selecting tenants? How can people stand out?
We will be looking for individuals who have demonstrated a clear commitment to their chosen practice and who are active in their community. We’ll be particularly interested in the main objectives they hope to achieve within their 12 months in the space and how they propose to capitalise on the opportunity. We are also interested in applicants who have familiarised themselves with what’s happening in Sydney in 2014 and have identified the synergies with their own goals.
4. Why is Gaffa involved?
Gaffa is first and foremost about access and has been since we opened seven years ago. For artists and designers this is access to space, networks, equipment, support and an infrastructure. Our own program, which at full capacity houses nine independent companies, 12 makers and designers on the workshop level, four exhibitions on the gallery level and a pop up arcade and a cafe, is testament to the success of such collaborations. Projects like this increase the longevity and depth of inner-city art initiatives and help shape the face of Sydney’s creative community. For Gaffa it’s a perfect fit.
5. Why is Darlinghurst a good place for an artist or someone working in a creative field to be?
I have lived in the area for over four years now, and the Gaffa Precinct, is only a fifteen minute walk away – so I have been pretty much submersed every day. It is a neighbourhood rich with activity and opportunity. There is something happening every single night, whether it’s exhibition openings, workshops or performances. Over in Kings Cross there is artist run space Alaska Projects, up the hill there is the Darlinghurst Theatre and right next door to the building is the other part of the William St Creative Hub, which is now thriving with a number of creative enterprises. There is a genuine sense of community amongst the creatives who have gravitated there and it never takes too long for new faces to become familiar. The Darlo on Darlinghurst Road is a regular haunt for those doing the evening art rounds to convene for a drink and a de-brief at the end of the night.
A typical artist live work space
View of the building from across William Street
View from the rooftop