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Red Ochre Award (Lifetime Achievement)

Nominations for senior artists are accepted from arts and community organisations and individuals.

About the Red Ochre Award

The prestigious Red Ochre Award was established by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Board in 1993 to pay tribute to a senior Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person for their outstanding lifetime achievement in the arts and their contribution to the recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts, both nationally and internationally.

The Red Ochre Award recognises:

  • lifetime contribution to First Nations Arts nationally and internationally
  • lifetime contribution to the First Nations community
  • artistic leadership and arts practice.

The Red Ochre Award includes recognition of both an outstanding senior male artist and an outstanding senior female artist. The recipients of these Awards will receive $50,000 each. These awards will be presented at the First Nations Arts and Culture Awards.

Nominations for senior artists are accepted from arts and community organisations and individuals. Senior artists may not nominate themselves and nominations may only be made for a living artist. Awards will not be given posthumously.

If you need advice about your nomination, contact an Artists Services Officer.

About the First Nations Arts and Culture Awards

The First Nations Arts and Culture Awards recognise and celebrate the outstanding work and achievements of First Nations artists. On the evening of Monday 27 May 2024 the following awards will be presented:

We also acknowledge awards given to First Nations Artists across Creative Australia’s programs.

Nominations will be assessed by the First Nations Arts and Culture Strategy Panel against the assessment criteria below.


Nominations will be assessed against two criteria.

Under each criterion are bullet points indicating what the Strategy Panel members may consider when assessing your application.  You do not need to respond to every bullet point listed.

  1. First Nations Community, Arts and Culture
  • significance of the contribution to First Nations arts and cultural expression
  • inspire First Nations community to keep culture strong
  • First Nations community recognition
  • impact of engagement, the span of influence and contribution to the First Nations community
  • ensuring their practice is accessible to the First Nations community.
  1. Arts Practice and Leadership
  • substantial contribution to the development of First Nations arts nationally and internationally
  • artistic practice maintained over a significant period of time
  • outstanding body of work
  • industry and peer recognition and acknowledgment
  • significance of the work within the area of practice
  • contribution to diverse cultural expression.

The types of questions we ask in the nomination form include:

  • whether an individual or organisation is nominating someone for the Award
  • the nominee’s key art form(s) practice
  • why you are nominating this person for the Award. Include: how their personal and professional achievements in their arts practice and artistic leadership has contributed to First Nations arts and communities; and how long they have been practising their art (up to 8,000 characters).

ou must submit a CV / extended bio for the nominee (approx. 2 x A4 pages, or a link to a CV / bio on the nominee’s website).


You may submit up to two letters or statements of support (approx. 2 x A4 pages, or up to 5 minutes of audio / video).

Types of support material we accept

Our preferred method of receiving support material is via URLs (weblinks).

You can provide up to two URLs that link to content that is relevant to your nomination.

Please note:

  • Do not supply any URLs that require users to log in or sign up to a platform.
  • Do not provide links to applications that require users to log in or pay for access.

If you are linking to media files that are private or password protected, please provide the password in the password field on the nomination form.

Other accepted file formats

If you cannot supply support material via URLs, you may upload support material to your nomination in other formats, for example:

  • video (MP4, QuickTime, and Windows Media)
  • audio (MP3 and Windows Media)
  • images (JPEG and PowerPoint)
  • written material (Word and PDF).

We do not accept application-related support material submitted via post. Application-related material received by post will not be assessed and will be returned to the sender. If you think you will have difficulty submitting your support material online, or need advice on what type of material to submit, please contact Artists Services.

How to submit a nomination

To nominate log in to our Application Management System. You must register an account if you do not already have one. It may take up to two business days for us to process your registration. Once you have logged in:

  1. Select ‘Submit a Nomination’ from the left panel menu.
  2. Under ‘Awards’ select ‘Start a new award nomination’.
  3. Ensure you select the correct award from the list of options.
  4. Complete the fields and select answers using the dropdown menus.
  5. Upload any necessary support material.
  6. Select ‘Save’ once complete.
  7. If you are not ready to submit your nomination you can return to it through ‘Your Draft Applications’ in the left panel menu.
  8. When you are ready to submit your nomination, select ‘Submit’.