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Vale Paddy Garritty

The Australia Council wishes to acknowledge the passing of Paddy Garritty and pay tribute to his prolific contribution to community arts that improved the lives of many Australians.

Paddy was a founding member and long-term Board Director at the Footscray Community Arts Centre, and a major force in the revitalization of the Victorian Trades Hall.

He led the introduction of arts and cultural activities, establishing the Trades Hall as an artistic and social centre within the Australian union movement. His work at the Trades Hall has been credited as one of the main inspirations for the Australia Council’s “Art in Working Life”, originally developed in the 1980s and continuing through the 1990s.

In 1990, he was awarded the Australia Council Ros Bower award for his lifelong commitment to the principles and practice of community cultural development in the western suburbs of Melbourne.

Australia Council Head of Sector Development Jade Lillie said:

“Paddy will be remembered as a generous and powerful advocate for workers’ rights, arts and culture and communities across Melbourne’s West.  For those of us who had the pleasure of working with Paddy, it always felt like a wonderful gift  to watch his eyes light up when he would talk about the ‘early days’ and his delight in living to see the legacy of his contributions.

His legacy lives on through Footscray Community Arts Centre, Victorian Trades Hall and through the hearts and practice of artists and cultural workers who are committed to social change, social justice and ensuring that everyone has access to arts, culture and community. Our thoughts and condolences are with Mary and his family”.



Brianna Roberts


(02) 9215 9030

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