Finding Footscray’s Hidden Gems through Art

Published on 04 January 2023

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Explore the rich culture, history and geography of Footscray through an artistic lens in HIDDEN Footscray, a new exhibition commencing in mid-January.

Artists contributing to the exhibition, which will be held at Footscray Community Arts, are Jody Haines, David Hourigan, Deb Bain-King, Kerry Poliness, Jason Waterhouse and Felicity Watson. Local academic Dr John Weldon is also contributing an essay.

Each artist has interpreted Footscray’s thriving urban centre through their own individual creative lens using a range of media including photography, installation, sculpture, model making, sound and text. These methods reveal new stories about Footscray and weave a new layer of history into its architectural, social and cultural fabric.


As part of the development of their artworks, the artists were invited to conduct research at either Footscray Historical Society, Living Museum of the West or the Aboriginal History Archive to draw on knowledge of the past from various viewpoints.

The HIDDEN Footscray exhibition will be open daily at the Roslyn Smorgon Gallery, Footscray Community Arts from 14 January-26 March 2023, with the launch event taking place from 3pm on 14 January. Entry is free.

A free Artist in Conversation event is also being hosted by Dr John Weldon, a local artist and Associate Professor at Victoria University, from 2pm, Sunday 26 February.

For more information, visit where you can read more about the exhibition, artists and register for the Artist in Conversation program.

Message from the Mayor, Councillor Sarah Carter

Footscray has had several lives, and is continually reinventing itself.

Council is excited to once again partner with Footscray Community Arts to provide accessible creative opportunities for local artists to take part in, and for the community and visitors to the municipality to enjoy. This adds to the vibrancy of the inner west, which is known as a creative and cultural hub. I hope everyone takes the opportunity to enjoy this exciting exhibition.

Message from Daniel Santangeli, Artistic Director and Co-CEO of Footscray Community Arts

Footscray Community Arts is a home for artists to present ambitious artistic work. We're proud to be starting 2023 with an exhibition of exceptional local artists who reflect Footscray's thriving spirit.

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Image: Footscray TV and HiFi Repair (2019), David Hourigan.