NIDA acknowledges the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the lands on which we learn and tell stories, the Bidjigal, Gadigal, Dharawal and Dharug peoples, and we pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past and present.

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Vale Neil Balnaves AO 1944-2022

Above: Neil Balnaves AO (photo: Julian Andrews / Newspix)

NIDA CEO Liz Hughes today paid tribute to visionary Australian Neil Balnaves AO.

“On behalf of the students, staff and entire NIDA community I would like to pass on our love and condolences to Neil’s family and friends. The enormous generosity, deep understanding and compassion of Neil and The Balnaves Foundation has played an integral role in maintaining and growing Australia’s arts and cultural community for many years.

"NIDA’s recent partnership with The Balnaves Foundation as Principal Patron First Nations Program for a wide ranging initiative including generous scholarships, mentoring, an Elder in Residence and paid industry employment, is a testament to the incredible devotion Neil had for providing opportunities for Indigenous artists to fulfil their dreams. We anticipate that this support will be life-changing for individuals and will create more vital First Nations storytelling.”

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