City of Karratha Public Art Procurement

Arts & Culture
The Client
City of Karratha
Project Team
Kate Parker
Associate - Arts & Culture
The Project

Over the last 40 years, Karratha has changed significantly. This began with lifting of the iron ore embargo in the 1960s and the first exports drove major demand for residential and other infrastructure. Karratha’s first modern-day residents settled in 1971, following planning and construction of an ‘open government town.’ However,
for some 40,000 years the Ngarluma and Yindjibarndi people have called the region home. Intimately acquainted with the interconnectedness of its flora, fauna, land, seasons and defining features, their connection to Country endures today.

Karratha’s narrative is wide and varied. Today, its story is about mining and resources and there is a strong vision to leverage arts and cultural pursuits to catalyse community transformation from this identity into a vibrant and desirable place – Australia’s most liveable regional city.

Our Role

In 2019 element was engaged to lead the procurement of four significant and high profile public artworks for Karratha. Complex site considerations and requirements regarding cyclone ratings were integrated into artist briefs, released via a tender process in early 2020. element then worked closely with artists / artist teams to deliver the artworks, alongside a series of community engagement sessions.


The resulting artworks will enliven Karratha’s city centre and act as iconic wayfinding and destinations, reflective of the community’s unique identity and location. This public art will become both stand alone attractions in their own right, but will also contribute to the tapestry of art and cultural experiences evident within the town – and growing steadily.

What We Delivered
  • Advisory services and recommendations as to the final artwork locations, scope and scale
  • Detailed artist briefs, released via City tender processes
  • Access to a comprehensive artist database

Related Projects

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Gallery, Carawatha Village
Public Art Strategy and Masterplans, Policy and Guidelines