Seven Indigenous artists with strong links to the Wiradjuri country of Central Western New South Wales are heading to Melbourne for the opportunity of a lifetime. They have been chosen from a high quality field of candidates to attend a custom designed textile training workshop at Kangan Institute's Textile and Fashion Hub at the Richmond campus. The workshop is the result of a far sighted partnership between the Wiradjuri Condobolin Corporation (WCC) and Kangan Institute. It is the first step in the WCC's move to establish an Indigenous textile and fashion business which would provide training and employment opportunities for the local community. As part of an intensive three-day workshop, held from May 21 to 23, the artists will learn to transfer their skills from canvas to wearable cloth. They will be based at the Textile and Fashion Hub where they will have access to cutting edge digital equipment and technical expertise. The artists will receive training from leading young Indigenous designer Lucy Simpson, creator of textiles label Gaawaa Miyay, who has been cited by trade magazines as one of Australia's top 10 designers to watch. Screen print training will be provided by another leader in the fashion industry giving support to the program - print and production studio NMBQ (New Model Beauty Queen). The talented workshop participants include accomplished artist and art teacher Nyree Reynolds, painter, illustrator and designer Gail Naiden, painter and sculptor Graham Toomey, artist and weaver Kath Withers, painter and art teacher Miree Louise Bayliss, renowned traditional weaver and artist Beverley Coe and artist, seamstress and jewellery-maker Dawn Johnson. "This workshop will give accomplished artists from our region a rare and exciting opportunity to learn from experienced designers and professionals in the fashion and textiles world," Terry Williams, CEO of the WCC said today. "This initiative would not have been possible without the very generous assistance provided by Kangan Institute and the International Fibre Center and without access to the cutting edge production technology and resources of the Textile and Fashion Hub. We are also very grateful for the generous support from NMBQ." Mr Williams said the high quality of artists responding to a call for expressions of interest made a final choice difficult. However, a follow-up workshop is planned for Condobolin, which would extend opportunities to more artists. Further information about the project and artists is available at www.gamarramiya.com.