Our History

Established in 2000 with the inspiration and generous seed funding of the Rotary Club of Ballarat South, the Ballarat Arts Foundation (BAF) enjoys a strong, ongoing partnership with its Foundation Donors.

Since its inception, BAF has fostered meaningful partnerships with the community and business in its commitment to enriching the cultural future of Ballarat. As a result, we have grown an extensive family of supporters. It is through our Benefactors, Donors, Patrons, Life Members, Members, Partners and Event Sponsors that we receive generous financial and in-kind contributions that are the primary source of funding for our activities and aspirations. BAF’s strong connection to community has undoubtedly contributed to the longevity of the organisation.

In addition to its awards and grants program, BAF provides support services and networks for emerging artists. Our performance opportunities and exhibitions in the local community create professional platforms for our Alumni to present their work and build their artistic profile within our inspirational networks.

Since 2000, BAF’s awards and grants program has distributed almost $150,000 through 300 award presentations. Most importantly, BAF offers validation to emerging artists, which often encourages them to take the critical next step in what can be a complex and challenging journey.


Since receiving my first grant from BAF in 2004, I have pursued my art career to the best of my ability, and I’m not sure I would have done so had I not received that initial encouragement and validation that what I was doing was worthwhile.
— Kim Anderson - 2015 Alum