The River of Art Festival began in 2004 and now, in its 20th year, is regarded as one of the most significant cultural events in the NSW south coast regional calendar. 

The Festival showcases all forms of visual art from paintings and sculpture through to performances, music and creative workshops. 

More than 130 events and activities run across the region from Durras to Bermagui over 10 days, attracting a large visitor and local community audience.  

The River of Art Festival is one of the two Hallmark Events recognised and supported by the Eurobodalla Shire Council. The other hallmark event is the Narooma Oyster Festival with whom we have a close working relationship. River of Art engages with local Chambers of Commerce and arts groups in all the towns and communities in the region, particularly the three hub towns of Batemans Bay (north), Moruya (central) and Narooma (south). The River of Art festival’s Board comprises volunteers with rich and diverse experience and a well-structured and organised team. Our skills include executive management, art practice, communications, marketing, law, advertising, journalism, finance and governance, as well as not-for-profit and arts administration. Our team includes top-notch marketing experts, online media specialists, and world-class designers.


  • The Festival launch and announcement of Art Prize on 27 September attracting media attention and over 120 guests
  • The vibrant Arts Trail program showcasing open studios, galleries and interactive workshops. In 2023 nearly 100 events took place across the south coast.
  • River of Art Prize and Exhibition. The annual prize attracts some 67 entries and in 2023 we displayed 33 finalists at the Bay Pavilions for the duration of the Festival. The exhibition attracted over 800 visitors and the introduction of the ‘People’s Choice’ awards attracted a large number of votes.
  • Art on Parade: shopfronts across the Eurobodalla Shire feature local artists
  • Other creative workshops and exhibitions, as well as music and performances.
  • Special exhibitions or feature events that will ignite local areas and link to local hospitality or tourism destinations.

marketing program

The River of Art marketing strategy aims to raise the Eurobodalla region’s profile, promote local artists, attract visitors, and engage the local community.

In 2023 our website drew 10,000 visitors over 18,000 sessions. We reached 180,000 through social media (Facebook, Instagram) and grew our email database to 2,300. Through our media partnerships and PR we reached nearly 7,500,000 people.

 Our survey data shows that most people hear about the Festival through social media and email, though word of mouth continues to be effective.  Our advertising program kicks-in from July with extensive advertising with the Region Group, Her Canberra, 2EC, SE ABC and local media.

We are particularly focussed on our digital campaigning, and work with a specialised marketing and communications agency to conduct a Meta ads campaign. The campaign highlights the beauty and attractions of the Eurobodalla region, the key towns and tourism highlights, as well as the participating artists.

Other marketing avenues include using tourism-specific channels such as the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse, Destination NSW, Eurobodalla Tourism and Visit Canberra websites. We also co-promote the Festival with like-minded festivals such as the Narooma Oyster Festival.

Our printed collateral includes Save the Date ‘postcards’, A4 and A3 posters placed throughout shop fronts, tourism attractions and galleries in the region. In addition, large-scale signage is placed around highly visible sites promoting the Festival. We also use our ‘Pink Cube’ gallery (a hot pink mobile shipping container festooned with a mural) to promote the events.

economic and social benefit

The River of Art Festival offers the following economic and social benefits to the community:
  • Increasing economic opportunities in a lower socio-economic region, with a significant economic multiplier effect. In 2023 it is estimated the Festival contributed $11.2million to the region, particularly through boosted accommodation, extended stays and an increase in average spend on the final weekend.
  • Engendering cooperative partnerships with many and varied businesses, tourism and community entities in the region.
  • Fostering local creativity and cultural expression for professional and amateur artists within and beyond the region.
  • Creating opportunities for creative arts workers to participate and opportunities for artists to sell their work, learn new skills and gain new/extended patronage.
  • Enhancing a strong sense of place and community identity through local participation in art, performance and new cultural experiences which strengthen the region’s social fabric, health and well-being.
  • Providing arts experiences/skills development workshops to increase interest in the arts amongst youth, disadvantaged groups and people with disabilities.
  • Drawing external visitors from ACT, Sydney and other NSW regions

Your support

Funding for the Festival is more stretched than ever and sponsorship or donations are key to presenting a bold and innovative arts program across the region.

Key to the festival’s success are our partnerships with business. We welcome business support for the Festival, whether it be cash or in-kind such as venues, food and beverages, facilities or expert services.

We can tailor packages for partners that are right for your businesses and for our Festival and we look forward to discussing your support for the River of Art Festival.


With a budget of up to $100,000, the Festival needs support from governments and partners.

We invite you to be a partner for the 2024 River of Art Festival. Our options are detailed below, but we would be delighted to discuss a tailored package that suits your business needs.

INVEST $10,000 and receive:

  • Acknowledgement, prior to the commencement of our marketing campaign,
  • Consistent visibility and reinforcement of your company’s market leadership and brand on our website
  • Branding on the main stage and at festival events and opportunity for activations at an event
  • Branding on all promotional material including tickets
  • Acknowledgement in Festival media releases
  • Two dedicated social media posts across Instagram and Facebook
  • Follow up event photos and coverage post Festival
  • Opportunity to provide promotional material during the festival and memorable content after the Festival
  • Within privacy regulations, provide you with attendance data post event
  • Invitation to opening event with media coverage


INVEST $5,000 and receive:

  • Branding on all promotional material and website, including a hyperlink Gold logo on website footer
  • Company branding at select festival events
  • Acknowledgement as Gold Partner at all River of Art events
  • Follow up event photos and coverage post Festival
  • Up to 10 gold partners for the Festival


  • Hyperlinked Silver logo on website footer (across all pages)
  • Branding on event marketing collateral 
  • Activation site in a designated part of the key event
  • Acknowledgement as Silver Partner at all River of Art events

 INVEST $1,000 to get:

  • Acknowledgement at all River of Art events as Bronze Partner
  • Bronze logo placement on the event website

Key event sponsorship opportunities

Naming Rights – River of Art Prize

The River of Art Prize is a highly popular art prize and exhibition. Artists and makers within and beyond the Eurobodalla region are encouraged to participate. Entries will be called in May 2024, announced on the opening night of the Festival, and are on display to the public until the end of the Festival. The Prize is judged by two experts providing independence and authority. The judges shortlist the finalists (up to 30 works) and then the overall winner, second and highly commended works. The prize money is $3500 for the winner, $1500 for the runner up and $500 for the artwork that is most highly commended. The People’s Choice award will be announced at the festival’s conclusion with a special prize such as a dinner or special gift available through sponsors. We believe the Art Prize is worthy of a more generous prize and offers a significant naming rights opportunity for a suitable partner. Sponsorship funds would also contribute to the opening night celebration and announcement of the winner which attracts significant media attention.

Naming rights sponsor of River of Art prize

  • Logo placement on all promotional materials including art gallery and website
  • Speaking opportunity at opening night and announcement of prize
  • Investment of $15,000 over three years or $8,000 for 2024 only.

‘This I love’ – photographic exhibition in Narooma

“This I love”  is a public art installation of photographic works lining the main pedestrian precinct of Narooma near the famous Wagonga Inlet. The installation will extend 40 metres along with the main street. It will showcase the work of exhibiting local fine art photographers, and draw locals and visitors over the 10-day River of Art Festival. This outdoor display is a way to reach a broader audience, especially for people who normally wouldn’t visit a museum or gallery, which creates inclusivity for a diverse range of people.

Tax Deductible Donation

The River of Art Festival is a registered charity with tax-deductible status. By taking advantage of tax benefits you can maximise the impact of your donation whilst enjoying potential savings on your taxes. 

Investing in the arts not only adds vibrancy to communities but fosters a sense of connection and inspiration for generations to come.

Making a donation is a rewarding way to support creativity, innovation and help showcase the cultural strengths of the NSW South Coast region.  

River of Art welcomes donations as a meaningful way to support artists and help bring creative arts events to our region.

Donations above $1,000 are recognised for their generosity on our website.