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Brand X to operate Sydney’s new creative studios and appoints General Manager

Brand X to operate Sydney’s new creative studios and appoints General Manager
September 24, 2021

Brand X - one of Sydney’s leading providers of affordable space for artists - will operate the five-storey City of Sydney Creative Studios on Bathurst Street when it opens early next year offering access to dancers, musicians, film and theatre makers, digital creatives and visual artists.

The 2,000 square metre facility is the result of a voluntary planning agreement between the City of Sydney and developer Greenland Australia. The City of Sydney has signed a 99-year lease for the creative studios and engaged Brand X to operate the facility for a three-year term.

The creative studios feature:

  • two large double-height rehearsal spaces with sprung timber floors for dancers, actors and other performers
  • five soundproof recording and rehearsal studios for musicians
  • production and editing suites for filmmakers and new media artists
  • wet-dry creative studios for visual artists
  • an artist in residence apartment with an attached creative studio
  • administration and meeting spaces, dressing rooms and storerooms
  • a café in the lobby of the facility.

City of Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore notes “It has long been a priority of the City to increase centrally located, affordable space for our artists and creatives.

“This five-storey venue will accommodate creatives in the heart of the city, and help the sector’s recovery from the devasting effects of the pandemic.

“The spaces are designed for a variety of artistic disciplines and artists at different stages in their careers, and to encourage collaboration within our talented creative community.  

“By delivering workspaces and venues we’re not only supporting the arts post-lockdown, but also making our city a more interesting and inspiring place to be.”

Brand X Director James Winter enthused “we are thrilled to be appointed as operator of the City of Sydney’s state-of-the-art creative studios in the heart of the CBD. These subsidised purpose-built spaces directly address the needs of independent artists impacted by Sydney’s gentrification and affordability crisis.  

“Opening in early 2022, the creative studios signify a beacon of hope for the sector, which has demonstrated immense resilience and creativity during the pandemic, in the face of overwhelming industry-wide challenges.  

“Brand X has a longstanding collaborative relationship with the City of Sydney, as operator of the East Sydney Community and Arts Centre in Darlinghurst and creative tenancy manager of live/work apartments in William Street Darlinghurst and above Waterloo Library. We are energised at the prospect of delivering new accessible opportunities for emerging and established artists to enable practice-based experimentation, creative development and production of new work.

 “Two of Brand X’s advisory panels, including an Access and Inclusion Panel and Industry Advisory Panel will oversee the selection and incubation of projects at the facility, with a focus on developing new voices from a diverse range of disciplines and backgrounds.”   

Brand X has appointed experienced arts manager Emmaly Langridge to the newly created position of General Manager. The role was created to support the organisation’s transformative growth, signalled by City of Sydney’s announcement of Brand X as Operator of its Creative Studios.

Langridge joins Brand X with a decade of experience supporting interdisciplinary small-to-medium not-for-profit arts organisations across the East Coast of Australia. She was most recently the General Manager of Firstdraft, Australia’s longest running artist-led organisation. Alongside her role at Firstdraft, Emmaly is part of Inner West Council's LGBTIQ Working Group, advocating for the LGBTIQ community and advising on council strategies. Other previous roles include Campaign Manager at Utp, Marketing and Development Manager at Performance Space, Communications Manager and 3IC at Metro Arts, Copywriter at Marrugeku and Board Member of Crack Festival, Newcastle.

Brand X Director, Winter commented “16 years after Brand X first emerged at Queen Street Studio in Chippendale, we are thrilled to appoint Brand X’s first General Manager. Emmaly will draw on her substantial experience across the cultural sector to drive organisational growth and elevate Brand X’s position within the sector as we enter the next chapter of our organisation’s history.”

Langridge added “Brand X has a powerful history of supporting artists across the sector and I'm delighted to be part of the team as we write this exciting new chapter. Space for artistic transformation and growth is critical to the health of the national industry and our work in supporting a sustainable sector is crucial for a culturally rich future. I'm excited to continue my work within small to medium arts organisations and look forward to realising Brand X's vision."

City of Sydney Creatives Studios is located at 119 Bathurst Street.

Final building works and fitout are underway with the facility expected to open in early 2022.

Interested artists, creative practitioners and organisations can register interest in using the new facility.  To find out more about Brand X, visit brandx.org.au/

Images courtesy Brand X


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