As the key arts development organisation for the Lower Hunter region, we facilitate the development of arts and cultural projects and initiatives across the whole region, building a diverse and inclusive cultural landscape and increasing participation in arts and cultural activities.


Octapod plays a vital role in building cultural community capacity, through advice and advocacy, professional development opportunities and key partnerships and networks across and between Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Port Stephens and Cessnock LGA’s.

Octapod’s core business includes responding to day to day enquiries, providing immediate, ongoing and quality advice, information, professional and project support to artists and organisations. As well as a variety of long and short term projects, Octapod’s key projects are – This is Not Art and Culture Hunter.


This is Not Art (TiNA)
Newcastle’s most longstanding cultural festival, produced by Octapod since 1998. The four day festival of over 150 free events provides meaningful opportunities for artists from around the country to collaborate with like-minded creatives, and develop and present new work and ideas in a supportive and congenial environment.

The festival is delivered in partnership with co-presenters National Young Writers’ Festival, Critical Animals and Crack X. Octapod is responsible for providing the infrastructure to enable the festival to happen.

Next festival: Thursday 27 September – Sunday 30 September 2018


Culture Hunter
Culture Hunter is the only free online arts portal servicing the Lower Hunter region.

Produced by Octapod since 2006, this unique resource features arts related news, events, professional development opportunities and an ever growing database of artist profiles from across the region.

Culture Hunter supports participation in the arts through the events calendar and showcases the diversity of the cultural landscape of the region.


In addition to our two flagship projects, we deliver a range of strategic support services to the arts and cultural sector of the Newcastle and broader Lower Hunter region. Please see our Services page for more information.

Find out about more About what we do and why, and find out about our Past Projects.

Photo: The Birthday Party presented at Crack Theatre Festival as part of This is Not Art 2017. Photo: Mitch Lee