Creative carves his own career, inspired by community and Country

Founder of Blackspace Creative, Caleb Nichols-Mansell is a proud Tasmanian Aboriginal man with deep connections to Country, community, culture, and spirit which all inform his practice and process as an artist and leader. Blackspace Creative provides an avenue to profile Tasmanian Aboriginal artists by showcasing authentic and often bespoke jewellery, homewares, apparel, and art. As well as supporting artistic development, Blackspace has been an important project in connecting community.

“I want Blackspace Creative to be a conversation starter, to open dialogue around Aboriginal cultural heritage in Tasmania, our cultural practices, our histories”

Caleb has an extensive portfolio in graphic design and digital art. He has been commissioned by a number of leading institutes and organisations, both within the state and nationally. Stepping outside of his comfort zone, he is beginning to experiment with large scale festival and public art installations, as well as site responsive works, which will be developed in the near future.

More recently, Caleb collaborated with the Department for Education, Children and Young People to produce artwork for the Australian School Based Apprenticeship program. The project’s goal was to create promotional material that resonated with Aboriginal learners and their families, through visual identity and appropriate messaging.

“For me it was really important that we had a visual presence… …I could see the value because I already had previous experience trying to engage mob in these opportunities”

Caleb was born and raised in Launceston with his large and extended family. After attending Newstead College, he moved on to the University of Tasmania where he studied and later worked for several years. Caleb currently lives in Burnie on Tasmania’s North-West coast. He spends a lot of time at pinmatik (Rocky Cape), about a 40-minute drive away. It’s a place where he feels a strong connection to Country. Caleb’s passion and drive has been recognised at the Tasmanian Young Achiever Awards. He has won both the First Nations Achievement Award and the Premiers Young Achiever of the Year Award.

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