CATE is the Centre for Art and Technology experimentation.
CATE@thesmelter is an innovative art and technology environment – showcasing the best innovation in art and technology, a place where artists work with technical experts and inventors, scientists and skilled tradesmen.
CATE@thesmelter is situated at the former Alcoa Smelter site and surrounding wetlands at Point Henry on the north eastern end of Corio Bay. It combines multiple indoor and outside exhibition spaces with a large area of studios, collaboration areas, workshops and specialist technical facilities.
The art and technology museum area houses a permanent collection as well as a changing schedule of temporary exhibitions. These include a exhibitions from established Australian and international artists, innovative technological installations and the work of new and emerging artists. There are also triennial blockbuster exhibitions of contemporary international innovative art and technology.
An emphasis of CATE@thesmelter is environmental awareness. An innovator in the use of renewable energies, CATE has 100megawatts of roof solar panels, 12 wind turbines and experimental installations for the generation of wave energy. A new project is Webb and Jackson’s world-first tidal generator, making use of the high speed tidal currents adjacent to Point Henry where the shipping channel enters the inner harbour of Corio Bay. The extra power from renewable sources is exported to the Australian electricity grid via existing high tension lines. With limited private parking available on site, visitors are encouraged to use ferries from Melbourne, Geelong and Werribee, and the new light rail link around the waterfront from Geelong. During construction of the new rail link from Avalon International Airport (which provides rapid train travel to CATE and the Bellarine Peninsula with a tunnel from Avalon Beach to Point Henry), a shuttle bus and Ferry service will operate between Avalon Beach and the former Alcoa Pier at Point Henry.
Accommodation is available on site for artists. There is also short term high-end boutique accommodation in individual architect designed self-contained apartments with magnificent views across Corio Bay to the Geelong skyline.
Technical facilities include:
- a foundry
- Fitting and turning workshop
- carpentry shop
- ceramics studio
- sculpture space
- Printmaking studio
- Sound and video studio
- Environmental science laboratories
- Renewable energy laboratories