Articles on Arts funding

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Open access publishing enables free and easy dissemination of work, but this does not meant that it engages with literary culture. Titles are isolated from bookshops, reviews, and cultural conversations. Photo by Fred Kearney on Unsplash

The open access shift at UWA Publishing is an experiment doomed to fail

The notion that a respected publishing house can be replaced by open access publishing is disproved by examining other recent examples, such as the now-closed University of Adelaide Press.
The Australian Ballet, here performing Monument, is one of the 29 Major Performing Arts companies whose funding is guaranteed. Artists are calling for these 29 organisations to lose their special status. Lukas Coch/AAP

Just 29 companies receive 59% of Australia Council funding. Artists are calling for a change

Among growing feelings of despair in the Australian arts sector, more than 700 leading artists and arts-workers have signed a petition calling for the Major Performing Arts framework to be abolished.
Kate Sherman and Nicci Wilks in Theatreworks’ 2016 production of the play Animal. The acclaimed Melbourne theatre company has lost its long-term Australia Council funding. Theatreworks

Cut throat competition, ‘corporate-speak’ and dark ironies: two new five-year arts plans

Both the Australia Council's and South Australia's new five-year arts plans talk the talk, but fail to provide vital arts funding and structural support for a diverse arts culture.
Communications and Arts Minister Mitch Fifield during a press conference in Canberra in June 2018. Over the last six years of Coalition government, there has been a lack of strong policy initiatives and a neglect of smaller arts organisations. Lukas Coch/AAP

Arts and culture under the Coalition: a lurch between aggression and apathy

The Coalition government's approach to arts and culture policy has been one of ad hocism and neglect. Perhaps most serious has been the damage done to the Australia Council and the ABC.
Dancers perform a scene from the Sydney Dance Company’s WOOF: the arts are one of the ways we make sense of our place in an increasingly confusing, and confused, world. Joel Carrett/AAP

Missing in action: a vision for the arts in the 2019 budget

Where is the nation-building cultural vision, the statement of cultural aspiration in this budget?
Tourists queue to take a photograph of the Mona Lisa at The Louvre. © NikkiJohnson, Image Perception

Beyond bulldust, benchmarks and numbers: what matters in Australian culture

At a time when even accountants are looking for a more compelling understanding of value, it is imperative that the arts – where individual experience is central – resist the evangelical call of quantification.
Peter Coleman-Wright and Merlyn Quaife during a dress rehearsal of Bliss in 2010: it is one of few important local operas over the past three decades to have been staged a second time. Tracey Nearmy/AAP

Friday essay: where is the Great Australian Opera?

Australian operas have been written about many pressing topics - from the Stolen Generations to the Lindy Chamberlain case - but few have been staged a second time. What is going wrong?
‘The shape of things to come’, installation view at Buxton Contemporary, the University of Melbourne, March 2018. Photograph by Christian Capurro.

Private collectors are saving Australian art, but they can’t do it on their own

Philanthropists are creating new galleries to share their private collections with the Australian public. But these gifts do not ameliorate the deficit left by declining government arts fundings.
Artist Cathrin Machin successfully crowdfunded her project Beautifully Nerdy Deep Space Paintings & Prints. Cathrin Machin/Used with permission

Is the future for artists in crowdfunding?

Many Australian artists have seized on the chance to crowdfund their work through agents such as Patreon and Kickstarter. But crowdfunding should not be a substitute for government support for the arts.

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