Bill Shorten walks past the painting The Pioneer by Frederick McCubbin at the NGV Australia in Melbourne on May 11.
Labor's arts election policy includes more funding for the Australia Council and the ABC. But while this is welcome, arts and culture deserve far greater attention.
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.
Where is the nation-building cultural vision, the statement of cultural aspiration in this budget?
Adelaide has been known as the ‘Athens of the South’, but there are concerns about the current state of arts governance in South Australia.
The arts have long been championed in SA, but in recent years the sector has started to stagnate.
Artists and creatives often work in industrial spaces, which are declining in Sydney.
The loss of creative spaces to development is pricing Sydney artists out of the city. But they could be encouraged back with new cultural policies.
While the arts certainly have an economic benefit, they must also be recognised for their intrinsic value.
Economist David Throsby in a new Platform Paper calls for strong cultural policies from the Australian government.
Cirque du Soleil is one of the many Canadian artist groups that have received funding from the Canada Council for the Arts.
(Cirque du Soleil)
The new creative framework policy put forth by the Canadian government has been criticized for its capitalist and Silicon Valley leanings. But it's actually Canada's best creative policy to date.
Rather than more measurement of culture, we need more conversation about what kind of culture Australia wants.
AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy
A new approach to arts advocacy and research could be the breath of fresh air the sector needs - or just more of the same.
An installation by the conceptual artists Frank and Patrik Riklin: From the bunker to the countryside - with ‘rooms’ without walls or a roof.
It’s a strange thing when the re-entry of genuine choice into political contests is framed as “anti-politics”. It feels more historically accurate, and logical, to see it the opposite way. For the past…
Visitors take in Cameron Robbins’ Field Lines at Dark Mofo at the Museum of Old and New Art.
Many great artists died in 2016: Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen, Paul Cox, Shirley Hazzard. It was a year of creative foment and as always, intense debate about the importance of the arts to a thriving, democratic society.
Sydney Opera House during this year’s Vivid Festival: now, more than ever, we need artists to tell us the truth.
There was once a sense of excitement about creating a genuinely Australian culture and making our own way in the world. What's happened to that optimism?
David Bowie was the master of reinvention. Can the arts sector follow suit?
A culture of 'managerialism' has bled the arts of originality and purpose. We need a changed mindset and an arts and culture think-tank that is separate from the Australia Council.
Why can’t an artist offer advice to politicians in the same way a scientist can?
In one of those abyssal silences that punctuate official Thinkfests when artists have to come up with new policy ideas that don’t involve asking governments for more money, I once facetiously suggested…
Public protests forced a backdown on a proposed merger of university art schools, but their value to cities is still being underestimated.
Art schools are emerging globally as very powerful instruments of urban renewal. In a time of transformation, Sydney must learn to tap into the value of having multiple art colleges.
Three more years for Malcolm Turnbull and the Coalition.
What's in store for key policy areas, from health to education to infrastructure to asylum seekers, under a returned Coalition government?
Deep funding cuts will affect Australia’s entire arts ecology.
A 'mortal blow' to the South Australian theatre scene. 'Inexplicable' cuts to centres for photography in two states. The Australia Council's latest funding decisions have left the arts sector reeling and are evidence of a government indifferent to culture.
Banksy, photography by Chris Devers
Last night's budget failed to offer a compelling overall policy framework and vision for the arts in Australia. Like a Beckett play, narratively not much is going on.
It’s time to look back on a year of art and culture.
Blake Danger Bentley. Melbourne street art
It's another year in Arts + Culture, so in case you missed it we've collected all the best coverage of screen, theatre, music, books and culture in one place.
The BCA was probably doomed the moment Tony Abbott announced its creation out of Australia Council funds.
The Book Council of Australia – announced by Tony Abbott just over a year ago – was today scrapped. But we still need a body to advocate for literature and to advise government on policy settings.
In many quarters, the arts receiving any government support is still a contested space.
With a change in prime minister and a new arts minister there has been an acknowledgement perhaps that the arts matter. But have the needs and concerns of the arts sector have been understood?
Following a sustained and vocal campaign by the arts sector, the National Program for Excellence in the Arts has been canned.
AAP Image/Alan Porritt
Following a sustained and vocal campaign by the arts sector, the controversial National Program for Excellence in the Arts has been rethought and renamed. Should we be celebrating or concerned?