26 September 2023

New model body to lead arts’ futures

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A new Government body is to be established under a five-year plan to renew and revive Australia’s arts, entertainment and cultural sector.

Announced by the Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, ‘Creative Australia’ is to be the country’s principal arts investment and advisory body.

Mr Albanese said the establishment of Creative Australia was the centrepiece of a new National Cultural Policy, Revive, developed by the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts.

“The governing body of Creative Australia will continue to be known as the Australia Council,” Mr Albanese said.

“Creative Australia will expand on and modernise the Australia Council’s work with additional funding of $200 million over four years,” he said.

“Funding decisions will be made on the basis of artistic merit and at arm’s length from Government.”

In addition, Mr Albanese said four new bodies would be established within Creative Australia, including a First Nations-led body; Music Australia; Writers Australia; and a new Centre for Arts and Entertainment Workplaces.

He said Revive was built on five pillars: First Nations First; A Place for Every Story; Centrality of the Artist; Strong Cultural Infrastructure; and Engaging the Audience.

Mr Albanese said the Policy also committed Government to introducing legislation to protect First Nations knowledge and cultural expressions; developing a First Nations creative workforce strategy; funding the establishment of a National Aboriginal Art Gallery in Alice Springs and an Aboriginal Cultural Centre in Perth; and $11 million to establish a First Nations Languages Policy Partnership.

Revive also commits the Government to regulating Australian content on streaming platforms; improving lending rights and incomes for Australian writers; increased funding for regional art; and dozens of other measures,” the Prime Minister said.

Chief Executive of the Australia Council, Adrian Collette said the Policy was a transformational step in the evolution of the Australia Council for the Arts.

“Creative Australia will be an even bigger, bolder champion and investor in Australian arts and creativity,” Mr Collette said.

“As we transform to become Creative Australia, we will forge even stronger connections with the public, private and commercial sectors,” he said.

“This will enable us to connect Australian stories with audiences and build the marketplace for those stories to be shared on a national and international scale, enhancing our reputation, and bringing our rich culture to the world.”

Mr Collette said the return of investment to the Australia Council would also enable it to effectively support the sector through its existing programs.

The 113-page National Cultural Policy Revive can be downloaded at this PS News link.

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