Lucy Guerin Inc has grave concerns over the recent announcement of reallocation of arts funding away from the Australia Council for the Arts to the newly established National Programme for Excellence in the Arts. This fund will be administered directly through government and will not involve peer review to make its decisions regarding which artists and companies receive funding. This shift threatens the small to medium company sector and independent artists whilst maintaining current funding to 28 major organisations.
We value and support the independent sector. We acknowledge the inspiring arts environment these artists create as an engine for both small and large companies and beyond. But it is not just a training ground for artists, it is a vital laboratory where risk and experimentation can produce unique brilliance and allow necessary failure. This is the essence of art making: to search for new ideas and reveal them to audiences. Without this as a base line in our culture we endanger the delicate ecology of the arts and risk severing its connection to contemporary culture, setting it back by decades.
Australian independent artists and small companies represent the diversity and talent of our local scene in highly respected festivals and venues all over the world. It would be a great loss if these artists were not valued and supported in their own country.
We urge the Ministry to consider the continuing progression of a vibrant arts culture in Australia, and to maintain support for the small to medium companies and the independent sector.
Please contact your federal member here with a letter to voice your opinions.
- Lucy Guerin, 29 May 2015