With recent reports estimating that 3 out of 4 employed in the creative and performing arts sector facing job losses, Jo Caust’s recent article in The Conversation provides a timely consideration of how governments in Australia and internationally are seeking to ameliorate these losses. In the UK, A$319 million has been allocated to support individuals and organisations; in Germany freelance and small business creative have access to a A$86 billion emergency package and in the US the National Endowment for the Arts has provided A$118 million to support the arts sector. Meanwhile (at time of writing) the Australian Government has pledged an additional A$27 million, which includes funding re-appropriated from other grant schemes in the Australia Council 2020 Resilience Fund. As Jo notes: “most artists and arts workers will not benefit from the current measures.”
In a similar vein, University of Melbourne’s Associate Professor Paul Rae explores the challenges to recovery of the arts sector in Australia, noting that the COVID crisis has been exacerbated by the longer term and ongoing arts funding cuts.
In other news, Creative Partnerships Australia has announced $220k “match” funding to be delivered in collaboration with Theatre Network Australia (TNA) and the National Association of the Visual Arts (NAVA). TNA will provide grant support of 1K to independent artists in the performing arts through its “Crisis Cash for Artists” while NAVA is offering $2k immediate assistance funding through the Artists’ Benevolent Fund.