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Funding galleries and museums – the real issue

It’s a sad reflection on the level of discussion about culture in the New South Wales Coalition government that when arts funding is mentioned to its representatives, they assume that you’re talking about a new building. Preferably one to which the dreadful words “iconic” and [...]

September 17th, 2017|2 Comments

Lessons from the Powerhouse debacle

Pointed questions at the parliamentary inquiry Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s Coalition government in NSW is under increasing fire over its arts policy following the latest hearing by the Upper House Inquiry into Museums and Galleries. The public inquiry, which has again postponed its reporting date (now [...]

September 4th, 2017|1 Comment

The Powerhouse scandal: A case study in cultural vandalism

Beware governments that talk about community consultation, but in practice fall in with the wishes of the developers. At the end of July, after months of speculation and in flagrant disregard for her own government’s community consultation process, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced that the [...]

August 22nd, 2017|11 Comments

Behind the Archibald controversy

By JUDITH WHITE Artist John Olsen first came to public prominence back in 1953, as a leader of art students protesting against the conservative Archibald Prize choices of the Art Gallery of New South Wales Board of Trustees. That's him on the left of the [...]

July 30th, 2017|0 Comments

Arts boards and the culture of secrecy

In 2007 the Australian Public Service Commission published a set of guidelines entitled Building Better Governance. Under the heading “Clear Accountability Mechanisms” it stated: “Australian Public Service agencies are accountable to the general public through the Parliament as well as to the Government. The success [...]

July 16th, 2017|0 Comments

Risks of gallery expansion

Last year international art consultant Adrian Ellis, an expert in new construction, wrote in the London-based publication The Art Newspaper about the trend away from the grandiose museum expansion plans of previous decades. He gave this warning: “The shoals and whirlpools of capital projects still [...]

July 4th, 2017|5 Comments