A new horizon for arts funding

australian-moneyThe Australia Council for the Arts has announced the most significant change to its grants model in the organisation’s 40 year history. Chief Executive Tony Grybowski said the new grants model, to be implemented from January 2015, would enable an increasingly diverse range of artists and organisations to apply for funding towards the creation of excellent work and a wide range of arts activity.

“With five grant programs, streamlined criteria, and opportunities to apply for multiple stages of a project in one application, we have made it simpler and easier to apply for funding. We want to encourage ambitious projects and see more audiences captivated by work that inspires and challenges,” Mr Grybowski said.

“This is an artist-centric grants model which positively reflects extensive input from the sector, particularly through the Australia Council Review. The review identified that while our grant programs had served the arts well in the past, it needed to evolve with the sector and be more responsive to the new ways art is being made and presented.”

Peer assessment remains central to grant decisions, and the new model ensures that the Council can draw on a large and diverse pool of experts from the sector.

The new model is more transparent and efficient, allowing the Council to be more responsive to changing artistic practice and providing greater accessibility through multiple application rounds with standardised closing dates each year.

The new grants model will consist of five programs:

  • Development grants for individuals and groups valued at between $5,000 and $25,000.
  • Arts project grants for individuals and groups valued at between $10,000 and $50,000.
  • Arts project grants for organisations valued at between $10,000 and $150,000.
  • Fellowships valued at $100,000.
  • Six year funding for arts organisations.

Broader categories focusing on development and projects mean only one application is required to fund a project through various stages of the creative process. The new model also ensures that individuals or groups of artists are not competing with arts organisations.

Artists and arts organisations will benefit from increased stability through six year organisational funding, building greater capacity to develop and plan artistically vibrant programs which engage national and international audiences. Organisations and individuals will also have the opportunity to apply for project funding for up to three years.

The Council will continue to recognise exceptional emerging and established artists through our awards and deliver a suite of grant programs on behalf of the Government.

The Council will be visiting every state and territory to share information about the new grants model and engage in dialogue with the sector so that any refinements can be made before applications open in January 2015. For more information, visit: www.australiacouncil.gov.au for details.

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