Sydney’s bid to save its creative soul

City of Sydney Katherine GriffithsLocal and international arts experts will discuss ways to save Sydney’s creative soul at a public event, as soaring costs push artists out of the city.

City of Sydney research shows an alarming number of spaces where creatives once made and exhibited work in the last decade have been lost to a booming residential property market.

Like other rapidly urbanising global cities, a lack of affordable, suitable workspace for arts and creative industries is the primary issue facing Sydney’s cultural life, with the need for a solution now critically urgent.

“While Sydney is a powerhouse of culture for the nation, what makes that possible is at risk. Our creative workforce increasingly can’t afford to live or work in Sydney,” said Lord Mayor of Sydney, Clover Moore AO.

“Sydney’s rising property prices, the transformation of former industrial areas and the pandemic have savaged our cultural life – threatening the viability of live music venues, small theatres, galleries and rehearsal spaces, and the affordability of studios, workshops and warehouses.”

“Culture and creativity are the soul of our cities and communities. They create a sense of belonging, revitalise neighbourhoods, build communities, drive innovation and contribute to local economies.”

“Losing the people with the ideas and skills that make up the lifeblood of Sydney’s cultural life is not an option. Join us to discuss how solutions like precinct revitalisation and a creative lands trust could work for Sydney,” said the Lord Mayor.

Speakers from the worlds of film, fashion, urban planning, government and the performing arts include:

  • Clover Moore AO – Lord Mayor of Sydney
  • Claudia Karvan OAM – Australian actor and producer
  • The Hon John Graham MLC – Special Minister of State, Minister for Roads, Minister for the Arts, Minister for Music and the Night-Time Economy and Minister for Jobs and Tourism
  • Justine Simons OBE – Deputy Mayor of London for Culture and the Creative Industries and Founder and Chair of the World Cities Culture Forum
  • Darren Dale – Board Chair Sydney Film Festival, Producer Blackfella Films
  • Hellen Morgan-Harris – Director Tortuga Studios, Co-chair City of Sydney Cultural and Creative Sector Advisory Panel
  • Sara Mansour – Co-founder and Executive Director, Bankstown Poetry Slam, former Chair Artists Advisory Panel to the Minister of Arts on the NSW Arts, Culture and Creative Industries Policy
  • Alex Schuman – CEO Carla Zampatti
  • Marcus Westbury OAM – CEO and Co-founder

Free tickets for the CityTalks panel discussion, Making space for culture – the future of Sydney’s creative economy, are available now.

Making space for culture – the future of Sydney’s creative economy
Centennial Hall – Sydney Town Hall, 483 George Street, Sydney
Event: Wednesday 12 June 2024 (6:30pm-8:30pm)
Bookings: (free – bookings essential)

For more information, for details.

Image: Katherine Griffiths | City of Sydney