The ‘Free the Arts’ protest group has with politicians in Canberra. The group’s 65 delegates from arts organisations around the country have called for a halt to Arts Minister George Brandis’ plans to strip the Australia Council of $105 million over four years to establish his new National Programme for Excellence in the Arts (NPEA).
The delegates met yesterday with shadow arts minister Mark Dreyfus MP, as well as Senator Scott Ludlam (Greens), Senator Jacinta Collins (ALP), Tim Watts MP (ALP), Andrew Giles MP (ALP), Melissa Parke MP (ALP), and Graham Perrett MP (ALP). Brandis however, refused to meet with the delegates which represent the companies and organisations most threatened by his plan.
The nation’s Arts Minister’s manners are at least consistent. Brandis had not consulted with anyone in the arts before revealing his plan in the May budget. He told the chair of the Australia Council, Rupert Myer, about his raid on the organisation’s funding only hours before the Budget was announced. Continue Reading
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