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A performer brandishes a 'Free the Arts' sign during a 2015 flash mob protest at the Sydney Opera House against former federal arts minister George Brandis's cuts to the Australia Council. Photo: Paul Miller / AAP

Picking up the pieces: What next for Australia’s cultural policy?

A major rethink of the value of art and culture is needed to redress the lasting damage caused by Australia’s culture wars. Justin O’Connor argues that the first policy step should be divesting from the idea of ‘creative industries’ and instead aligning the arts with public services like health, education and welfare.

Commentary Commentary

Metrics rule in the cultural Hunger Games

Two press conferences held within hours of each other on the first day of the Adelaide Fringe have been widely commented on in the local media. However, beneath the sensationalist headlines lie two issues: how do we value arts and culture, and how do we make arts and cultural policy?

The first three winners of the Stella Prize, at the 2015 ceremony: Clare Wright (2014, 'The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka'), Carrie Tiffany (2013, 'Mateship with Birds') and Emily Bitto (2015, 'The Strays'). Photo: Connor Tomas O'Brien
Books & Poetry

The tenth Stella longlist reflects its mission of creating change

As conversations about literary representation evolve, so does the Stella Prize. Five of the 12 authors on the tenth Stella Prize longlist are Indigenous, one is non-binary, and genre – including poetry – is in the mix.

Visual Art

Meet me at the spinning tree

Hossein Valamanesh was a civic poet who believed in art as a force for bringing people and ideas together. Lisa Slade sheds light on two of the late Adelaide artist’s beautiful works on display in the Art Gallery of South Australia.


Why Australia urgently needs an arts and culture reset

Now is the time to reinvent Australia’s arts and culture policy and practice to focus on its public value rather than doubling down on economic arguments, write two experts involved in a national conference in Adelaide this month that will address the crisis the sector is experiencing and explore a bold new agenda.


Where is our Garden City going?

Adelaide loves to tout its global ‘liveability’ accreditations, and lately we’ve embraced aspirations to be a ‘Well City’ and a ‘National Park City’ – but how are we actually delivering on this much-celebrated reputation?