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Emilie Collyer, who had an awesome piece in the latest Torpedo, has a creative, thoughtful and immediate kind of blog, between the cracks

- Literary Minded

Sunday
Mar202016

Without Excellence, Then What?

I was delighted to be invited to contribute to Amateur Professional Magazine by artist Vanessa White as part of her exhibition of the same name. She asked me to reflect on this notion of amateur / professional when it comes to making art. My immediate response was to think about the language used by former Federal Minister for the Arts George Brandis in 2015 when he slashed money from the Australia Council and announced the (short lived) National Program for Excellence in the Arts.

Here are the first few paragraphs of the essay, a video that shows the very gorgeous magazine and links to the exhibition details and where you can buy the magazine and read the rest of my essay!

Without Excellence, Then What?

A Meditation on How We Know Whether Art is Good or Not

By Emilie Collyer

 

The National Program for Excellence in the Arts promised to be a beacon of hope. After all none of us seeks Badness, Hopelessness, Not Very Goodness or Shitness in the Arts. Do we?

 

Its arrival, heralded by a man who so much understood the important of Branding in the Arts that he had it embedded into his own name (original spelling, unconfirmed, thought to be Brand-arse), brought sighs of relief to Art Makers, Art Producers, Art Presenters and Art Consumers throughout the Land.

 

Finally. Finally. Someone had heard our cries. For up until this point it was a long acknowledged (if under discussed) truism that Excellence was the key ingredient missing in about 98% of Australia’s artistic output, well over 130% of our arts training institutions and up to 14,755% of our federally funded federal arts federally funded funding bodies ...

 

To read more, buy the magazine here

To see the magazine in all its glory, check out this video

To see the full exhibition, come here

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