The polit­i­cal agen­da of recent times has been sig­nif­i­cant­ly influ­enced by minor­i­ty par­ties hold­ing major­i­ty influ­ences to account. Some for good and some not admit­ted­ly. But nev­er­the­less it has forced major par­ties to step up to the nego­ti­at­ing table and bar­gain and prop­er­ly debate posi­tions and poli­cies. It has become increas­ing­ly appar­ent that nei­ther major nor minor par­ties in Aus­tralia hold strong inter­ests in sup­port­ing artis­tic indus­tries. Whether they be artists who work with paint or sculp­ture (that we imme­di­ate­ly and inac­cu­rate­ly lim­it “Art” to), or artists involved in trades such as film, jour­nal­ism, archi­tec­ture, music, web design, pho­to retouch­ing, hair dress­ing, baris­tas (have your looked at the top of your cof­fee late­ly) , cook­ing, per­son­al train­ing (sculpt­ing bod­ies), fash­ion design, illus­tra­tion, authors, direc­tors, act­ing, pho­tog­ra­phy, singing, prop and wardrobe design, dancers, acro­bat­ics, mod­el build­ing, etc. Art is mul­ti­fac­eted but sur­pris­ing­ly mar­gin­alised, polit­i­cal­ly and social­ly, except when we want some­one to per­form these ser­vices. Some­thing many of us do the moment we lis­ten to music or a film or a “good” pho­to or a web page on our smart phones and still man­age to rel­e­gate our dai­ly occu­pa­tion with Art to being the pro­duc­tion of that weird group of cre­atives who’s edu­ca­tion was large­ly derived from the dis­par­aged “Arts Degree”. Polit­i­cal­ly dis­par­aged with their fund­ing in free fall (often so tied up in red tape as to be obstruct­ing rather than encour­ag­ing), with their trades being reduced (jour­nal­ists and pho­tog­ra­phers los­ing jobs at papers) it has become appar­ent to some, it is time to fight back. And to do so, in the polit­i­cal are­na.

The Arts Party
The Arts Par­ty

Enter The Arts Par­ty! The rad­i­cal idea of two gen­tle­men who are artists cur­rent­ly employed by that epi­cen­ter of under­fund­ed and polit­i­cal­ly dis­par­aged organ­i­sa­tions, the ABC. One an actor and the oth­er a jour­nal­ist, Nicholas Gled­hill and Patrick Collins respec­tive­ly, they have insti­gat­ed the com­mence­ment of a crowd fund­ing plat­form, to both fund and gain the num­bers to legal­ly reg­is­ter this polit­i­cal Par­ty.
http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-australian-arts-party/

In the inter­ests of trans­paren­cy and dis­clo­sure of con­flicts of inter­est, I am per­son­al­ly involved in film, mul­ti­me­dia and graph­ic design con­cerns. ( as if the rest of my web site didn’t clue you into that). It became imme­di­ate­ly appar­ent to me that an Arts Par­ty could front so many con­cerns, not only of my indus­try, but mul­ti­ple oth­er artis­tic indus­tries under threat from entrenched bureau­cra­cy , polit­i­cal and social indif­fer­ence, poor pro­files, reduced work oppor­tu­ni­ties and under fund­ing. The poli­cies of this par­ty are admit­ted­ly still under con­struc­tion and it is ear­ly days. What they need now is your sup­port so the par­ty can be reg­is­tered. $20 per person/artist and your name and address is not a big ask for what it can poten­tial­ly do for the cur­rent­ly polit­i­cal­ly unsup­port­ed Arts com­mu­ni­ty. Less than what I some­times pay for Lunch at a cafe in New­town. What they will need lat­er, is your input into pol­i­cy and direc­tion for the Par­ty (as of course after read­ing this you will be join­ing up). The inter­est­ing real­i­ty is, that as I write this, they have a third of the num­bers sup­port for fed­er­al reg­is­tra­tion but inter­est­ing­ly already half the mon­ey required, as Artists see­ing the val­ue of this, are com­mit­ting more mon­ey than they are being asked for. So I am not alone in recog­nis­ing the val­ue of this. (And yes, I did con­tribute more than was asked.)

Article from as "The Inner City Weekender" for the 1st of November [Page 10]
Arti­cle about The Arts Par­ty from as “The Inner City Week­ender” from the 1st of Novem­ber [Page 10]
The Arts par­ty has already acquired inter­ests from small pub­li­ca­tions such as “The Inner City Week­ender” from the 1st of Novem­ber [Page 10] (image from that repli­cat­ed here) and Metro Screen [http://metroscreen.org.au/arts-party-campaign-passes-45-funded-in-7-days/] . The Arts News por­tal has cre­at­ed an arti­cle of sup­port for the Par­ty too at:
[http://www.artnewsportal.com.au/art-news/the-australian-arts-party] so inter­est is grow­ing.

Besides the Indiegogo crowd fund­ing page there is of course a Face­book page [https://www.facebook.com/TheArtsParty] and it’s own ded­i­cat­ed page at [http://www.theartsparty.org]. All these exist to help you make an appraisal of this new ven­ture. I would encour­age you to con­sid­er sign­ing up with a hope to see­ing a bright and sup­port­ed future for the Arts in Aus­tralia.

 

Post Turn­bull Appen­dum:

Since Tony Abbott’s evic­tion, the Arts port­fo­lio is yet again shared with oth­er port­fo­lios and still has not been giv­en a sin­gu­lar advo­cate.  While Bran­dis has moved on, the poli­cies of the par­ty have not.  Sen­a­tor the Hon Mitch Fifield has become Min­is­ter for Com­mu­ni­ca­tions AND the Min­is­ter for the Arts. Still this min­is­ter has not found the time to draw up a pol­i­cy for the Arts at the Fed­er­al lev­el because one pre­sumes he is busy with the mess the pre­vi­ous com­mu­ni­ca­tions min­is­ter left behind him with the more expen­sive­ly grow­ing NBN pol­i­cy and imple­men­ta­tion. Aside from keep­ing Indige­nous artistry and lan­guages alive, the poli­cies of cut­ting or divid­ing up fund­ing for the Arts has con­tin­ued unin­ter­rupt­ed. The Arts Par­ty in the mean­time is not only reg­is­tered but put up a can­di­date in Joe Hockey’s old seat and attract­ed 2% of the vote for a first time can­di­date, Lou Pol­lard, (a local Clown Doc­tor) in a par­ty most peo­ple hadn’t even heard of in North Syd­ney.