The 2014–15 Annual Report highlights the transformation that the Australia Council has undergone to deliver strong outcomes for the arts sector and its audiences.
The year was shaped by the ambitions articulated in our new Strategic Plan, where Council plays a leadership role in advocating for the arts, fostering artistic excellence and increasing national and international engagement with Australian art and artists to build a vibrant arts sector.
As the nation’s principal arts body, the Council continues to champion and invest in Australian arts through the realisation of our strategic goals.
$191.5 million invested in grant and project funding to artists and arts organisations.
17.7 million audience attendances at activities supported by the Australia Council.
$6.5 million in private support leveraged to build Australia’s new pavilion in Venice.
1,964 grants and projects supported to explore, experiment and entertain.
8,855 ambitious new artistic works created with Council support.
989 individual artists recognised for excellence through Council funding.
175 organisations were strengthened by multi-year funding through the Key Organisations and the Major Performing Arts frameworks.
$28.9 million to foster artistic vibrancy and access through arts investment in regional Australia.
The Australian arts sector is a broad and complex ecology comprising artists working independently and in groups with those who produce, present and promote the arts. Their creative endeavours are undertaken with arts companies of all sizes, festivals, publishers, producers, venues, and many other commercial and not for profit entities.
The Council has a unique national leadership role which includes direct and indirect engagement with every facet of the sector. Charged with the role of champion and investor, the Council promotes artistic vibrancy, sustainability and excellence through support and strategic development of arts organisations.Read more about support for arts organisations
The Australia Council invests in artistic excellence and promotes freedom of artistic expression through peer assessed grants programs for individuals, groups and organisations.
The new grants model reflects changing artistic practices and supports a wider range of activities that deliver benefits to the arts sector and audiences nationally and internationally. This model enables a broader and more diverse range of artists and organisations to apply for funding towards the creation and presentation of excellent work.
While maintaining a commitment to traditional art forms, the grants program is now more accessible to emerging areas of practice and cross-art form work. For the first time, applicants are able to select the art form panel they will be assessed by, including a new dedicated panel of multi-art form peers. The new grants program is supported by a much larger and more diverse pool of expert peers, which includes 650 artists, arts workers and industry experts.Read more about the new grants model
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture is the oldest living continuous culture in the world, and we cherish the importance of traditional arts practices and the dynamism of new forms of artistic practice. The Council acknowledges the need for artists, arts organisations and communities to participate in a cultural life, and to conserve and innovate traditional and contemporary artistic expressions for future generations to appreciate and engage with, as they understand their cultural inheritance and identity as Indigenous peoples. Artistic and cultural vibrancy are a key focus of the work produced by Indigenous arts organisations.
In 2014–15 a total of $10.7 million was invested in arts and cultural activities with a predominantly Indigenous focus, through direct project grants ($2.3 million), the Major Performing Arts companies, Key Organisations, strategic initiatives, and grants in other areas of practice.Read more about our support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts