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Jewellers, musicians, theatre directors and a circus performer are amongst the 148 successful applicants to receive funding to launch their arts career, through the second round of the Australia Council for the Arts’ ArtStart program.

ArtStart is aimed at recent graduates from an accredited artist-training scheme to help them build an income-generating career. The call out for the second round of grants was kicked off in March with the launch of a new tongue–in-cheek “artform” called pogoism – featuring a viral video of pogoism artists painting a giant masterpiece by bouncing on pogosticks.

Graduates are encouraged to apply for grants of up to $10,000 to be used for developing skills and business support, renting studio space or purchasing tools, getting expert business advice, growing skills in marketing and promotion or putting together a portfolio or showreel. Approaches ranged from formal resource and skills sharing with other artists to small business “maker to market” models.

‘It’s great to see that our ArtStart applicants are coming from a vast range of artforms – from choreographers to multimedia artists, composers to writers of young adult fiction, said Libby Christie, Executive Director of Arts Funding at the Australia Council.

‘Common to all our recipients is the great sense of commitment, passion and vibrancy in their applications,’ she said. ‘Each of them demonstrated a real tenacity and entrepreneurial spirit on how they could carve out a sustainable career in the arts. It’s fantastic that applicants and the arts community are really starting to understand what this program is about – to provide a financial stepping stone for our next generation of artists, jumping that challenging transition from arts training to professional practice.’

The first round of ArtStart recipients are already making waves. Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts graduate Trent Suidgeest, is making his mark in the world of lighting design by using his ArtStart grant to undertake overseas networking, purchase new technology to set up his studio and create a new website. In 2010, Trent is working with Wesley Enoch on the national tour of the acclaimed show, The Sapphires.

‘I am so proud and excited to receive an ArtStart grant,’ said Trent. ‘It’s not just the money but the recognition from the Australia Council. It provides such a great boost to get my name out and to be on the radar as an emerging artist.’

For the full list of successful Round Two ArtStarters, click here

More info on See pogoism in action at

ArtStart information sessions are being held this year around the country. To find out more, become a fan of the ArtStart Facebook page and follow us on Twitter.

Applications for Round Three will be available from 23 August and will close on 4 October. FullArtStart grant information can be found at

Media contactVictoria McClelland-Fletcher 02 9215 9008



Brianna Roberts


(02) 9215 9030


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