Author Archives: Judith White
Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s Coalition Government has been widely criticised for its failure to support the arts in the COVID-19 crisis. The PM has responded with a handful of PR announcements. But what’s needed is a complete change of policy … Continue reading
A crucial debate is taking place over the function of cultural institutions. The concerns of a rising generation about race, gender and historical justice have to be heard. But it’s equally important to defend heritage collections and the cultural achievements … Continue reading
On 1 August didgeridoo artist-composer William Barton and violinist Véronique Serret brought their composition Heartland to online audiences via the Melbourne Digital Concert Hall. It is a work to resonate across Australia and around the world.
Prime Minister Morrison’s Coalition Government has committed $270 billion to militarisation, while universities, public broadcasters and the arts face devastation. The implications for Australian society are grim.
In an extraordinary about-turn, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced that she will retain the Powerhouse Museum at Ultimo and build a new museum at Parramatta.
Black Lives Matter has shone the spotlight on colonial-era crimes across the world. But Prime Minister Scott Morrison has reignited the history wars with his spurious claim that “there was no slavery in Australia”.
Australian universities are in crisis. Under pressure to corporatise, they have become over-dependent on income from overseas students. The pandemic has exposed the fatal flaws in this model, sparking fresh debate. The outcome is critical to the culture of society … Continue reading
With international travel at a standstill, arts organisations are grappling with the dilemma of future programming. There is no lack of local work to showcase – but what about international connections?
The collapse of Sydney arts and entertainment centre Carriageworks has sent tremors through the besieged arts sector; but it also shows up the deep flaws in the NSW Government’s cultural policy, and is fuelling demands to halt its disastrous $1.5 … Continue reading
There can be no question that the arts have taken an enormous hit in the pandemic. Token support from governments is not the answer. The crisis requires not only a bailout, but a re-examination of cultural policies in the digital … Continue reading
The latest round of The Australia Council funding, announced on 3 April, marks a new level of government interference in the arts. The council was never meant to police the arts on behalf of government, but under the Coalition that … Continue reading
As the Federal Government rolls out one bailout package after another, the arts is being ignored. ‘Culture Heist’ author Judith White argues that saving the arts is integral to saving the nation.
In the panic over the coronavirus, arts organisation are pleading for support as performances and festivals are cancelled, museums and galleries close and whole areas of the country are threatened with lockdown.
In 1972 Gough Whitlam’s election campaign promised “to promote a standard of excellence in the arts, to widen access to, and the understanding and application of, the arts in the community generally, to help establish and express an Australian identity … Continue reading
Arm’s length funding of the arts is the hallmark of a government attempting to work in the interests of the people. It prevents the arts being used as a political football, and together with peer assessment fosters the development of … Continue reading
Buoyed by the re-election of the NSW Berejiklian Government in March, Minister for the Arts Don Harwin is ploughing ahead with the controversial move of the Powerhouse Museum from Ultimo to Parramatta. He has at last responded to the painstaking, … Continue reading
The Federal election on Saturday 18 May has profound implications for culture, heritage and the arts – and voters would be well advised to take heed of what is happening in NSW.
The NSW Coalition Government has breached its own Treasury guidelines and governance of the arts and culture sector needs a complete review, according to the final report of the Upper House Inquiry into Museums and Galleries.
When Brazil’s Museu Nacional in Rio de Janeiro burned down on 2 September, staff described it as “a tragedy foretold”. For years, successive governments had cut recurrent funding for the museum, whose collection of 20 million priceless and irreplaceable objects … Continue reading
Truth telling was the theme of this year’s Garma festival, held in northeast Arnhemland on the first weekend of August. It’s also a crucial element in the Statement from the Heart made by the indigenous National Constitutional Convention at Uluru … Continue reading
The NSW Coalition government has allocated $244m towards a major new building at the state Art Gallery. But questions are being raised about its ongoing funding and its mission as a public institution.
Writing a book is a solitary occupation, but with this one I’ve been constantly aware of the hosts of people – staff, members, volunteers, benefactors – who are concerned about what is happening to our public institutions. And they are … Continue reading