12 Feb 2020

Significant new investment in arts journalism

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The Copyright Agency, in partnership with the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas, today announced funding of $150,000 to support the publication of more arts reviews and criticism in The Australian, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, Brisbane Times and WA Today.

The $150,000 granted to the media companies will enhance and be in addition to the considerable spending by News Corp and Nine on arts and review coverage.

The project will significantly increase the number and range of nationally published reviews and criticism of new Australian books and writing, plays, and art exhibitions.

Copyright Agency CEO Adam Suckling said, “Our job is to support Australian creativity by ensuring that the rights of publishers, writers and visual artists are respected and that they receive fair payment for use of their work.

We are very pleased to partner with the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas, and our national media partners to bring even more arts reviews and criticism to readers across Australia and internationally, which is so important to Australian creativity.”

Judith Neilson Institute executive director Mark Ryan said the initiative reflected the institute’s aim to support quality journalism across the board.

“Coverage of Australia’s arts scene is important, and our support will generate more reviews and criticism, not just for Melbourne and Sydney audiences, but across the country.

“It will also allow these mastheads to hire new critics, which is good news for arts journalists.”

Mr Suckling said: “We are also delighted to work with News Corp and Nine on this initiative. Their publications provide readers with strong national coverage of the arts, which they will build on further with this joint investment in quality arts review and criticism.”

Copyright Agency also supports a wide range of other organisations and publications covering books, writing and journalism including The Guardian Australia, Australian Book Review, Island, Meanjin, Kill Your Darlings, Griffith Review and programs run by the Walkley Foundation.

The grant and investment by Nine will deliver an additional 100 reviews across both The SMH and The Age and feature books, plays and the visual arts from around Australia.

The mastheads will soon begin a search for some ‘critics-in-residence’ for books, visual arts and theatre. These emerging critical voices will add to The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age‘s existing teams of highly-respected critics.

The Australian newspaper investment coupled with the grant will support a weekly column by award-winning poet, editor, critic and academic Sarah Holland-Batt, who will review new books and cover key issues within the writing sector.

This initiative will help foster opportunities for emerging arts writers and critics by offering new perspectives on contemporary Australian works that will spark interest, curiosity and debate in the wider community.

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Main image CC-licensed by Unsplash via Jonas Jacobsson