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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Arts relief takes centre stage

Independent Queensland artists and arts workers impacted by COVID-19 are set to receive financial relief with more than $700,000 in state government stART grants recently awarded.  

Minister for the Arts, Leeanne Enoch said the sector has been impacted around the world by COVID-19.

“Queensland’s continued health response means we have started to deliver our plan for economic recovery,” Ms Enoch said.

“Part of that means supporting jobs, which is why the stART grants program was designed as a rapid-response initiative, to ensure we get our independent arts workers back at work.”

She said the Government had increased stART funding from $500,000 to more than $700,000 to widen support for artists and arts workers.

“stART will fund 213 recipients from all corners of the state for the development of arts and creative projects, producer services, technicians or fees and equipment purchase, supporting a range of jobs within this diverse industry,” said Minister Enoch.

“Developed by Arts Queensland, in close consultation with the local arts sector, the program offered $3000 grants to local independent creative practitioners, whose work has been reduced or ceased due to the pandemic.”

Arts Queensland has engaged 10 delivery partners to distribute the stART grants.

Partners included Regional Arts Services Network providers; Access Community Services through BEMAC, Crossroad Arts, Creative Arts Alliance, Empire Theatre, Red Ridge and Queensland Music Festival, along with Metro Arts, Placemakers* Gold Coast, and JUTE Theatre Company.  

Ms Enoch said that QMusic had ensured statewide music-related applicants would benefit, with 51% of its stART funding shared beyond Brisbane to applicants from the Gold Coast, Central Queensland and as far north as Cape York and the Daintree.

“This delivery partner model is an innovative approach to promoting, assessing and dispersing funding,” the Minister said.

“Partners have ensured this vital funding helps the creative independent sector, across multiple art-forms and communities.

Crossroad Arts Artistic Director, Alison Richardson said the organisation was thrilled with the quality of the applications.

“The high quality and diverse applications prove what a wealth of rich talent we have in regional Queensland, but also demonstrates the very real and immediate need there is to keep our artists, arts workers and creatives employed at such a challenging time,” Ms Richardson said.

“This injection of funds will enable many artists struggling at this time to continue working and creating opportunities not only for themselves but for the communities they reside in.”

For more information on stART and other Arts Queensland grant programs grant visit: arts.qld.gov.au.

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