Snip, Barry, snip!

The new government in Queensland has abandoned its Left literary awards. Last month, blogger boy on a bike looked at arts funding in NSW.

Arts funding – some more info

by Boy on a bike

Arts NSW publishes a spreadsheet each year showing how deep in the trough the luvvies have their snouts. Here’s a few highlights:

The Sydney Writers’ Festival received $417,380. I’m not sure why. The Festival boasts it attracts 80,000 people – is it that hard to charge them an extra five bucks a ticket? Strangely enough, the Festival doesn’t appear to have ever published an annual report, so we can’t see where all the money is coming from and going to. That really annoys me – if an organisation is taking money from the taxpayer, it should be clearly accountable and totally transparent about how it spent the money. If anyone manages to track down one of their reports, please let me know. Antony Beevor attended a few years ago – I would have paid good money to see him speak if I had known he was in town. It’s not like the cost is an issue for me – I’ve already spent about $100 on the hard cover versions of several of his books.

The Performance Space received $667,808. Here’s a snippet of what you can see there at the moment.

I had to get down to page 94 (of 96) to find this $3,000 gem:

A hybrids arts performance where the movements of musicians in a string quartet are triggered by seismic activity via electric muscle stimulation. Seismic data, collected via an online database provided by observatories around the world, is converted to an audio file and used to generate movement in performers using a midi-controlled electric muscle stimulation device so that they involuntarily ‘play’ their instruments. The work questions assumptions about the role of the musicians agency in musical performance and provides a reflective look at both the utility of information and the lack of agency we have with respect to global systems.

Once you’ve read something like that, you realise that the NSW Arts budget should be abolished, the departmental building burned to ashes and the ground upon which it stood sown thickly with salt.

Read on at Boy on a bike


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