I have been lurking for a while so should introduce myself. I am an
Australian new media artists and curator - most recently co-director of the
Electrofringe - a festival of digital, electronic and new media arts aimed
at young and emerging artists to further explore technology and its
creative possibilities which takes place annually in Newcastle NSW.
I thought people might be interested in the current developments in
Australia on the issue of defining New Media.
In a shock decision on Tues Dec 8, the national arts funding body, The
Australia Council, dissolved the New Media Arts Board which has been
responsible for funding a huge amount of innovative work and allowed
Australian new media artists to develop a significant international profile.
Several key organisations, festivals and individual projects are funded by
this body. Instead an Inter - Arts office is to be established which will
deal with hybrid projects and "triage" digital and electronic media works to
the Visual Arts and Music Boards.
For full official press release
As you can imagine the ramifications of this are massive depending on how/if
the Visual Arts and Music Boards are re-organised in order to deal with this
area of practice.
Opinion within in the community is mixed ranging from outrage to those
academic optimists that believe it now means new media has become
legitimised as part of visual art and no longer needs to be assisted by it's
Personally I cannot see how this action will not be devastating for the new
media arts scene. I cannot see how this restructuring will be able to be
set into motion without significant the sacrifices, particularly for events
such as Electrofringe which operate on a project grant basis. Continuity
There has been an excellent response by Keith Gallasch - managing editor
RealTime Magazine - Australia's largest contemporary arts publication that
can be found at http://www.realtimearts.net
I would be very interested in responses from the international new media
arts community on this issue.
Electrofringe Co-director 2003/2004
RealTime Associate Editor
sound - text - graphic