It doesn’t take a censor to silence an artist — a sufficiently opaque and discretionary funding body can achieve the same effect. The Australia Council Review, which has grown out of the Cultural Policy Review initiated by Arts Minister Simon Crean, is doing an excellent job of illustrating this principle.
Since the Cultural Policy Review was launched last year, Crikey‘s Ben Eltham has been shining a light on the fate of artists and arts bodies that fall foul of the Australia Council’s whims. His is a lonely voice; few of his sources are willing to go on the record in support of his claims. But there’s plenty of applause from “Anonymous”.