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Ben Eltham —

Ben Eltham

Crikey arts commentator


Labor’s arts policy brings passion, vision to election — finally

June 6, 2016 9 Comments

Labor's arts policy is largely a repair job, but Shorten's passion for it harks back to the grander visions of Labor greats like Gough Whitlam.

‘Devastating’ OzCo grants just the tip of the iceberg

May 23, 2016 7 Comments

The Australia Council budget cuts are even worse than they seem. And the worst is yet to come.

Catalyst funding blows out by $12m as OzCo applicants sweat

May 12, 2016 2 Comments

The Catalyst funding scheme has blown out its budget in one big hit, giving money to large organisations (which is against its remit). Meanwhile smaller organisations wait for Australia Council grants to be announced.

Turnbull govt leaves arts in a sling, locking in Abbott-era cuts

May 4, 2016 1 Comment

The significant level of austerity imposed on our cultural institutions was confirmed in last night's budget.

Qld arts company collapse leaves funding and projects in limbo

April 28, 2016 1 Comment

Artslink Queensland has gone into voluntary administration, leaving those artists and projects depending on the company in limbo.

Arts sector’s worst nightmare comes true with Catalyst a smokescreen for pork

April 18, 2016 1 Comment

When the National Program for Excellence in the Arts -- now Catalyst -- was announced, many feared it would become nothing more than pork barrelling for favoured projects. They were right.

Are Sydney’s lockout laws killing nightlife or saving lives? Yes.

February 24, 2016 7 Comments

Proponents of the lockout laws say they are keeping Sydneysiders safe. Opponents say they are killing a vital part of Australia's cultural scene. Unfortunately they are both right.

Massive arts grant highlights the rift between the haves, have-nots

February 10, 2016

Arts industry figures have been gobsmacked at just how much money is being distributed to a commercial gallery.

Sydney Uni and the corporatisation of education

February 4, 2016 4 Comments

The University of Sydney has reduced the number of positions on its governing board. Is this a worrying trend of less democracy in education?

The curious case of the missing $8 million: OzCo and Arts at loggerheads

January 22, 2016 7 Comments

The top bureaucrat in the Arts Ministry and the boss of the Australia Council are at odds over Mitch Fifields’s Catalyst program. Who’s right?