The Australia Council for the Arts are working to establish a National Indigenous Arts and Cultural Authority (NIACA), to assist Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists in maintaining their creative expressions in all kinds of art through governance and legal framework.
The First Nations arts and cultural sector has identified a significant gap in existing structures and is working towards agreement to create a NIACA. A NIACA would provide a much needed central peak body for the Indigenous arts and cultural sector, providing First Nations artists and cultural organisations with a national voice across all areas of practice.
A NIACA would also acknowledge and assist with the ongoing responsibilities and obligations for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to maintain, control, protect and nurture this inheritance and its contemporary creative expressions.
The idea to launch a NIACA originated in the 1970s, but recently the idea has re-emerged through the Australia Council for the Arts, who are holding consultation forums around the nation to undertake research on what the authority should look like.
The Australia Council has committed to providing interim secretariat support to the First Nations arts sector, including the facilitation of a national consultation process, to assist with the development of a NIACA. This is in line with the Council’s commitment to support the excellence of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts, strengthen Australia’s First Nations arts and cultural ecosystem and increase audiences for First Nations arts and culture at home and abroad.
There are a number of ways you can provide input through the consultation process. They include:
- writing a submission in response to the discussion paper
- completing the online survey
- attending one of the First Nations consultation forums
The input through this consultation will feed into a national gathering on First Nations arts and culture in the second half of 2019.