Opportunities for creators throughout their careers

August 3, 2016 | Cultural Fund

The Copyright Agency’s Career Fund changed this year, with the development of two strands of funding, the Ignite and Create Career Funds

The Ignite fund is for emerging creators and the Create fund is for established creators.

The Create Career Fund received 132 applications in its inaugural June round. All three judges were impressed with the calibre of applicants with many very established authors and artists putting forward ideas for exciting and in some cases, unexpected, creative projects.

Richard Smart and Simon Cooper. Photo: Pat Stockley

Richard Smart and Simon Cooper. Photo: Pat Stockley

Retired publisher Richard Smart and artist and Head of Studies at the National Art School, Simon Cooper, who were doing their final stints as judges after four and five years respectively, said the standard of applications received made it very difficult for the judges to select the winners.

Richard said, “Applicants should carefully consider whether they fit into the Create or Ignite fund because the Create fund really is for mid-career creators. For authors, five to six significant published works is a must – we’re seeing some creators applying too soon.

Poet Jill Jones, who is the most recent judge to the Career Fund, said the new Create Fund is vital, “There’s a myth that if someone’s been published, they are set up. But the reality is, it’s still really difficult for writers to make a living.”

Simon said they’re looking for innovation, “What we really want to see is someone established coming up with a really new idea – something that will build on their body of work and that we can see will have an impact. It’s a great privilege to have been able to help artists. A lot of thinking and consideration goes into the judging.”

Richard added, “We do it because it’s fun, and we might see the realisation of a work that might not otherwise have come to light.”

Jill said it was great to work with Richard and Simon. “I’m a writer so I come at it from that perspective, while they bring their arts and publisher skills – between us we have a robust discussion to come to a happy consensus.”

The judges selected four  diverse winners: author Bruce Pascoe ($15,000) for a pair of novels, artist Angela Valamanesh ($15,000) for an artist in residence with Adelaide University’s Rare Books and Special Collections, author Paddy O’Reilly ($10,000) to complete her novel The White Line, and playwright Daniel Keene ($10,000) to produce two theatrical works which will be translated for Editions Theatrales in Paris. Details of the winners can be found here.

Cultural Fund Manager Zoë Rodriguez said, “I’d like to thank both Richard and Simon for their generous and thoughtful contributions over their years of working with the Career Fund. They have provided great direction as the Career Fund has developed into its two streams and have always shown impartiality and a close eye to what the impact of funding will be as they review applications.”

Judges to replace Simon and Richard will be announced soon. For open for entry dates, click here.