Support for Australian creators with the early release of grants to organisations

July 8, 2020

The Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund has announced the recipients of its second and final round of funding for organisations, four months early in response to the devastating impact of the COVID-19 crisis on Australian writers and visual artists.

The philanthropic arm of the Copyright Agency, the Cultural Fund has approved 21 grants in Round Two totalling $342,776. In addition, the final tranche of the Emergency Action Funding totalling $85,700 was allocated, taking the total funding to $428,476.

Copyright Agency CEO Adam Suckling says, “The decision to bring forward this funding round by four months is designed to assist Australian writers and artists with financial support and encouragement to enable them to continue their work and support them in these challenging times.”

The Copyright Agency is focused on supporting opportunities for writers and visual artists at all career stages and from many backgrounds through the Cultural Fund. The fund offers grants to leading organisations for projects that support Australian writers, journalists, editors, English and literary teachers, visual artists and key industry stakeholders in writing, publishing, education and visual arts sectors.

“The applications we received were exceptional, and we are excited to be supporting the work of our diverse and incredibly talented Australian writers and visual artists. We are pleased to be supporting a further nine organisations as funding is the most beneficial contribution we can make to Australian creators now,” Mr Suckling said.

Key areas of support for this funding include opportunities for new and diverse writers and artists, as well as creating and supporting new publishing projects. Recipients include:

  • WestWords, to receive $60,000 over a three-year period for its project, Western Sydney Emerging Writers’ Fellowships.
  • Curious Works, to receive $9,700 for its collaborative theatre project, Everything is Fine Writer Development Program. Through comedy and storytelling, young Western Sydney artists will share their perspectives and experiences with mental health.
  • Goolarri Media, granted $15,000 to assist with the mentoring of 10 emerging performance writers at various stages of development.
  • The Guardian Australia, to receive $20,000 for its weekly reviews of Australian books, while the Sydney Review of Books online magazine is one of the few organisations to have successfully secured $75,000 over a three-year period, to provide literary criticism of Australian books.

Copyright Agency has supported a number of literary journals, including Island magazine, Cosmos magazine, Kill Your Darlings and Southerly Journal, to create opportunities for writers to be paid and have their work published.

Importantly, the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund will support leading Awards, prizes and exhibitions to ensure work by our Australian writers and visual artists continues to reach new audiences.

Miles Franklin Literary Award will receive $37,500 of funding to provide financial support for the shortlisted authors and promote this significant literary prize that celebrates Australian stories.

Society of Children’s Book Writers and Publishers will receive $18,300 to award three mid-career and emerging illustrators to develop their creative works in children’s literature.

Avant Gaga Pty Ltd has been funded $10,000 for its project, The Poetry Night at Sappho. This monthly poetry event at Sappho Books in Glebe, Sydney promotes the work of established and emerging poets.

National Art School will use its $10,000 in funding to digitise and create a multimedia presentation of three of John Olsen’s journals for major exhibition, covering themes such as mental health.

Malthouse Theatre is to receive $20,000 for the Malthouse Theatre Playwriting Innovation Award, which celebrates the work of outstanding playwrights in making innovative Australian plays.

This year, we are also pleased to support the Children’s Book Council Australia for children’s book creators for Curious Creature at Taronga Zoo; and All That We Are for Artelier Youth, which is a program mentoring aspiring Tasmanian writers, illustrators and graphic artists.

In addition, a grant of $15,000 has been approved for Sydney Contemporary Art Fair to commission Jess Johnson, Simon Ward and the two-person collective Soda Jerk to create works in the digital space. These works will now be presented digitally during this year’s art fair in late October, which will be held online. The funding will help pay commission fees for artists, as well as production and website development costs for Sydney Contemporary 2020.

For more details and a full list of funded projects, head to

Media enquiries

Jane Morey | morey media | e: | m: 0416 097 678

Ella Harris | morey media | e: | m: 0403 090 898

About the Copyright Agency

The not-for-profit Copyright Agency connects users and creators of content, providing licenses for the use of copyright material such as text, images, art and survey plans. We manage the educational and government licenses for the use of text and images, as well as the resale royalty scheme for artists (by Government appointment). Our members include writers, artists, surveyors and publishers. Membership is free.

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