The Code of Practice for the Professional Australian Visual Arts, Craft and Design Sector (the Code) provides a set of best practice, ethical guidelines for the conduct of business between arts practitioners and arts sector employers in the Australian visual arts sector.
The Code was first published in 2001. While the Code has undergone a number of incremental revisions, so much has changed over the last two decades and this resource is now out-of-date and out-of-step with current legal, social, virtual and economic conditions. A series of recent consultations revealed there was great demand from artists and organisations for a full revision and expansion of the Code in order to provide a timely, trusted, accessible resource and best-practice reference for the contemporary arts sector.
NAVA is currently undertaking a major revision of the Code, working with academic, legal and industry partners as well as consulting widely all over Australia.
The aim is to collaboratively co-author a full draft of a set of principles and an ethical framework for accountability/responsibility of artists and organisations alike to support inclusion and accessibility for artists, arts venues and their audiences.
The overlapping stages of the project intends to allow time for thorough, deliberative and remunerated consultation of draft content and design. Working in partnership with RMIT School of Art to develop strategies to implement the new Code, as well as paying Terri Janke Indigenous Lawyers and Accessible Arts to develop and publish discussion papers on all areas to inform sector-wide consultation which will be done via focus groups, interviews, and a sector wide survey. In addition, full revisions to the existing ‘Fees and Wages Schedule’ will also be updated and expanded to reflect emerging and established practices, underpinned by a validated, comprehensive, ethical framework.
The new Code of Practice, once implemented, will more accurately reflect the contemporary practices and needs of Australian artists and arts workers, and further promote the development of a robust arts ecology that can sustain and support artists’ careers while preparing organisations, institutions and policymakers for working with, and for, artists in financially transparent, culturally competent and ethical ways.