Image: Giselle Stanborough, Cinopticon, Carriageworks. Photo by Mark Pokorny 2020.

It takes time to create a work. Hours. Months. Years. 

Years of learning, training, honing, critiquing, getting by and making do, losing and finding, finishing and starting over and then starting over again. 

To draw on instincts so patiently and impatiently developed – until, one day, you suddenly discover that it’s instinct that you’re applying, that your hands have their own memory, that craft is a vocabulary and composition a grammar. 

Time has shifted, and the work that you’ve created – which only a moment ago, did not exist – now looks toward a new future, because nobody has experienced it yet but you.

And when somebody does encounter it, it won’t be that sense of long time or deep practice that they experience, but the new set of associations that the work has set into being just for them. A new forward momentum of new recollections and new imaginings. A moment in time that creates countless others. 

Your work has created a new future. 

Let’s reset the entire approach we’ve been taking to all of this COVID19 business right now.

Australia’s creative industries are massive in dollars – $111.7bn – and share of the total economy – 6.5% – and employment – 50,000 professional artists and 600,000 artsworkers – but you know what’s even more significant than that?

A single work of art. 

If art creates the future, and politics is the art of the possible, then politicians have the fundamental duty to create Australia’s future. 

Your work creates Australia’s future. That’s what you do.

Wouldn’t you expect the very same of the people you elect?

This month, we’ve got a few opportunities to focus our voices on what comes next as we reset Australia – beyond any ‘new normal’ and towards a truly better place:

  • To develop some kickarse advocacy skills together, we’ve launched the NAVA Advocacy Program. It’s weekly, it’s free, and there’s quite an impressive line-up – join us?
  • The Advocacy Program trains us up so that we’re all ready for Arts Day on the Hill on Wednesday 12 August – pop it into your calendar now, and expect to hear a lot more from us about it!
  • The Senate has opened an inquiry into the Australian Government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Submissions close on Thursday 28 May and here’s all you need to know about contributing.

Let’s recognise this as an incredible opportunity for real change.

We need to make the most of it.

Let’s lead the way.