#VoteForArt Campaign Update

NAVA is busy meeting with candidates, speaking to media, appearing on panel discussions, and speaking to artists, arts workers and audiences to promote our #VoteForArt campaign and put arts and culture back on the political agenda.

Panelists for Breaking the pattern of policy neglect for the arts at The Paint Factory in Yeronga, Brisbane, 11 May 2022. L-R: Bec Mac, Gordon Hookey (Waanyi), Pat Hoffie AM, Penelope Benton, Paul Osuch, and Carmel Haugh. Photo by Johnathan Oldham.
ID: Photo of six panelists seated in front of an audience in an arts space.

#VoteForArt Pledge

Thank you to the 500 of you (and counting!) who took the pledge to support candidates with a bold vision for arts and culture. This has been an important advocacy tool when engaging with politicians about the issues that are important to visual artists, arts workers and audiences.

If you haven’t already take the pledge and help us communicate voter support for the arts.

Meeting with candidates

NAVA invited federal election candidates across Australia to discuss their future plans for arts and culture, and brief them on our key election priorities. NAVA’s Executive Director Penelope Benton has met with several candidates, with more meetings scheduled. 

One of the key takeaways from both the meetings to date, as well as the many who have responded with requests for meetings before or after the election, is that there are a remarkable number of election candidates who deeply care about the arts and are concerned for the future of our sector. Each candidate we have met with or heard from is either an artist or practitioner themselves, has friends or family who are artists, arts workers or academics, and/or has shared pictures and stories about artworks in their homes, offices, or made by their children at school. Others have discussed the benefits of the arts on their own mental health. 

The election is the perfect time to meet local candidates to discuss the needs of our sector, especially with so many making time to engage their local communities through door knocking, local forums and pre-polling stations. Importantly, when responding to NAVA’s key policy priorities, many acknowledged that our recommendations all make sense and are part of the change they would like to see in our next government. 

Breaking the pattern of policy neglect for the arts

Presented in partnership with Fund the Arts and The Paint Factory, NAVA hosted a panel discussion on Wednesday last night in the Moreton Electorate. Breaking the pattern of policy neglect for the arts was a vital opportunity for the visual arts sector to discuss how Australians would benefit from ambitious visual arts and craft experiences made possible through strategic policy and funding investment, and invite all local federal election candidates to articulate their vision for arts and culture.

NAVA’s Penelope Benton was joined by artist Gordon Hookey (Waanyi), Pat Hoffie AM artist and Professor Emeritus, Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Paul Osuch Founder and CEO of Anywhere Festival, Carmel Haugh, Program Director Chrysalis Projects and host POPSART's Bec Mac. NAVA thanks both Graham Perrett (ALP) and Claire A Garton (Greens) for taking the time to come along, and to listen and share their views. The key takeaways from the panel were the vital need for arts and culture to be taken seriously and that a National Cultural Plan is what’s needed as a starting point to collaboratively imagine new possibilities.

For those unable to attend, an audio recording of the event will be made available on our website soon.

Federal Election Report Card

NAVA will be publishing a 2022 Federal Election Report Card early next week measuring each of the major political parties' policy statements against NAVA's five policy priorities, as well as tips for researching independent candidates in your electorate. The Report Card will help voters distinguish which parties and candidates support a thriving visual arts sector. 

NAVA is an independent, non-partisan organisation and our Report Card will provide an objective and transparent measurement of where the major parties and candidates stand on the important issues concerning the visual arts, craft and design sector. Coming soon!

On Sunday 1 May 2022 NAVA ran a stall at the CUT N POLISH: Artist Car Boot Sale at Carriageworks, a one-day event featuring over 60 artists and collectives from Greater Sydney. The stall was a great opportunity to connect with thousands of artists and art lovers, and have conversations about NAVA’s #VoteForArt Federal Election campaign. NAVA staff handed out #VoteForArt badges and asked visitors to take the pledge to vote for candidates who will support bold action for a thriving visual arts sector. Over 100 voters added their names to the pledge that day. We also gained new NAVA Members and discussed NAVA’s Code of Practice and advocacy work.

It was a high-energy day with a huge turnout, filled with meaningful conversations and encounters with the local arts community.

Get involved

Let’s make sure that all candidates commit to investing in Australia’s creative future. The more of us there are, the stronger we can be. 

  1. Take the pledge
  2. Share our campaign with your networks and on social media
  3. Contact your MP and candidates


Download the following social media posts and banners. Feel free to add why support for the arts is essential for your vote. Remember to tag your local candidates and NAVA in your posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn.