VINCENT will become the “Art Capital of WA” under a new council plan that will banish stuffy old policies and red tape.
The plan aims to make “art a part of the day-to-day operations of the city’s administration across all functions” and will include more affordable artist spaces and studios through the town, more funding for artists, and a better representation of Aboriginal art (particularly the local Wadjuk people) in public murals.
Vincent mayor Emma Cole says a key part of the new plan is they’ll “turn to creative people themselves”, asking artists for direction.
Cr Jimmy Murphy sits on the arts advisory committee, which drove the new plan, and told this week’s meeting “even though this council has traditionally lifted above its weight when it comes to the arts, I believe we can do even better in regards to our support and encouragement of the arts, not only in the public realm but in the day-to-day operations of the city.”
Cr Murphy, a music man in his spare time when not organising festivals, said “I have a strong belief that any investment in art is an investment in ourselves that has many short and long term benefits…beyond the simple economic advantages the arts brings to a city such as increased visitors, improved desirability and subsequent land values, art brings so much more.
“Art can inspire, art can contribute to culture, art can bring people together…art can heal and art can develop community pride.”
He said the new policy, “will be re-setting our course for the arts to be able to sail higher in this city, sailing towards a new goal, for us to become the arts capital of Perth”.
Cr Josh Topelberg, who’s also on the arts committee, says the area’s arty nature “is a big part of the reason why I choose to live in this part of the world. It’s a critical part of what makes Vincent tick in terms of our community, in terms of our business, we are absolutely the centre of creative industries here, not just in terms of art output but in the way people make it into a business and make a living as well, and this is creating a framework for that being able to thrive.”
The policy will go out for comment for 21 days before councillors have a final vote on it.
by DAVID BELL