Australia Council and Samstag Program in cultural partnership
16 December 2009
The University of South Australia’s Samstag Program has become a key partner of the Australia Council for the Arts’ Visual Arts Board, in an innovative cultural collaboration announced on 14 December.
The experimental funding partnership brings together Australia’s national arts funding agency with the University’s prestigious Samstag Program.
Chair of the Visual Arts Board, Professor Ted Snell, reports that from 2010 the Board’s two annual studio residencies at the International Studio and Curatorial Program, New York (ISCP), will be offered to Australian artists in a collaborative partnership with the Samstag Program.
To be known as the Australia Council for the Arts and Anne & Gordon Samstag ISCP Residencies, the partnership is expected to provide a number of benefits to Australian artists, not least in the stipend paid to artists awarded the residency, which will increase to $25,000 per six-month residency.
UniSA Vice Chancellor and President, Professor Peter Høj, has strongly supported the new partnership.
“It creates a wonderful synergy between our nation’s peak cultural organisation, the Australia Council, and the renowned scholarships program created by American artist Gordon Samstag, whose famous bequest through the University of South Australia ranks as the greatest philanthropic gift made expressly for the development and education of Australian visual artists,” Professor Høj said.
“Gordon Samstag – himself a born-and-bred New Yorker – was known to revere New York as a preferred destination for his Samstag Scholars, and so the ISCP New York studio residencies offer a remarkably good fit for the University’s Samstag Program, in fulfilling Mr Samstag’s generous vision.”
Recipients of Australia Council for the Arts and Anne & Gordon Samstag ISCP Residencies will also have formal status as ‘Samstag Scholars’, a distinction widely prized by the Samstag alumni for its valuable professional cachet.
“This important funding partnership will create new opportunities for Australian artists, and of course allow the Visual Arts Board, working with the Samstag Program, to invest more funds in our vital overseas studio program,” said Professor Snell.
“Residencies like these are important stepping stones in the goal of the Australia Council to help artists build well developed and sustainable careers.”
Australia Council for the Arts and Anne & Gordon Samstag ISCP Residencies are open to practising visual artists, craftspeople, designers and media artists. The ISCP Residency grants will be administered through the Visual Arts Board.
Further information on the residencies and application details will be available from January 2010 on both the Australia Council and Samstag Program websites.