ARTS FUTURES

ARTS FUTURES

We live in an interconnected world undergoing profound disruption.

How do emerging challenges and opportunities across industries and society impact – or have the potential to impact – artists and creatives?

Arts Futures brings together a body of activity exploring the evolving environment for the arts and society. Arts Futures activities draw on knowledge that looks to the past and learns from the present, to understand and imagine possible futures.

Blockchain for creative businesses

How is blockchain being used in the creative industries, and can it change your life?


The first event in AFTRS’ new professional development seminar series – Short, Sharp and Immediately Useful – will give you all the need-to-know info on blockchain, and how it may help you. This event is co-presented with Screen Australia and the Australia Council for the Arts.

Date: 27 February 2020

Time: 2pm-5:30pm

Everybody can be creative: Tina Seelig

Join Stanford University professor and bestselling author Tina Seelig when she shares insights from her work on creativity and offers practical tools to bring our ideas to life.

Date: 18 March 2020
Time: 6:30pm-7:30pm


Creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship are not magical qualities of the lucky few; nor are they inborn traits such as eye and hair colour. Instead they are skills that can be learned and honed.

In her book, Creativity Rules: Get Ideas Out of Your Head and into The World, Stanford University professor and bestselling author Tina Seelig describes a four-step process she calls “the invention cycle”. From imagination to innovation, Seelig postulates that in learning to unlock this pathway, any one of us can gain the power of creativity.

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The Space in Between - Vivid Ideas

To develop the conversation, the Australia Council for the Arts hosted, The Space in Between, a discussion on the future of creativity and the arts, as part of Vivid Ideas.

Speaking at the event at Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Arts on Wednesday, Australia Council CEO Adrian Collette AM called for greater investment in culture and creativity.

“Artists continue to explore new terrain, testing the fluidity and diminishing boundaries of future practice.  There is an increasing trend for artists to undertake creative work in more than one art form. More than half have been seriously involved at some point in their career in an art form other than their principal artistic occupation.”

Streams and themes

Arts Futures are being imagined in multiple ways

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Designing Futures

Artists, creatives and future thinkers across industries came together to collectively navigate the socially and ethically complex web emerging from globally disruptive technologies.

The Australia Council’s Designing Futures event in June 2018 brought together participants from a variety of industries including arts, science, medicine, business, education, technology and law.  

Working in interdisciplinary teams, participants used a design thinking process to explore how change and disruption might be navigated, and what role the arts and artists could play in possible futures. 

What we know

  • In times of change it is important to explore new ways of working and thinking.
  • We need to negotiate a shared understanding and language through bringing together diverse people, industries and perspectives.
  • The arts are one part of a complex web. Exploring intersections and sharing multiple viewpoints will enable us to identify common challenges and develop creative solutions.
  • With complex and rapidly changing forces impacting artists’ livelihoods, the underlying principle that artists create work that has value must be championed.

The Arts Futures activity will be a conduit for connecting people and ideas. It will develop a body of evidence to inform decision making, policy and advocacy and highlight opportunities for new partnerships and investment.

Why Arts Futures is important for the Council

Knowledge leadership is a vital component of our national leadership role championing Australian arts. We want to create conversations, and knowledge generation and sharing on the future of the arts and creativity across society.

We don’t have all the answers. We want to share our thinking as it develops, and work with others to develop new knowledge and shape future directions.

We believe that the arts and culture sectors can gain strength through their intersections with, and embeddedness in, other industries and sectors.

The Arts Futures activity will be a conduit for connecting people and ideas. It will develop a body of evidence to inform decision making, policy and advocacy and highlight opportunities for new partnerships and investment.

Coming soon