I’ve had a lot of interesting and sometimes disconcerting discussions at forums and in foyers about the Australian arts industry. As a lecturer in arts management and organisational psychology I daydreamed about gathering such discussions into a consolidated, easily accessed site to allow them to be shared with not only students, but also others in the arts community. I’m rather excited about this actually happening through the artsinterview.com blog project.
The blog’s development has taken many months, many meetings and many cups of coffee. It has been great to be able to meet with the passionate and inquisitive fellow arts interviewers and ask (and be asked) ‘Who is this blog for?’ ‘What questions do we want to ask?’ ‘How long should the interviews be?’, ’Who would we like to answer those questions?’ ‘What format will work?’ ‘How do we let people know about the project?’ ‘When can we all meet next?’ ‘Who wants another coffee?’, and so many other others.
The result of all of our questioning is a succession of short interviews with diverse Australian arts practitioners (and stakeholders) released every Monday morning (starting next Monday) at artsinterview.com. The interviews are based on what we believe are highly relevant arts management themes such as should the arts act like a business?, all pervasive politics, creative collaboration and many more. Each month we begin a new theme, and each week we ask a new interviewee for their responses to that theme.
We hope that through these interviews we can:
• contribute to personal and organisational reflection
• further discussions about the arts in Australia
• share experiences of working in this field
• offer opportunities to learn from each other
• further strengthen our sense of community across arts platforms, regions and experience levels
We can only speculate whom our blog readers may be at this stage. We imagine that arts workers at every level, from students and volunteer interns, to CEOs and artistic directors, even funding agencies and politicians will find something useful in the interviewees shared personal and professional thoughts and experiences. Though it is intended to be an Australian resource we hope that we can inspire international readers. Even though it is created for the arts industry, we expect others outside of the industry would benefit from a peek too.
A quick thanks
Initially I intended to do the project on my own- in hindsight that seems a bit ridiculous. Thanks to the generosity of a select group of impressive former students I haven’t had to. Our group of four independent, volunteer developers has now expanded to a group of 12 interviewers, editors, designers and marketers. I want to thank all of them for supporting the project and generously offering us their time and talents. Particular thanks goes to our project manager, Kim Goodwin whose management skills and commitment to this project made it happen.
We are, of course, incredibly grateful to our interviewees for their time (which is already in high demand), for their support and, importantly, allowing us to share their thoughts with their current and future colleagues and peers. Thank you.