Report

The Art Economies Value Chain reports: Update on Art Centre Finances 2013/14–2014/15

29 Jun 2016
Description

Art Centre finances are recovering: There are signs of a sustained recovery in sales in Art Centres. However, most Art Centres are very small businesses, with limited resources to deal with shocks and change. While around half of all Art Centres trade at a loss, this situation has improved over the last three years; the losses are smaller (and decreasing), and the number of Art Centres that report a profit has grown. There is significant variation between the financial circumstances of each art region, and the situation is characterised by complexity and variability. The funding environment has stabilised: Funding sources, levels and priorities identified in the earlier report remain largely unchanged. With five-year funding now being offered, there is a new level of stability and certainty. Federal and state/territory funding continues to be crucial to the sector. While funding continues to be effective in its scope and scale, funding dependency remains high in many Art Centres. Employment funding and programs are a major feature of Art Centres: Employment funding and arts funding now provide equal amounts of funding for Art Centres. Wages are now the largest single expense for Art Centres, highlighting the competition between art production and employment outcomes. Future directions: Artist payments and art materials purchases are both a declining expense for Art Centres. This potentially points to reduced supply (which may help address declining average prices) but may also highlight future supply issues. The financial situation for art centres varies according to the size of the art centre. Larger art centres are generally financially stable; while small art centres face ongoing challenges by virtue of their small size, they are also relatively stable. However, the middle ground for art centres is becoming larger and, consequently, more competitive.

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Published year only: 
2016
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