Photo by Amauri Mejia on Unsplash

Podcast: Unmuting the muses

18 September 2020

On this episode, we’re joined by Kim Cunio, Denise Ferris, and Clive Barstow to discuss the value of Australia’s arts sector and what policymakers can do to support artists in their time of need.

They are the people society turns to in times of crisis to provide an entertaining distraction or salve, but the coronavirus crisis has left many in Australia’s already vulnerable arts sector on the brink. So what can policymakers do to ensure Australian artists are appropriately valued? How can the sector reorganise to give itself the most effective possible political voice? And does Australia need a Chief Artist as well as a Chief Scientist? On this episode of Policy Forum Pod, Professor Denise Ferris, Associate Professor Kim Cunio, and Professor Clive Barstow chat about arts policy in Australia and the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the sector.

Associate Professor Kim Cunio researches composition and musicology in the School of Music of The Australian National University. He is an accomplished researching composer and performer and was awarded an ABC Golden Manuscript Award in recognition of his work with traditional music.

Professor Clive Barstow is Executive Dean of Arts and Humanities at Edith Cowan University, Honorary Professor of Art at the University of Shanghai Science and Technology China, Honorary Professor of Design at Guangdong Baiyun University China, and global faculty member of Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey.

Professor Denise Ferris is Head of the School of Art and Design at The Australian National University. She has been in this position at ANU since 2013, where she has lectured in photography since 1987. Professor Ferris is also Chair of the Australian Council of University Art & Design Schools (ACUADS), the peak body representing over thirty Australian universities in visual arts, craft and design. Denise is a photographer who uses ultraviolet processes and inkjet technologies, exploring the photograph as a non-documentary archive.

Policy Forum Pod is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Subscribe on Android or wherever you get your podcasts. We’d love to hear your feedback for this podcast series! Send in your questions, comments, or suggestions for future episodes to You can also Tweet us @APPSPolicyForum or join us on the Facebook group.

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