The Copyright Agency awarded an unprecedented $160,000 for its Author Fellowship and four Publishing Fellowships, along with two NAVA Visual Arts Fellowships at the inaugural Copyright Agency | Viscopy annual showcase in Sydney tonight.

“This year’s fellowship announcement will award a record $160,000 providing crucial financial support for the pursuit of creative excellence and innovation in Australia’s literary and arts communities,” said Copyright Agency CEO, Adam Suckling.

This year, the Author Fellowship for mid-to-late authors has doubled from $40,000 to $80,000 making it one of Australia’s richest fellowships’ for writers. The assessors for the Author Fellowship considered applications from across the country and after a lengthy deliberation agreed on a shortlist of three of the nation’s top writers at the top of their literary powers.

The 2016 Author Fellowship was awarded to Melissa Lucashenko in support of her next powerful story Too Much Lip that aims to look at modern Aboriginal life in the bush and address intergenerational trauma in an honest and hopeful way.

 

The 2016 Author Fellowship was awarded to Melissa Lucashenko. Photo: Tim Levy.

The 2016 Author Fellowship was awarded to Melissa Lucashenko. Photo: Tim Levy.

“The calibre of this year’s entries reflected the extraordinary talent of Australian authors in writing some of the very best international literature available today,” Mr Adam Suckling said.

“As we know, Australian readers love Australian stories, but the average income of an author in Australia is a paltry $13,000 – an almost 50 percent decline since 2001. This led to the Copyright Agency doubling the Fellowship’s value in recognition of the time and effort that is required by authors to
produce high-quality Australian stories that challenge and touch us,” Mr Suckling adds.

The Copyright Agency also awarded a total of $40,000 to four Publisher Fellows to fund vital research into the newest digital publishing trends and emerging business models and technologies internationally. This vital research will provide a new wave of insights into the specific field of each recipient and will enhance the broader Australian publishing industry.

Recipients of the Publisher Fellowships included:

  • Bradley Gaylard (Creative Director at Firefly Education) to review innovations in education
    publishing to develop export markets in primary education.
  • Louise Cornege (Allen & Unwin) to review the latest global trends, strategies and technologies in
    digital publicity and marketing campaigns for adult, children, illustrated, audio and e-books.
  • Mary Coe (Sole Proprietor at Indexing Services) to review design improvements for indexes in
    ebooks.
  • Alexandra Payne (UQP) to research the new wave of digital disruption in the UK and headed
    towards Australian publishing.

The Publishing Fellowships are important in keeping the publishing industry thriving. All fellows will submit reports on their findings that will be made available to the broader publishing industry, and will participate in a panel session hosted by the Copyright Agency in June 2017.
“This is the only funding of its kind, specifically aimed at supporting Australian publishers to build deep knowledge in the digital space, and assist them in sustaining and strengthening the Australian publishing industry now and into the future,” adds Mr. Suckling.

This year, the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA), the national peak body for the visual and media arts, craft and design sector, supported by the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund, created two new Fellowships to assist exceptional mid-career Australian artists.

The recipients of the NAVA Visual Arts Fellowships, totaled $40,000, and were awarded to:

  • Sydney-based Mikala Dwyer to realise her major solo exhibition at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW) in August 2017, and present work internationally having been invited by the new Foundation Fiminco in Paris to participate in exhibition Triple Point of Matter.
  • Adelaide-based Michelle Nikou will utilise the fellowship to develop a new body of work and skills through a self-initiated program of professional development and research at the Lombok village of Sukarara, Indonesia. She will be learning traditional techniques of weaving incorporating natural dyes and materials.

The Copyright Agency’s Fellowship programs now provide unprecedented financial support to authors, publishers and visual artists in recognition of their creative endeavors that enrich and promotes Australia’s literary and arts communities. This is in addition to the payment of more than $100 million in copyright licence fess to publishers, writers, visual artists and surveyors every year.

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Jane Morey or Zoe Warden at info@moreymedia.com.au or 02 9929 9922