Artsupport Australia: an Innovative Model for Encouraging Private Philanthropy in the Arts

Tuesday, October 20, 9:30 am – 11:00 am

Organized by Diane Ragsdale, associate program officer for the performing arts, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Presented by Louise Walsh, director, Artsupport Australia, an initiative of the Australia Council for the Arts.

Artsupport Australia was established to encourage philanthropy in the arts, particularly among the ~800 Prescribed Private Funds (charitable trusts) that have emerged since 1999 when tax legislation was passed to encourage personal and corporate philanthropy. Since its inception in 2003, it has been responsible for facilitating more than AU$25 million in new philanthropic income for over 100 artists and 500 arts organizations (a significant portion of the sector) and has been instrumental in ensuring that arts and culture is the second highest area of funding (after welfare) by PPFs.

The program provides mentoring to arts organizations and artists and introduces philanthropists and foundations to those with partnership potential, at no charge to either entity. While it is supported with annual funding of approximately AU$650,000 from the Australia Council (a government agency), it operates independently from the Council’s government grantmaking operations. It is a unique public/private partnership and may provide a possible model for encouraging investments in the arts by US family foundations and trusts.

Related Links:

Artsupport Australia