19 Jan

Sydney Festival Boycott Arts Organisations Accept Donations

The Sydney Festival opens today under the shadow of a cloud. A number of artists and art organizations have pulled out of the festival because of the Israeli Embassy’s support of the dance piece Deca dance, created by Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin.

The thing that is most interesting the amount of sponsorship being discuss. The amount of $20,000 is not much in comparison to the overall budget of the festival. What was the reason, then, that the festival sign the agreement on funding for Deca dance in light of the budget size and the possibility of community reactions?

It’s true that it’s common to have a festival that invites the participation of an artist from a different nation, to the nation of origin to provide financial assistance for the project. They do this as they believe that there is the benefits of their culture being showcase globally.

Some critics have pointed out that this particular financing arrangement serves to art wash the Israeli regime’s violent control over the lives of Palestinians. This isn’t an isolated event, but is part of a larger debate about sources of funding for the arts. If an arts organization accepts donations from donors, there’s always a cost to paid. It’s all about how much.

Does A Donation Have To Be Free?

Sometimes, arts organizations show some strange lack of confidence when they ask for or receiving donations. It’s like the donation is worth more than its actual value. Sure, the government funders and other bodies like Creative Partnerships Australia provide rewards like matched funding to arts organizations in exchange for private donations.

Additionally it is the norm for government that art organizations must seek external funders in order to justify government funding. A minister for the arts in recent times, George Brandis, threatened in 2014 that if organizations for the arts or artists refused private donations, they would be barre from receiving grants from the government.

However the person who is the donor of the money, in this case, that is the Israeli Embassy, claims it’s not about politics. Culture is a bridge that can lead to cooperation, coexistence and harmony, and must kept outside the realm of politics. Are there ever free donations? We can also separate the giver from their brand or previous actions?

Protests Held In The Past Against Arts Festival Sponsorship

There was a furore at this year’s Sydney Biennale about an art sponsor, Transfield, and its association with offshore asylum seeker processing centers. This did not go well for either of the parties, both parties suffering from bad press, and then breaking off ties.

In December 2021, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York finally removed the Sackler name from its seven exhibition spaces, due to their family’s involvement in the production of the drug at the center of the US opioid crisis, OxyContin. The museum’s board seemed to take this decision with a sigh. And thanked them for their kind donations, despite the chaos caused by their substance.

It was report that the Fringe World festival in Perth was the subject of a protest in 2020 over. Signing a huge sponsorship deal with the fossil energy giant Woodside after which it later in the same year. Requiring that performers not do any act or omit to do any act. That would prejudice any of Fringe World’s sponsorship arrangements.

Artists Put In A Challenging Situation Festival

Artists are constantly searching for funds to create their work. But it is the art world that stood and retracted their labor in this year’s Sydney Biennale. The artists protested against the sponsorship of Fringe World. Fringe World festival, and it is again the artists protesting and removing their participation in 2022’s Sydney Festival.

When artists speak out against the funding sources for their work They are usually portray as brats. Who are ungrateful rather than those who stand in support of their beliefs

Artists are among the poorest members of our society, yet they are willing to sacrifice. Their income in order to help fellow artists from other nations such as Palestine. This is not intend to be an attack on artists from Israel such as the dancers. Who are part of Deca dance and the like, but rather a criticism of their government.

Arts organizations aren’t separate from politics or life. Arts and cultural practices in general aren’t free of any political affiliation or connections. Countries around the globe utilize culture and the arts to express. Their opinions or project an image that is more positive of their cultural practices.

It’s real that, as the Israeli Embassy has stated that culture and the arts. Serve as a bridge to build greater understanding of culture. However, the protesters will argue that cultural or artistic practices can be used to promote. The agenda of a cultural or political organization which is why the accusations that they are art washing.