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Closure of Tas Regional Arts to Hit Rural and Regional Communities

Andrea Dawkins

Andrea Dawkins  -  Thursday, 12 January 2017

Tags: Arts, Regional Tasmania

Andrea Dawkins MP | Greens' Arts spokesperson

After 70 years of supporting regional artists and community organisations, Tas Regional Arts are being forced to close their doors because their funding was cut by the State Government.

This move will hit hard in rural and regional communities, where access to important creative opportunities can be limited.

Tas Regional Arts’ committed, mostly volunteer team, did their best to try to keep the organisation running, but can’t continue without government support.  The Liberals’ must reconsider the funding cut, as a matter of urgency.

The imminent closure of Tas Regional Arts is heartbreaking.  The government’s decision to axe their funding will be debilitating for many home-grown and developing artists.

This won’t just hit one arts organisation. The forced closure will be a serious blow to the many individuals and community organisations who receive funding from Tas Regional Arts.

It may spell the end for some regional community groups, and the exhibitions, performances and workshops they have organised in the past.

It's thanks to Tas Regional Arts that many iconic Tasmanian projects eventuated.  They wouldn't have been possible without their financial and network support.

The successful Junction Arts Festival was born from a Regional Arts Australia conference in Launceston.  Without Tas Regional Arts, Junction may not have seen the light of day.

The closure of Tas Regional Arts is a step backwards.  It exposes the Hodgman Government’s inability to understand the importance of creativity within the community.

Many regional centres are reinvigorated and connected through the arts.  It’s those communities the Liberals are deserting if they don’t reverse the cut to Tas Regional Arts.