Artist Self-Organisation

Working with First Nations Art Centres

Summary of Good Practice Recommendations

Organisations have a responsibility to:

  • do research before approaching an Art Centre with a request and understand why the organisation wants to work with the Art Centre 

  • recognise that Art Centres across the country have different ways of doing business and different decision-making processes that adhere to the cultural protocols of their community  

  • invest time and effort to build genuine working relationships with the Art Centre 

  • work with realistic time expectations for proposals or outcomes, recognising that Art Centres are usually under resourced and have limited capacities 

  • ensure there is sufficient lead-in time for the Art Centre to consider a request 

  • ensure there is a flexible budget, including fees to cover the Art Centre’s time to provide advice, consult and obtain permissions from relevant parties  

  • consider how the project will promote and benefit Art Centres and ensure Art Centre's have decision-making input into projects

Art Centres have a responsibility to:

  • meet cultural and administrative obligations to Art Centre board members, artists and community members 

  • protect and maintain the cultural and artistic practice and vision of the Art Centre, which extends to assessing any engagements or work with third parties 

  • ensure time and resources are spent on collaborations or engagements that reflect well on and further the objectives of the Art Centre 

  • ensure economic benefits are flowing back to the Art Centre artists

Agreements should outline: 

  • all terms and conditions 

  • expectations and responsibilities of each party

  • fees payable to the Art Centre

  • timelines for deliveries or outcomes

  • translation or access arrangements if required