Principle 2: Great art and great artists

The concept of excellence is one which draws heated debate. What is excellent art and how does it relate to the process or the outcomes for the artist and participants? We want to avoid the narrow definitions of excellence and talk about the impact that art has, innovation in creative industries, risk taking particularly in emerging artforms and the development of ideas. We want to support great art and great artists as well as the pursuit of greatness.

Central to this is innovation, originality and integrity as well as the development of artists and artforms. The placement of Canberra Region art and artists in the local, national and global context is an essential component of what we need to be doing.

We need to be promoting the art and artists of the ACT within and outside our borders to show that we are a force to be reckoned with in the arts industry.

Case study

Canberra Glassworks is a dynamic, professional working glassworks providing local, national and international contemporary glass artists with access to state-of-the-art equipment and a unique context to explore, develop and realise new Australian work. It is the only arts institution of its type in Australia, completely dedicated to contemporary glass, one of few like it internationally. It is valued by nationally and internationally renowned artists for its sophisticated equipment and facilities which allow them to work collaboratively and to a large scale. Its annual program includes exhibitions, artist access programs and community engagement programs and it provides contemporary glass for sale.

Operating since 2007, it was established as a special initiative of the ACT Government through artsACT. It is a tourist attraction and approximately 50,000 people visit each year to see and engage with artists working throughout the building.

It is housed in the historic Kingston Power House in the developing and visionary Kingston Arts Precinct.

Principle 2

Canberra Glassworks 8th birthday celebration and opening night of the Canberra International Music Festival. Musicians playing cast glass instruments by Sarah Humphrey. Image courtesy of Adam McGrath.