Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and its place in the global art market

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and its place in the global art market Book Section

Australian Indigenous Employability, Education and Entrepreneurship: Exploring the Issues in a Compendium of Case Studies

  • Author(s): Acker, T
  • Secondary Author(s): Pearson, C, Burgess, J, Dayaram, K
  • Published: 2015
  • Publisher: Curtin University

Abstract: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art is a distinctive feature of Australia’s cultural and creative landscape and a sizeable com-ponent of Australian identity. While the political dimensions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art remain much contested, the aesthetic and economic aspects are well established. Reflect-ing the prominent place of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art in Australian society, there have – for over 40 years – been numerous attempts to place Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art into the global art market, both as a cultural experience and a commercial opportunity. This paper surveys the uneven history of these attempts and the often contradictory motivations at work. These attempts are given some context through statisti-cal information and the paper concludes with a summary of the current challenges and opportunities.There are profound levels of economic and social marginalisation for many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, particu-larly in remote areas. In response, there have been numerous policy initiatives and funding programmes, implemented over many years – with limited success. One of the only long term economic successes for remote communities has been the crea-tive industries, through a national network of artist cooperatives, or art centres. While the art produced by remote area Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists has grown to prominence in the Australian cultural landscape, these domestic successes have not been replicated internationally.

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Suggested Citation
Acker, T, 2015, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and its place in the global art market, Book Section, viewed 12 June 2024, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=17499.

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