The fine art of public panic

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Madeleine Dore

Tropfest is back. The Biennale of Sydney was saved as were PIAF's The Giants. Announcing your demise turns out to be a great way to find a new sponsor.

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After publicly pulling the plug and leaving the sector and 16 finalists shocked, this week Tropfest announced it is back from the abyss as it has received ‘a lifeline’ from CGU Insurance to stage the Festival in 2016.

Between the lines of such a funding success stories are lessons for other arts organisations who may be on the brink of a funding crisis.  

In the arts, we often feel the pressure to solider through, or ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’, yet as the screen sector has seen with the closure of Metro Screen – who were modest in their closure rather than creating an immediate sense of urgency – such approaches don’t work as nobody notices you.

Could generating public outcry or panic be used as an intentional strategy to seduce philanthropists, government and corporate sponsors?

About the author

Madeleine Dore is a freelance writer and founder of Extraordinary Routines, an interview project exploring the intersection between creativity and imperfection. She is the previous Deputy Editor at ArtsHub. Follow her on Twitter at @RoutineCurator