Curating conferences around care

The recent Artlands conference shifted the model by centring care and funding all delegates to ensure a side by side approach for future-led thinking.

Regional Arts Australia (RAA) held its conference last week in Canberra. Rather than starting with a theme, or a suite of ideas building out a program, RAA chose to begin with the foundation of care. It was yet another example of bold and brave leadership led by the regions, and offered lessons that the entire sector can take on board.

The occasion was the biennial Artlands gathering, this year coinciding with the organisation’s 80th anniversary. It offered a good moment for change, and to recalibrate for the next 80 years, says Executive Director Ros Abercrombie, whose background is directing arts festivals.

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Gina Fairley is ArtsHub's National Visual Arts Editor. For a decade she worked as a freelance writer and curator across Southeast Asia and was previously the Regional Contributing Editor for Hong Kong based magazines Asian Art News and World Sculpture News. Prior to writing she worked as an arts manager in America and Australia for 14 years, including the regional gallery, biennale and commercial sectors. She is based in Mittagong, regional NSW. Twitter: @ginafairley Instagram: fairleygina