Why sustaining an arts career is so hard

Arts jobs can be exhausting and precarious. How do we find decent work, asks researcher Kate Power?

In the arts in Australia, precarious employment, unpaid work and short-lived careers are the norm.

Many artists and arts workers have ‘portfolio careers‘, piecing together a mixture of jobs while competing for limited funding and career opportunities in the arts.

COVID-19 shone a glaring spotlight on this precarity, exposing the lack of permanent jobs in the sector. Some 81% of artists work as freelancers or on a self-employed basis, without access to sick leave or other entitlements many Australians take for granted.

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