Artsource quizzed on its procedures

The public art commissioned by Devwest and completed by artist Leanne Bray last year at Goodwood Parade.
The public art commissioned by Devwest and completed by artist Leanne Bray last year at Goodwood Parade.

The working group has requested that the Town’s Community Life director write to Artsource ” a peak membership body of more than 1000 WA visual artists ” seeking clarity on its consultancy representation on projects, its process for selecting artists and its fee structure.

AWG’s dissatisfaction stems from what it believes is Artsource creating a partial conflict of interest by charging artists and the Town membership fees while also charging Devwest, developer of the Burs- wood apartments, a consultancy fee.

The AWG wants clarification on whose best interests Artsource represents considering it had received fees from all three parties for the Goodwood Parade public art project.

While the Town will decide at tonight’s meeting if it will write to the not-for-profit organisation, Artsource has told the Gazette it has had a good working relationship with the Town for some time, already successfully delivering a public art project to the Town’s satisfaction.

‘We believe an appropriately collaborative approach was taken on the (Goodwood Parade) project, and met all requirements to date under the Town of Victoria Park ‘percent of art’ policy,’ Artsource marketing officer Martine Linton said.

‘We have had verbal and written approval from the Town to move forward on the project.’

A report to Council approved by the Town’s Community Life director, Tina Ackerman, says as the AWG was a long-standing member of Artsource, it ‘felt disappointment’ Artsource ‘had not acted within the best interests of the Town’.

The report said paperwork suggested Artsource was receiving a consultancy fee of 17.5 per cent from Devwest, at the top end of the industry standard 10-17 per cent.

AWG was unhappy Artsource had contracted the consultancy to another collective, resulting in the $80,000 possibly being split between three artists to create three smaller artworks that didn’t appear to relate to each other or the $20,000 work completed by Leanne Bray last year.

A Town representative and stakeholders were also not invited to participate in meetings to assess the proposed art, despite it being part of the brief and contract.

Ms Linton said the Town’s membership was only $180 pa and Artsource’s relationship with the Town was separate and unconnected to the contract with Devwest.