Explore past editions of NiTRO, the DDCA’s dedicated space for views and news in the tertiary creative arts community.

Past Editions

Tertiary creative arts and politics: Activist tiger or corporatised pussycat?

Published: October 2017

From Verdi’s compositional call to arms to the visual commentary of Gordon Bennett, art has always played an important role in political change. It captures and reports inequities and can galvanise public energy in a way that evades the written work of the statistician, however elegant their data may be presented.

Art is also deeply affected by political decisions. In Australia, many small arts organisations are still reeling from recent government funding changes. In higher and vocational education, political determinations of which courses, scholarships and research projects are worthy of national support are reshaping how creative art is taught and studied.

This edition of NiTRO considers the role and responses of creative arts disciplines to the political landscape and the influence that political decisions have upon tertiary arts education.

Contributors: Su BakerJenny WilsonEdwina Howell and Gary FoleyTony FryJulian MeyrickSusan DavisAbigail GilmoreRob GawthropJoseph ToltzDomenic Redfern.



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Shaping our future cultural heritage: Tertiary arts graduates and alumni

Published: August 2017

Australia’s leading arts practitioners increasingly hold undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications from our tertiary institutions. Tertiary arts graduates and alumni are pushing the boundaries of cultural understanding and shaping how we will all experience and enjoy art now and in the future. How has their educational experience helped them in their professional arts career? As educators, how do we shape our student experiences to meet the challenges ahead? And how do we then make sure that creative arts schools maintain connections with alumni to bring their experiences back into the education of the new generation of arts students?

In this edition of NiTRO, we present just a small selection to showcase how our graduates and alumni are shaping our cultural and artistic landscape and we explore how tertiary arts programs, schools and institutions are helping to ensure that they reach their potential as cultural entrepreneurs.

Contributors: Clive BarstowJenny WilsonAngie MillerDiana Blom & Dawn BennettShane StrangePaul UhlmannNicholas MarksRyan DanielJenny Wilson and Georgie MeagherLouise CrossenJo ConlonStacey SalazarRachael Haynes


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Sharing Common Ground: Art, Science and Technology

Published: June 2017

Contrary to popular perception, academics in art, science and technology are not isolated in separate camps. A myriad of collaborations are happening across Australia. Where these take place respectfully and inclusively, they are producing new ways of thinking, seeing and creating expressed in both artistic and scientific outcomes. In less equitable settings, creative arts risks losing its identity and independence. Evolutions in science and technology continue to shape the practice of art and, although policy frameworks have still to catch up, the contribution that art brings to science and technology development is increasingly being recognised.

In this NiTRO’s first anniversary edition, creative artists, and colleagues in other disciplines, discuss their perspectives and experiences of the connectivity between art, science and technology.

Contributors: Clive BarstowJenny WilsonRobyn SloggettFrank MillwardPatricia AufderheideOron CattsOliver SmithSvenja J. Kratz and Anita GowersJessica SeymourKim VincsKylie Pappalardo

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Creative Leadership

Published: May 2017

Leadership in tertiary creative arts is not an easy task. The environment is in a constant state of flux. Leaders need to meet evolving government and institutional policy direction, secure sustainability within shifting, and often difficult, funding environments and meet the technical and curriculum expectations of ever changing cohorts of students. In times of stress, the arts leadership represents the frontline for any dissatisfaction from staff, students, institutions and governments. As the saying goes: ‘It's a tough job but someone has to do it’.

In this edition of NiTRO, we consider what it takes to be a leader in creative arts. How can the complexity of leadership be approached? And how can we address the challenges that lie ahead?

Contributors: Su Baker, Jenny Wilson, Annika Harding, Anna Reid, Ian Howard, Professor Barbara de la Harpe and Thembi Mason, Megan Burslem and Cat Hope, Kate Cherry and Jenny Wilson, Steve Chapman

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Naturally Global: Tertiary Creative Arts in an international context

Published: April 2017

Higher education is touted as one of Australia’s leading exports.  Along with colleagues in other disciplines, creative arts schools welcome international students and staff from a myriad of different backgrounds and cultures and connect globally through a conglomeration of international exchanges, conferences and collaborations. For tertiary arts, this is not just the enactment of educational internationalisation strategy but part and parcel of creative endeavour. For art is naturally global.

Contributors: Clive Barstow, Jenny WilsonNatascha Radclyffe-ThomasCaroline McMillenMargaret Baguley and Georgina BartonJames NewittDan BendrupsAndrew TetzlaffHerman van Eyken

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Creative Arts Futures: Probable. Possible. Imagined.

Published: March 2017

Last year NiTRO posed the question ‘Watt’s next for creative arts?” Now, in the first half of 2017, despite the release of the Watt report and a flurry of consultation papers and government statements, we appear no nearer to a definitive answer. Sometimes it appears that all we can do is wait for the clouds to lift and hope that a shaft of sunlight may shine our way. In the meantime, we reprise our original question as our contributors consider what could, and should, be ahead for tertiary creative arts?

Contributors: Su Baker, Jenny Wilson Laurene VaughanSean LowryWarren BebbingtonJenny WallerSandra GattenhofTim Cahill and Julian Meyrick

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Community Connections

Published: November 2016

Creative arts has always faced outwards from academia. Its influence, whether through research or student based projects, shapes many public and specialised communities in a diversity of ways. The fourth edition of NiTRO presents just a selection of projects to showcase the community and creative arts relationships in tertiary education.

Contributors: Jenny WilsonSu BakerDeborah TerryRussell KennedyDeborah StoneAmanda StuartLucy BleachTom YoungLucas IhleinSamantha DonnellyAngela Goddard and Fiona SalmonSean MeeRuth Bereson and Caitlyn ByrneCat Hope

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Academia and Artistic Practice

Published: September 2016

In the third edition of NiTRO we focused on how academia connects, supports and influences artistic practice outside the university walls, and particularly how it prepares its existing and emerging artists for careers in their chosen profession.

Contributors: Jenny WilsonSu BakerPamela BurnardArun SharmaMalcolm GilliesTamara WinikoffEileen Siddins and Ryan DanielSue GillettTracey BensonVanessa TomlinsonIan HaigPeter KnightClive Barstow and Jenny WilsonLinda Ludwig.

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Watt's Next For Creative Arts?

Our first edition focused on the changing higher education landscape and asked: Watt’s next for creative arts?

Published: July 2016

Contributors: Jenny WilsonSu BakerMargaret Gardner AOTim Cahill and Julian MeyrickJulie HareLynn Churchill and Jill FranzDenise Ferris and Marie SierraLynda HawrylukJohn Cumming and Craig Batty

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