Payment of artists

The Australia Council affirms the principle that artists should be remunerated for their work and earn income from copyright and royalties, and recognises that underpayment and non-payment affects artists’ incomes and career sustainability. The Australia Council notes that industrial laws, Awards and agreements apply in employment, and industry benchmarks exist to guide rates of remuneration for work and copyright.

The Australia Council expects that artists professionally employed or engaged on Australia Council-funded activities will be remunerated for their work.  The Australia Council considers the remuneration of artists to be integral to effective budgeting and planning, and requires information on artists’ remuneration to be available within funding applications.

Pay scales and conditions may be prescribed by legally binding industrial awards and agreements, such as those monitored by the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA). In other cases, arts industry organisations such as the Australian Writers’ Guild, The Australian Production Design Guild (APDG), the Australian Society of Authors and the National Association for the Visual Arts have recommended appropriate industry standards. Where an industry standard clearly applies, applicants are expected to meet those rates of pay.