For twenty years Kickstart has worked with early-career artists, inspiring them to create their most ambitious work to date, presented at Next Wave Festival in Melbourne. Alongside our plans for 2022 and beyond, we reconsider and reinvent what our legacy commissioning and artist development program could be.

Centring artists where they live and work, we are shifting our structures to foster slow development, blend intergenerational support and mentorship, and see artists experiment from the vantage point of their existing location, contexts, and communities.

Co-curated with the Artistic Directorate, Kickstart artists will work alongside artists of their own cohort, and with Next Wave current and alumni artists of various programming streams.

Curation is an intrinsic part of all arts organisations. It is a multi-layered, conscious and unconscious process that extends far beyond the moment of an artist call-out or peer review panel. Inherent elements of labour, gatekeeping, literacy, initiation, relationship and hierarchy are involved in all selection processes.

As Next Wave continues to embark on a new era of experimentation, we want to increase accessibility for artists who engage with us and our programs. Our team – which is spread across this continent – invests in a diverse and expansive network of knowledgeable artists and producers tasked with proactively engaging their communities.

Kickstart continues to focus its support on early-career artists, especially those who are on a trajectory of advancing their career and capacity; whose practice is embedded in, driven or shaped by community; who embrace experimentation and rigour; and who approach their practice from radical and non-conventional knowledge frameworks.

Meet the 2021 Cohort →

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