The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has expanded its role to funding the arts sector. It appears DFAT is no longer content with focusing on its core issues like international trade and business.
WasteWatch recently dug up a treasure trove of DFAT grants to send Australian artists overseas.
Snuff Puppets, a group who create puppet shows using oversized and absurd puppets, rode the DFAT Grant gravy train in 2012 and 2013 and managed to score four different grants worth $115,720 that sent them to Chile, Peru, Shanghai, and Mumbai.
The grants were probably justified as a component of Australia’s ‘soft power’ projection into the world, but we aren’t sure this is the best use of taxpayer money.
We think that DFAT should get out of the business of arts patronage and to stop using taxpayer money sending puppet shows on around the world working holidays – we have the Australia Council to do that.
For more details on DFAT’s patronage program, check out this website.
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