Creators Fund paves the way for independent creatives to take their practice and their careers to the next level by providing them with one of the most important and scarce creative resources – time – to research, innovate and take risks.
Open to individual creative practitioners and collectives across all disciplines, and at all career stages, the program supports artists and creatives to undertake a sustained period of intensive research and development or experimentation.
The Creators Fund provides financial support for up to six months for creative practitioners to undertake the following activities that will enable career advancement and innovation within the creative industries:
- Intensive creative research and development of new ideas/concepts
- Practice based experimentation
Applications can be for solo activity or activity undertaken by small creative collectives/collaborations.
Update: In line with the Victorian Government’s Creative State 2025 strategy, work is currently underway on a new round of the Creators Fund program. More details will be available later in 2021.
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** If you have received funding through this program and your project has been impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19), please contact program staff listed below. **
Who can apply
The Creators Fund accepts applications from individuals and collectives. Applications are encouraged from a wide range of creative disciplines from across the sector, including but not limited to screen, fashion, design, digital games, visual arts, literature, dance, circus, cabaret, music, theatre, multidisciplinary and experimental work.
The primary focus of the proposal must include Victorian-based individual professional creative practitioners (emerging to established) and/or Victorian-based professional collectives AND a creative ideas or activity.
Groups of individuals who join together as a collective must be legally constituted or nominate either an individual or an auspicing body to apply, and to take legal and financial responsibility for the grant should one be awarded.
This state-wide program encourages applications from First Peoples, Deaf and Disabled creatives, LGBTIQ+ applicants, regional applicants and applicants from culturally and linguistically diverse communities.
Who to talk to
Chloe Turner, Senior Arts Officer on 03 8683 3179 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Links and downloads
- Creators Fund Guidelines - COMING SOON
- Information for all applicants
- Creators Fund Panel Assessors and Chair List 2021
Previous recipients 2020
Eighteen local creative practitioners and collectives have received support through the Creators Fund to undertake intensive research, experimentation and development that will take their careers, practice and businesses to a new level.
Auspicious Arts Projects on behalf of Sandra Parker, $38,500
A three-month period of research into new dance and installation works, in sites other than traditional theatres, that explore the intersection of installation art and choreography.
Fiona Tuomy, $35,000
Development and research to pioneer an international best practice model for disability-led inclusive filmmaking and storytelling for screen, which will also inform the development and writing of a feature hybrid narrative/documentary film script.
Michael Prior, $38,603
Research to expand his background in gallery installations into outdoor sculptures for public spaces, including developing techniques to create kinetic artworks that respond to natural energy.
Georgia Mill, $24,973
Research into representations of chronic pain, sexuality and the body, to inform the development of a draft manuscript, by Georgia, a non-fiction writer. This includes undertaking a mentorship with established non-fiction writer Briohny Doyle.
Robin Fox, $35,000
Research and development of immersive audio-visual performances that explore synaesthesia, the condition of perceiving one sense as another. The work includes an exploration of audio-visual hallucinations, using new projection mediums and other techniques.
Omeo Dance Inc., $38,820
For art collective Stony Creek Collective to undertake research into the environmental challenges being faced in the foothill forests of East Gippsland. The research will inform a range of creative works across dance, photography and poetry that will be shared in a series of public installations and performances.
Marco Cher-Gibard, $39,995
As an electronic artist, Marco will work with specialist mentors and undertake research to broaden his practice. He will explore new methodologies to breakdown traditional barriers for amateur musicians to participate alongside, and under the guidance of, experienced mentors. He will also investigate the idea of massed single instrument ensembles and ideas for composition with saxophone.
Kevin Powe, $37,700
Research and creative development of interactive, story-based experiences for the Amazon Alexa (a virtual assistant developed by Amazon). This includes investigating user experience, technical and other challenges related to working with this new platform for storytelling. The project will include ways of delivering voice-controlled interaction and unique soundscapes for listeners as part of an immersive experience.
Jo Ze Sparks, $39,800
Research and development for an immersive theatre piece that explores interdisciplinary forms, Indigenous storytelling that challenges Western notions of theatre, and the resilience of the Indigenous female body.
Research by the multi-award-winning production company into how multi-person virtual reality experiences (“social virtual reality”) might evolve and how they could be leveraged by the creative industries.
James Rushford, $27,661
A composer and performer, James will research how the concept of a shadow could be used as a metaphor for the ideas that underpin music. His work will include written analysis, sound surveys at various sites and studio research at EMS (electronic music studios in Stockholm, Sweden) and Melbourne Electronic Sound Studio.
Madeleine Flynn, $42,015
Research and development that will explore artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to create prototypes that will be used in experimental audio works. The exploration includes ways to create AI that is culturally inclusive and accessible so that it can interact and respond to audiences from a range of backgrounds and abilities. The artist will collaborate with app developer Mick Byrne, researcher Josephine Young, Noongar writer Cassie Lynch and Tim Humphrey.
Erica Tandori, $30,270
Development and exploration of ways to incorporate interactive, novel display and robotic technologies, as well as living organisms, into future sculptural artworks that use food, clay and paper to convey key biomedicine concepts to low vision and blind audiences.
Hayley Millar-Baker, $25,800
Research into childhood recollections to inform the development of a body of 11 photographic-assemblage works recounting the artist’s early memories and exploring how attitudes are passed down through generations in a family.
Tristen Harwood, $39,999
Research and development of a book-length hybrid, non-fiction work exploring the relationship and tension between Australia’s city and desert areas. The project will include experimenting with narrative, drawing on family stories, observations of architecture and geography, art criticism and historical research.
Nyein Chan Aung, $47,500
Research into existing palliative care rooms (PCR) and design development of a method to convert any room into a temporary PCR, with an emphasis on dignity, community, efficiency and end of life care.
A2K Media Pty Ltd, $38,490
Research and consultation with the disabled community and early learning education community to inform the development of a sketch comedy show for children that promotes understanding about living with disability.
Ethno Tekh v2, $48,960
As an electronic musician-turned-coder, Chris will undertake research to generate new forms of audio-visual expression in virtual reality platforms. The project looks to the future to uncover the possibilities that virtual reality holds for creative expression.
Previous recipients 2019
The 2019 Creators – individuals as well as collectives and small companies – will embark on intensive research, development and experimentation that will set the foundation for career-defining new work in the years ahead. Collectively the recipients will share in $900,000 worth of funding.
Mama Alto performing on stage
Jessica Barclay Lawton, CARLTON NORTH, $43,830
Writer and filmmaker Jessica Lawton will undertake a six-month period of intensive practical research exploring what 'the Australian dream' means today. Working with mentor and leading social researcher Pamela Souvlis, director of photography Alex Cardy, casting agents and refugee community support groups, Jessica will connect with people from a range of backgrounds. Her learnings will inform the concept for a new hybrid feature film We're Getting a Pool.
Jacob Boehme, BENTLEIGH EAST, $39,000
Over six months dancer and choreographer Jacob Boehme will undertake research to develop ethical and curatorial frameworks for presenting stories by, for and about people living with HIV. Through workshops, consultations and collaborations with HIV+ community members and HIV+ artists, the new frameworks he develops will form the basis of a new community-led performance installation called The Blood Library.
Tony Briggs, CAULFIELD NORTH, $50,000
Filmmaker and curator Tony Briggs will research the latest in First Peoples filmmaking and attend film festivals in New Zealand and the Arctic Circle to view films, participate in events and develop networks with First Peoples filmmakers, curators and programmers.
Sarah Firth, BRUNSWICK EAST, $30,000
Artist, writer and creative entrepreneur Sarah Firth's six-month project will inform the development of her debut graphic novel Stop Making Sense, an innovative, essay-style graphic work. Sarah will undertake intensive research into issues such as gentrification, death, vanity, perception, cognitive bias, addiction, sex and environmentalism as well as philosophy, science and social and psychological theory before entering into a writing period and thumbnailing stage. She will also explore a range of distinct visual styles aligning with each topic.
Ahmad Galea and Finn Morgan, FAIRFIELD, $36,000
Game developers Ahmad Jacob Galea and Finn Morgan will undertake research and development focused on non-player characters (NPCs) in games. NPCs are characters controlled by the computer rather than the player and are often limited to pre-programmed, repetitive interactions and behaviours. Over six months, they will work to create a series of algorithms to be applied to non-player characters in order to bring them life in games with unpredictable, ever changing environments.
Lia Hills, UPWEY, $24,249
Experimental author Lia Hills will undertake a period of research and experimentation to inform a new literary novel set in the Mallee. Lia will undertake interviews with a range of people living in the Mallee region to get a sense of the community and will also record the landscape. She will then use voice-recognition software which will take the nature recordings and translate them into words and language patterns. Transcripts from her activities will be used to develop her novel Love Songs for a Mortal. Lia will connect with a range of practitioners, film makers, musicians and visual artists to explore new techniques throughout the process.
Courtney Holm, FITZROY NORTH, $50,000
Fashion designer Courtney Holm will undertake research into the areas of zero waste, technology and customisation for the fashion industry. Courtney will explore advancements in robotics that are working to achieve zero waste in knitting as well as compostable stretch fibre. Her research and experimentation will inform the development of a new conceptual fashion collection.
Jonathan Homsey, GARDENVALE, $36,280
Dancer and choreographer Jonathan Homsey's 14-week project will explore how choreography and movement can create a sense of belonging within public spaces and connect diasporas, particularly in the LGBT+ and Asian communities. Jonathan will undertake creative research focussed on pedestrian movement, social dance and improvisation and undertake mentorships with leading choreographers. He will also travel to the US to attend events during Seattle's Pride month and undertake research with US Skinner Release Technique specialist Stephanie Skura. Connecting with Asian and queer choreographers and cultural leaders, Jonathan will explore how dance connects both trained and untrained dancers and will test his research through a series of public workshops and gatherings.
Lyndal Jones, FLEMINGTON, $41,400
Multi-disciplinary artist Lyndal Jones's four-month project will see her working with artists, horticulturalists and space experts to learn about the prospect of human colonies on Mars. It will commence with a residency at the Living Museum of the West where Lyndal will work with artist/writer and Mars specialist Annalea Beattie and set designer and special effects expert Paul Garry who has worked on films such as Star Wars.
Parisa Latifi and Reza Latifi, $37,997
Artists Parisa and Reza Latifi's four-month project will involve intensive research into the lives of Iran's LGBTQIA+ diaspora communities living in Turkey. They will then work with choreographer Tara Jade Samaya and with mentors Amiel Courtin-Wilson (filmmaker and artist) and Roslyn Oades (theatre maker) to explore new ways of telling these stories.
Jo Lloyd, ST KILDA EAST, $47,000
Over four months choreographer Jo Lloyd will seek to expand her choreographic method by undertaking research into new dance methodologies. She will work solo and with a composer and team of established and emerging dancers. Jo will also develop a form of notation that captures her choreographic method and could be used as a way of archiving her work so it can be remounted or further developed in the future.
Mama Alto, FITZROY NORTH, $35,000
Over six months, cabaret artist and musician Mama Alto will undertake intensive research into the concept of the 'Diva' and society's relationship to ideas of womanhood and performance. This will include historical research and interviews with leading performers, as well 'in progress' showcase events to test and trial new theatre, musical and cabaret works that draw on the research.
Luke Miller, FITZROY, $27,620
Game developer Luke Miller will undertake a 13-week research period exploring new filmmaking and game development processes to inform the development of a new artistic game concept. This will include experimenting with bandwidth volumetric capture, where footage is captured that can be viewed on flat screens as well as 3D and VR devices, and passive interaction where the character in the scene reacts to the player based on their location rather than anything they do with their controller. Luke's process will be shared via articles and the code behind his low bandwidth volumetric capture footage will be made available for other developers and filmmakers to access.
Jack Mitchell and Thomas Dudley, BRUNSWICK, $38,000
Architect Jack Mitchell and writer and artist Thomas Dudley will explore how urban development can benefit from cultural knowledge, with a focus on exploring First Peoples' relationships to water. They will conduct research and engage with Melbourne’s creative sector, First Peoples community organisations, design professionals and government bodies. They will create a podcast that shares cultural knowledge about water and highlights how these learnings can be incorporated into Melbourne's future urban development.
Justin Olstein, ST KILDA EAST, $25,897
Filmmaker Justin Olstein's five-month project will see him undertaking intensive research into Orthodox Judaism's stance on homosexuality. He will consult with community members including rabbis, scholars and LBGTIQ advocates to enhance his understanding of a range of perspectives. He will then work with actors in a workshop environment to test potential story and character ideas. This process will inform the development and writing of a feature film treatment.
Anthony Pateras, THORNBURY, $32,706
Musician and composer Anthony Pateras will undertake a three-month period of research and experimentation exploring the links between sound and medicine to inform a major new electro-acoustic composition. Anthony will explore the many and varied physiological and psychological ways the ear, the body and the mind can react to sound and how to incorporate his discoveries into his music.
Oscar Raby, DOCKLANDS, $39,815
Over six months, multimedia artist Oscar Raby will explore the notion of control and user agency in virtual reality storytelling. Oscar will speak with world-leading experts on interactive narrative including video game designer Dan Pinchbeck (Dear Esther), game developer, VR filmmaker and writer Navid Khonsari (GTA), and director/writer David Cronenberg (Existenz). He will also undertake a series of VR experiments and conduct research at the National Theatre in London to explore how actors inhabit their characters. The project will inform a future work that bridges VR and stage performance.
Lisa Radford and Yhonnie Scarce, EAST MELBOURNE, $37,745Over three months, artists Lisa Radford and Yhonnie Scarce will travel to historical sites, museums and memorials across America, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Japan and Australia that commemorate genocide and/or nuclear destruction. They will undertake research and extensively document these sites and their learnings will inform the development of new visual art works and a publication.
Emma Roberts and Ben Andrews, COBURG NORTH, $38,598
Over four months, creative producer Emma Roberts and virtual reality designer Ben Andrews will explore the creative possibilities of multi-sensory virtual reality (MVR). They will research MVR technologies and develop and test a series of virtual reality prototypes that seek to produce, recreate or amplify feelings of awe for audience members.
Efterpi Soropos, WEST FOOTSCRAY, $33,000
Over three months, cross-practice designer Effe Soropos will conduct research into the development of purpose-built artistic environments, or 'access spaces', that allow people with diverse neural and cognitive abilities to access performative, visual and sound-based art works. During this time Effe will interview leading access and engagement specialists in both Sydney and Melbourne, experiment with current technologies in immersive environments and spend time reading, writing and formulating the basis for her new concept that will inform her work for future projects.
Alexander Swords, FITZROY, $49,300
Writer and narrative designer for games, Alexander Swords will undertake research over five months to develop a framework for designing and writing games narratives. He will work with practitioners from a range of game genres to develop and test the framework which will ultimately be made available to any creative wishing to work in this emerging interactive space.
TeePee Studios, DOCKLANDS, $22,716
Digital media production company TeePee Studios will spend three months investigating ways to improve and streamline their workflows to increase productivity and efficiency as their film and games development workload increases. This will include researching and testing new software, hardware and tools, training to expand their technical skills and a redesign of their internal network to reduce the impact of time-intensive processes such as rendering. They will share their learnings with other companies working in the VFX and digital games space.
Jessica Wilson, HEIDELBERG HEIGHTS, $31,000
Theatre maker Jessica Wilson will undertake research and development for a new work that will explore how children from a broad range of cultural backgrounds relate to landscape and place. This collaborative project will be developed in partnership with Aboriginal anthropologist Suzi Hutchings, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Artplay and the Boon Wurrung Foundation.
David Woods and The Small Collective, BRUNSWICK, $50,000
Over six months, multi-disciplinary artist collective The Small Collective will work with renowned directors and choreographers to explore diverse performances practices ranging from theatre to comedy to contemporary dance. The process will support the group to refine their performance style and showcase practical and democratic ways of developing inclusive performances.