- 15 Dec 21
"€25m has been allocated to pilot a basic income scheme for artists, which is a fundamental priority for me and my Department," Minister Catherine Martin said.
Almost 200 artists, arts workers and representatives attended a stakeholder forum today on Basic Income for the Arts (BIA), hosted by the Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin.
The €25m pilot scheme opens for applications early in the New Year – and will be available to practising artists and arts workers to support their creative practices.
Today's forum offered participants the opportunity to feed into the policy development underpinning the pilot scheme.
Speaking about the scheme, Minister Martin described it as "a once in a generation policy intervention" and a measure that she believes "will redraw the landscape for the arts for hopefully many years to come."
"Our culture and the arts are a fundamental expression of who we are as a nation," she continued. "Our rich cultural heritage is one of our greatest assets, and our artists weave a sense of identity, creativity and belonging into the fabric of our communities. The intrinsic societal value of culture and the arts was particularly evident during the pandemic, where it provided colour, light and hope in uncertain times.”
Last year, the Arts and Culture Recovery Taskforce was set up in response to the pandemic, to provide recommendations for the sector's recovery. The main recommendation of that taskforce was to launch a pilot scheme for basic income for the arts.
“€25m has been allocated to pilot a basic income scheme for artists, which is a fundamental priority for me and my Department," the Minister resumed. "I am determined to ensure that permanent damage is not done to the arts sector from the pandemic and that the Basic Income pilot scheme is in fact part of the response to ensure the arts in Ireland come back stronger than ever."
Further details about the Basic Income for the Arts Pilot Scheme, including a policy paper, will be published on the Department’s website after the feedback and input from today's Forum is assessed and finalised.