Hunter based arts organisation TiNA supported the Hunter arts industry to the tune of $178,000 during 2021 by providing artistic projects, direct funding, paid opportunities and professional development directly to artists.

TiNA Chair KATE BAARTZ says the not-for-profit has just done the books for 2021 in the preparation of their Annual Report and audited financials, and the board was suitably proud of the amount of money and support provided to artists.

“Artists have needed our support more than ever as we emerged from two years of uncertainty and gig cancellations. $178,000 is a big number for TiNA, and I’m so proud that we were able to put money in the pockets of artists, provide opportunities to showcase work and develop skills in the business side of art.”

“We have funded everything from lost wages and virtual performances to a woven bearded dragon and even a piano. The message here is really simple, the more support we get as an organisation through government grants and private donations; the more we can support emerging and experimental artists to take off and take a risk. We are a registered charity which means donations over $2 are tax deductible.”

“Our flagship event, the TiNA Festival showcases emerging and experimental art and our programs throughout the year are an extension of this.”

“We have done a lot of work over the last 18 months making sure the services we provide are what our artistic community needs. Part of this review has also meant streamlining our operations, so from now on you will see us using TiNA rather than Octapod. This is Not Art and TiNA is better recognised in the community so it makes sense for us to use this as our primary brand.

TiNA has also recently appointed a largely unchanged board for the next 12 months and are working on the 25th edition of This is Not Art Festival which will be happening throughout October 2022.

TiNA Executive Manager LAUREN VAN KATWYK says there is so much to build on from what was achieved in the last 12 months.

“We ran grant programs, held professional development workshops and held This is Not Art Festival. All of these are about supporting artists and art in the Hunter.”

“Along the way we have really developed strong partnerships with local councils and the government arts sector and this has allowed us to work closely with local producers by auspicing their projects and providing mentoring to help build a strong arts ecosystem.

“It is clear, when we have money in the bank we are able to do great things for emerging and experimental artists. Our goal is to have 80% of our revenue going directly to programs and artists with the remaining 20% used for operations.”

2021 TiNA program highlights

  • Income lost small grants: The grant provided a half day or full day pay (based on the NAVA code of practice) and hoped to soften the impact of income lost as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown. 23 recipients in the community shared in just over $8,500 in funds.
  • Arts Development Small Grant: Targeted at Port Stephens and Cessnock, 19 projects were funded, 13 in Cessnock ($62,887 in funds) and 6 in Port Stephens ($31,973 in funds).
  • This is Not Art Festival: TiNA was presented in 2021 as two micro festivals, one in February and one in October.
  • Capacity Building and Professional Development: Continuous Music Professional Music training, ‘Get the Grant’ Workshop, Story Casters X Octapod, Creative Business and Creative Connections Workshops
  • Port Stephens Shared Studio Spaces Feasibility Project (ongoing in 2022)
  • Auspice Projects: For The Record, Klapping, Massive Band
  • Targeted Auspice Partnership: Queer and Now
Image: This is Not Art micro Festival, February 2021. Photography: Bryce Hall Photo Video.