Arts minister to artist: "'It's been such a lesson for me. I worked with artists and praised them and supported them, and thought I understood what they did, but I didn't."
I don't think you can be a minister for something and not understand the core issues which affect the portfolio. It means that our ministers have to have first hand experience in what they are representing. Ms. Laidlaw is doing this back to front but she is doing it and she is big enough to see and admit what that means. It may also mean she will be all the more powerful and artistic as a human being because she has learned a good lesson. It's not easy to be an artist . It is not easy to mount an exhibition and it 's really tough for art in Australia because of our headset. The sad thing is our art is welcomed and appreciated overseas by people who live with art and enjoy it as part of their education, upbringing and culture. SA is getting a lot better at it. We have so many talented and special artists here. I am surrounded by artists. We have been doing a better job of fostering it in SA but the artist still has to take big risks, still has to put themselves out there. I have loved supporting the exhibitions of friends and family, but when they spend hours of emotion, a lot of money and time and then people just look and maybe copy and sometimes buy, yes it's tough. I'm glad we've got another artist in our ranks and one who may be able to allow this country to nurture and encourage its artists. We need to have our art everywhere. It needs to be a part of our life. It's special, but not so special that it belongs only in certain venues with certain protocols. Let's celebrate our art and artists. Just enjoy them and what they offer us.