Public diplomacy

DFAT's cultural diplomacy programs feature in the inaugural Australian Arts in Asia Awards

15 August 2013

DFAT congratulates the finalists and winners of the inaugural Australian Arts in Asia Awards, announced in Sydney on 1 August 2013.

The awards recognise the vital role Australian artists and arts organisations play in strengthening Australian ties with Asia, fostering friendship and cultural understanding.

DFAT has been promoting and supporting cultural and artistic collaboration in Asia for many years. The line-up of finalists and winners reflected this record: many have worked with DFAT, whether through the Australia International Cultural Council (AICC); the department's bilateral and regional foundations, councils and institutes; or its overseas missions.

Thirty of the awards finalists were participants in Oz Fest, the largest Australian cultural festival ever staged in India, and the AICC's 2012 Focus Country program. Asialink, Museum Victoria and the Snuff Puppets all took home awards which recognised Oz Fest projects.

Bangarra Dance Theatre was a joint winner of the Dance Award for its tours of Spirit to Mongolia, Thailand and Vietnam. Bangarra's engagement with those countries contributed to celebrations marking 40 years of diplomatic relations with Mongolia in 2012 and Vietnam in 2013.

DFAT is proud to have supported Bangarra through its embassies and as part of the AICC's 2013 Focus Country program in Vietnam.

Oz Fest Indonesia 2014 will be a priority for DFAT's ongoing promotion of Australian arts in Asia. It will be delivered under the auspices of the AICC, and will run from January to April 2014 across the Indonesian archipelago. Program details will be announced later in 2013.

Bangarra performers take a curtain call at the Hanoi Opera House in February 2013 following a performance of Spirit
Bangarra performers take a curtain call at the Hanoi Opera House in February 2013 following a performance of Spirit. Photo: Roger Stonehouse.