Attendance and Engagement

A small proportion of Australians have not engaged with the arts either receptively or creatively

According to the Australia Council arts participation study 2013, only 5 percent of Australians had not engaged with the arts in the previous year.

Looking specifically at attendance at an arts event (excluding reading), 29 percent of Australians had not attended any arts event in the last 12 months. However, over seven in ten of those who had not attended an arts event in the last 12 months had attended at some point in the past. Also, 50 percent of people were interested in attending arts events in the future, up from 39 percent in 2009, which signals an increasing appetite for the arts.

Over half of Australians (52 percent) had not creatively participated in an arts activity in the past 12 months, this decreased from 59 percent in 2009. Non-creative participants express three broad factors that prevent arts participation:

  • Opportunity costs (having to take time or money from some other activity and devote it to creative arts participation) – 81 percent.
  • Access barriers (distance, opportunity, no-one to do it with, health problems, etc.) - 73 percent (up from 64 percent in 2009).
  • Poor alignment between the arts and their self-image - 64 percent.