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India - Art & culture overview

Country profile

Policies and initiatives

Governance structure

  • India’s Ministry of Culture is responsible for the preservation and conservation of India’s cultural heritage and the promotion of all forms of art and culture, both tangible and intangible. There are two attached offices under the Ministry of Culture of significance, namely the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and the National Archives of India. The ASI, is the premier organisation for the archaeological research and protection of the cultural heritage of India. The National Archives of India is the custodian of the records based on their enduring value.
  • The Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA) under the Ministry of Culture is a centre for research, academic pursuit and dissemination in the field of the arts.
  • The Indian Literature Abroad project initiated by the Ministry of Culture, supports and facilitates the promotion and translation of heritage and contemporary literature from the Indian languages into major foreign languages (especially those recognized by UNESCO).
  • The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting is responsible for policy matters related to the private broadcasting sector, also having jurisdiction over the public broadcasting Prasar Bharati network, multi-media advertising and publicity of the policies and programs of the Union Government, film promotion and certification and regulation of print media.
  • The Press Council of India works towards preserving the freedom of the press and maintaining and improving the standards of newspapers and news agencies in India.
  • The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) is a statutory body under Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, regulating the public exhibition of films under the provisions of the Cinematograph Act 1952, which manages the screening of films including short films, documentaries, television shows and their promotion in theatres or their broadcasting via television.
  • The National Gallery of Modern Art is the premier art gallery under Ministry of Culture, Government of India. The main museum at Jaipur House in New Delhi was established on 29 March 1954 by the Government of India, with subsequent branches in Mumbai and Bangalore.
Art & culture is a broad and diverse area of study across India and Australia. The opportunity for cross-disciplinary studies makes this an area with many opportunities for researchers.

Australia - Art & culture overview

Country profile

Policies and initiatives

Governance structure

  • The Australian Heritage Council is the principal adviser to the Australian Government on heritage matters. The Council assesses nominations for the National Heritage List, and the Commonwealth Heritage List. The Department of the Environment is also responsible for heritage issues. The Office of Arts, Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communication supports inclusiveness and growth in Australia's creative sector, and protects and promotes Australian content and culture. 
  • Creative Australia is the Australian Government's arts funding and advisory body, and focuses on increasing the visibility of Australia's arts and culture. It also leads policy advice and funds empirical research and remains actively committed to supporting Australian artists and organisations to stay connected internationally and respond to ongoing challenges to cross-border collaboration.
  • The Australian Press Council was established in 1976 and is responsible for promoting good standards of media practice, community access to information of public interest, and freedom of expression through the media. The Press Council is also the principal body with responsibility for responding to complaints about Australian newspapers, magazines and associated digital outlets.
  • The Classification Board classifies every film, computer games, publications and bona fide art works before they can be legally made available to the public, unless they are exempt or being shown at a registered event. 

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Bilateral frameworks for cooperation between India and Australia

  • Bilateral agreements signed between Australia and India during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s state visit to Australia in 2014 included arts & culture.
  • Confluence: A Festival of India in Australia is an annual event held at multiple venues across Australia, supported by the High Commission of India in Australia and produced by pioneering arts and Entertainment Company Teamwork Arts and Australia-based Gandhi Creations. Confluence aims to bring India and Australia closer in a bond which unites the arts with the deep ties of friendship
  • In 2018 Australia hosted a major cultural festival in India The festival aim to deepen the engagement between our two countries and further strengthen people-to-people ties.

Trade and investment opportunity

  • India’s National Education Policy 2020 acknowledges the importance of the humanities and social sciences to address societal issues, climate concerns and to graduate well-rounded citizens. The NEP calls for high-quality interdisciplinary research across fields rooted in a deep understanding of the social sciences and humanities.
  • The Indian Government has announced that it will set up ten Indian Institutes of Liberal Arts/ Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities (MERUs) based on the model and standards of the Indian Institutes of Technology.
  • India’s Australia Economic Strategy acknowledges the potential for greater bilateral collaboration, given Australia’s strong capabilities in social sciences, humanities, art and music, evidenced by strong international rankings. Partnerships in these sectors between India and Australia are strong at the researcher level; the AES suggests that a research fund, with a contribution of USD 10 million from each country, focusing on humanities and social sciences, could facilitate greater collaboration with Australian universities.
  • The Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA)’s report Australia’s Energy Transition Research Plan, sets out the multidisciplinary challenges and singles out the need to fund humanities and social sciences research as a priority. The report finds that while Australia performs well in science, engineering and technology related energy research, there is an urgent need for research in the humanities, arts and social sciences to achieve a successful energy transition and to engage people in the context of their lives, jobs and communities.
  • Invest India is promoting mobile gaming as an investment opportunity and the All India Gaming Federation (AIGF) is working with the government to introduce 26% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), while the Australian Government recently  announced a 30% Digital Games Tax Offset as part of a $1.2 billion Digital Economy Strategy to support Australia "taking a greater share of the $250 billion global game development market". Interactive Games & Entertainment Association (IGEA) is the peak industry association representing the voice of Australian and New Zealand companies in the computer and video games industry and supports the business and public policy interests of the games industry, through advocacy, research and education programs.
  • The Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT), presents a unique mix of the most exciting and important contemporary art from the region and offers a cross-cultural insight. These series include various Indian artists, commissions and acquisitions.
  • Asia TOPA is a stunning and multi-art form collection of works over the three-month long festival that explores the connections between contemporary Australia and its growing diaspora. The 2020 program focused on new work creation alongside presentations of iconic and legendary artists and reflects the contemporary imagination and lived experience of artists from the entire Asia-Pacific region. 
  • The National Gallery of Australia’s (NGA) Divine worlds brings together masterpieces of Indian painting from the collection of the National Gallery of Australia. Dating from the 15th to the 20th century, the paintings range from exquisite intimate miniatures to vast hunting scenes, monumental pilgrimage maps and brilliantly coloured devotional shrine hangings. Celebrating the traditions of Hindu, Jain and Islamic India, the paintings are rich in legend, regal drama and romance. Divine worlds offers a magnificent opportunity to revel in rarely seen treasures from the national art collection.
  • The National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) is celebrating the unique artistic traditions developed by diverse indigenous and regional communities across India, through its Transforming Worlds: Change and Tradition in Contemporary India. This collection explores the ways artists and creatives are using these visual languages to respond to India’s rapidly changing social and physical environments.
  • The Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) is the largest festival of its kind in Australia, celebrating the best of Indian cinema in all its forms. The festival presents a diverse selection of movies that encapsulates the best of Indian cinema and films from the Indian sub-continent.

Cooperation and collaborations

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