Director of The Lismore Regional Gallery, Brett Adlington. Photo Patrick Gorbunovs / The Northern Star
Director of The Lismore Regional Gallery, Brett Adlington. Photo Patrick Gorbunovs / The Northern Star Patrick Gorbunovs

Local in the top 100 most powerful in Australian arts

LISMORE Regional Gallery director Brett Adlington has been included in this year's list of the Top 100 most powerful people in the arts across the country.

The list was published by specialised publication The Art Life and it's officially called The Power Trip.

It is the fifth version of the ranking, expanded this year from 50 to 100, has looked into different types of power within the arts world, according to the website.

"There are four kinds of power: there's money and influence of the kind held by philanthropists, super collectors and major gallery directors; then there's the administrative power of curators, bureaucrats and lower echelon collectors and gallery people; and then there's the illusion of power conjured out of nothing but people with a public profile, an axe to grind and soapbox to yell it to the world. And let's not forget the artists, whose magical combination of talent, visibility and opportunity push them up above the fray," the site explains.

Ranked at number 96, the local arts manager is nominated because "he's finally building the new gallery Lismore has been waiting on for decades".

We asked Mr Adlington about this reaction to the listing.

Have you made the list before?

No, first time.

What does it mean for you, professionally, to be recognised in this list?

In some ways it's a bit of a joke, but in another, it does mean something to be recognised nationally.

It's great that the gallery redevelopment is being noted well beyond the Northern Rivers, and indeed Queensland.

So, personally, it is a bit of a nice pat on the back to be acknowledged in this way.

From this year's names, who are you happy to be sharing the list with and why?

There is so many great artists and curators I have a lot of respect for, including Djon Mundine, Soda_Jerk, Deborah Kelly, Tony Albert and Daniel Boyd.

Also people such as Lisa Havilah, Michael Bran, Philip Bacon, Ursula Sullivan and Joanna Strumpf and Michael Lynch are people I have the utmost regard for in terms of continued support of Australian artists and galleries.

More personally, close colleagues such as Susi Muddiman, Tracy Cooper-Lavery and Michael Rolf have all been fantastic people who have been great sounding boards and supporters who have each achieved great things.

Tracy in particular turned around Rockhampton Gallery when she was there, and is now doing fantastic things at the Gold Coast. And Susi - well, what she has achieved at Tweed is extraordinary.

Are you and Susi Muddiman (from Tweed Regional Gallery) the only people from NSW regional galleries in the list?

There is also Bree Pickering, new director of the Murray Art Museum in Albury. She has come back to Australia from New York, so I haven't met her yet.

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