25 January

Au Revoir to Arts Law’s Student Volunteers

Volunteers are integral to Arts Law’s identity. From our brilliant pro-bono lawyers to students, the time and expertise volunteers dedicate to our organisation enables us to expand our reach and impact. Three of our student volunteers who are completing their time with Arts Law reflect upon their time here. Read on below.

Today marks the end of our time as volunteers at the Arts Law Centre of Australia.  This journey has been an incredible one, marked by passion, creativity, and purpose. It has been a privilege to be part of Australia’s only independent national community legal center, and to work alongside dedicated professionals who are not only experts in their field but also deeply passionate about empowering and protecting artists. 

From the very first day we felt so welcome, included, and valued. Ashna, Jess and Victoria guided us on this journey with such passion and oftentimes a lot of patience. We cannot thank them enough for showing us the ropes, answering all our questions, and creating such a warm and welcoming environment. It has been such a pleasure to be able to meet and work alongside some of the best lawyers and paralegals in the creative space. We have had the opportunity to work on Wills and Estate projects with Donna Robinson, the director of Artists in the Black, draft information sheets for the amazing Lara Jash to assist on outreach programs and pick the brains of solicitors Jack Howard and Anna Spies. And of course, we have enjoyed plenty of little Christmas lunches, birthday surprises and farewell drinks between projects. It is rare to work alongside such lovely and passionate professionals, and have colleagues become lifelong friends. 

The work we undertook was incredibly diverse. As legal student volunteers, our primary role is to be the first point of contact for clients and answer the legal queries sent through the online form. As a result, we gained first-hand insight into the world of intellectual property law and all the various legal issues that may arise. Each week we were surprised by the diversity of legal questions and in awe of the creativity of our clients here at Arts Law. 

The creative world is fast paced, ever-changing and constantly innovating, and it has been so fascinating to see how the law has followed. Topics such as AI, NFT’s, streaming and influencers have all presented unique and exciting challenges for our lawyers, and it has been such a pleasure to assist them through corresponding with the clients and researching reforms. 

We also had the opportunity to assist in tasks within the Artists in the Black Program which champions Indigenous artists and protects their rights. This was particularly interesting as we were exposed to a range of incredible Indigenous artists and their artwork and glimpsed the important work that Art Centres across Australia do in providing space for Indigenous artists. 

Overall, it has been an incredibly enriching experience working on a variety of fascinating cases alongside an incredible team. Our time as vollies at Arts Law has not only strengthened our legal skills but also deepened our appreciation of the arts and the law’s role in facilitating creative expression.  

We couldn’t be more grateful for our experience and recommend any law students or lawyers with an interest in empowering artists and protecting creative communities to get involved! 

Jess, Jasleen, and Anna

We want to take the time to thank Jess, Jasleen, and Anna for their contributions, and we wish them the best in all future endeavours.