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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 11:41 
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Longdog wrote:
Kyle move out of that place before you have a little one with a funny walk and dodgy spelling.


And 4 eyes, you know!


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 11:53 
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ah, now that just means he can see better than us. May be why he wupped us at pool :lol:


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 11:57 
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I don't remember him 'wupping' me. I think you were so tired you fell asleep whilst sitting in that chair. I beat Paul time and time again I'm afraid. What can you do?


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:00 
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Me thinks the lady doth protest too much!!!


I certainly think "wupping" was a fair description of that nights rounds of 9 ball :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Did you actually win a game that night Kyle?


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:03 
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Dude, you are so going down on Wednesday even with your 2 extra eyes!

I'll just picture Kev's face whenever I'm breaking (as a punishment for saying Paul 'wupped us') and the 9 ball will drop every time!


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:04 
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:withstupid:

Well everyone won their games against me :lol: But I've got to say Paul definitely had the upper hand over all.

Guess you have to have one thing in your favour :lol:


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:38 
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I won a game off the break last weds Kyle

Pitty you weren't around to witness it 8) 8)


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:40 
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Erm guys, not that I'd want to spoil anything but you might want to move your tales of glory to the Chatter section.


Last edited by seriouschris on 02.07.2007, 12:59, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:40 
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If Paul sinks the 9 off the break and nobody is there did it really happen?

Well done. Now we've both done it. Were you playing Chris at the time? That would've been the sweetest.


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:46 
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:oops:


Last edited by Longdog on 02.07.2007, 13:06, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 12:50 
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Quote:
If Paul sinks the 9 off the break and nobody is there did it really happen?


I hope that was a Nietzche style proposition rather than a comment on the reliability of my 9 ball glory storys


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 13:04 
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Sorry Chris, couldn't resist this :lol:


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 13:11 
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Nice

I'll set it as my desktop wallpaper


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 14:34 
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Location: Salt Lake City? Really? How did that happen?
I don't have much time for the forum these days. I certainly don't get on it at work, and have been trying to minimize computer time away from work. So sorry if it seems I'm avoiding this thread. It took me two days just to read it all! For the curious, here's a few things that come to mind after reading this thread, although I'll surely forget several points I could comment on. So I'm home from work and will probably spend the next hour explaining my work... sigh....

1) Christian, I'm afraid that I do not make $50K as assistant coordinator. Everyone from friends to government researchers doing studies on art centres have stated that it's ridiculous how much art centre coordinators make as opposed to other people in the art world in big cities. There are of course perks to being here and it's just a lifestyle choice that only other art coordinators understand. At the Dreaming festival I had a lovely time catching up and trading war stories with Will from Buku past and Anthony from Injalak. And while I understand your idea of splitting up my salary over the number of yidaki sold, that of course is far from accurate, as you know. I'm a manager, a bookkeeper, the IT guy, a travel agent, tour manager, etc., and even as a buyer and salesman, I buy and sell a lot more than just yidaki. Ooh - once I even had to pick and buy a coffin for a great elder's funeral! That's a weird one that wasn't in my job description.

2) Jason, ANKAAA has no governing role over art centres. It is an association of the Top End art centres that is primarily about advocacy, promoting the work of art centres to government and the public, and providing services such as training. Daniel's quotes from their materials cover it pretty well. They can't actually tell us what to do at all, but they can kick us out of the club for not keeping up the standards. But, I'm proud to say, Buku sets many of the standards. ;-) I've got a copy of one of these government reports that says so.

3) This is not a rule for all art centres, but Buku buys all work cash up front. A yidaki maker comes in from the bush, gets cash, goes shopping, and goes back to the bush. It doesn't matter if I sell the yidaki at a discount to a wholesaler or at a larger markup to a retail customer. The yidaki maker has already been paid. It's my duty to keep it as fair as I can to the makers while not putting the art centre out of business.

4) Buku's standard markup is posted on the wall near the cash register, and is not a secret from anyone. As stated, it's about 60-40, just rounded to cleaner numbers to work with. For domestic sales, 10% GST comes out of Buku's take. Sorry, but overseas customers therefore pay a bit more to cover our costs than domestic ones do. As I said before, for several reasons, I'm changing things in the better interest of the yidaki business. Pricing as above is still tagged on the instruments in the shop, but long distance sales are different - which is not an unusual business practice. It was insane that retail and wholesale customers paid basically the same price to Buku for yidaki. We want the instruments available as far and wide as possible. History shows that the more people promoting and making the instruments available in more places, the more are sold. Serious Sticks is taking stock to Swizzeridoo very soon. They will sell sticks there that would not have sold otherwise. Easy. Buku will charge more to retail customers so that we are no longer undercutting our resellers and making their life harder, and so that we can cover our loss from the larger discounts resellers are now getting. If we don't do that, we will go out of business, and that is not in the best interest of the yidaki makers! Simple!

5) Where does the art centre's money go? Anybody who's run a business of any size knows that this is largely a boring question. By the end of the month, I should have the break down for the 2006-7 financial year. I'll see if there's any objection to making it public. You can all know such fascinating things as how much we spent on stationary, power and water bills, vehicle maintenance, building maintenance, insurance, etc., in addition to what we took in in sales and how much went to the artists. Last financial year was our highest earning year ever, by a longshot, just shy of $2 million in sales. About $1.16 of that was up front payments to the artists (which also includes loans, mostly in the form of plane flights around the bush for art sales or ceremony), so that's below 60%. That's lower than most years, largely because it was a landmark year with some big events, such as one massive sale of a collection artworks called Yakumirri in August which had all been purchased from the artists in the previous financial year. The payments to the artists were recorded in 2004-2005, while the sale of the collection was recorded in 2005-2006. Things like that can sway the percentage from year to year. If memory serves, in 2004-5, we were on the high end of the government's recommended percentage for sustainable art centre practice, around 70%, then the 58% or so in 2005-2006 was on the low end, so we swung between the two limits. Boring, eh?

The landmark year resulted in more profit than usual. Some of that money has gone into infrastrucure like computers and long overdue building maintenance. We had one old Toyota Troop carrier die in the bush and we lived without it for about a year, but decided to buy another since we could. These vehicles (2) are used by staff for professional and some recreational purposes. Important visitors are shuttled around (like Christian and a recemt group of Swedish didjers who I picked up from the airport!) and artist materials are collected like bark, logs, yidaki, carving wood etc. Another boring reality of business is trips to town to the post office, shops, etc.

But the bulk of that extra profit remained in our bank account to make sure we could continue buying art from the community without stress. This business is very seasonal, and during 2 of the 3 full financial years I've worked here, we had to stop buying for a month or so around April-May until we had more income to buy art from. This year we have had a good cushion so we've been secure to keep supporting the artists. It's horrible to have to tell artists we've got no money so they can't work! If we continue to have this "cushion" for a while, we'll work with the senior artists committee to develop a good project to spend it. As far as I know, such a surplus situation has only happened twice in the past 20 years. It's probably just a natural result of the growth of the business. It was only 4 or 5 years ago that the sales hit 1 million for the first time, then last year it hit 2. So there is indeed a greater profit to deal with than ever before that may require a change in our thinking. Of course, this year we won't make 2 million again. :cry:

There has been a big burst of cash before though - some of you may know our "Saltwater Book." Briefly, this was a collection of 80 bark paintings that toured the country then were purchased as a whole by the National Maritime Museum in Sydney for $300,000, in 3 payments. The first $100,000 was dispersed to the artists as per their wishes, before coming up with plans for the rest. That went into the building of the Mulka Project, our new multimedia centre which will address heaps of issues we haven't been able to tackle yet in terms of training of Yolngu, repatriation of museum and anthropological collections and documentation of culture. It's almost up and running, and I can't wait!!!

This is another reason for the change in our yidaki business to more of a wholesale model. I am shifting over to manage the multimedia centre, so there will be no full time yidaki manager. Sorry, but I'll be doing much more interesting things than being a salesman, and I believe much more important things addressing issues of education and cultural documentation that will be of more benefit to Yolngu in the long run than cash in their pockets right now. And this is a product of the art centre's business and an expansion of its aims.

The reason there is no Yolngu yidaki manager to take over has been alluded to. I'm too tired now to go into it all. Education is in crisis here, for one thing. But largely, as others have suggested, there's a lack of interest in dealing with it! No Yolngu are interested in discussing the back pressure of individual instruments over email, measuring mouth pieces, etc. They just know what they like, but aren't interested in talking about it in a foreign language! For the most part, they'd rather go back to their homeland and go fishing, or they've got ceremony and kinship responsibilities. As has been said here, there does need to be a go between who understands a bit of both the Yolngu and non-Yolngu didj worlds. At least for now, but maybe in the future that will change. Or maybe not, and the yidaki business will end. It's up the the Yolngu.

Okay, there's my giant report to try to answer as much I can. Congratulations if you read it all. A great deal of this is none of your collective damn business! But it's also not a secret and I have nothing to hide. Buku-Larrnggay Mulka is great. :-) As with anything else, not everything goes perfectly every day, and you don't have the support of all the people all the time, but I believe in it and love it or I wouldn't be here - living in this condemned house for 3.5 years, although I'm finally getting a non-condemned one in a few weeks. :D

So if you want authentic yidaki and you want to support the people at the origin as best you can, buy from the people who buy from Buku. Go team

If you don't want authentic yidaki, then piss off!

_________________
-Randin Graves


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PostPosted: 02.07.2007, 14:46 
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Thanks for that insight Randy :D


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