Koskela believes that great design can be used to effect social change.
When Sasha Titchkosky and Russel Koskela left corporate careers to create Koskela they wanted to create a company that represented their values and had a purpose bigger than the mere pursuit of profits. Koskela has a firm belief that Australia’s unique Indigenous culture is one that needs to be celebrated and acknowledged.
The way we have chosen to do this is to create opportunities for Indigenous artists and artisans to collaborate with us, using their skills to create new contemporary design products. This allows the artists to continue to live a life they have chosen to lead, maintaining their traditional practices by creating an alternate income source, independent of any Government funding.
We have been doing this since 2009 when we created Yuta Badayala with the artists from Elcho Island Arts. We now have collaborations with the Tjanpi weavers, Milingimbi Arts, Warlukurlangku Artists, Durrmu Arts and the artists of Yarrenyty Arltere - all Aboriginal and Torres-Strait Islander owned and managed Art Centres.
As a registered member of the Indigenous Art Code, Koskela is committed to preserving and promoting ethical trade in Indigenous art. The communities we work with are paid in excess for what they normally receive for their artworks and woven goods. To further the development of these opportunities, from 2017 onwards Koskela has committed an additional 1% of all other Koskela product sales to go towards developing more of these projects with Australian Indigenous communities.
This 1% is derived from the sale of other Koskela items such as our sofas, tables, and furniture, plus our work on corporate projects, equating to roughly 10% of profits.
Work with Aboriginal and Torres-Strait Islander owned and managed Art Centres and their artist members
Provide art centres and artists with written agreements based on the 'best practice' samples provided by the Arts Law Centre of Australia
Conduct business with Aboriginal and Torres-Strait Islander protocols in place
Uphold the cultural and intellectual property rights of the artist
Conduct business according to the Indigenous Art Code.
Koskela is a registered member of the Indigenous Art Code. The Indigenous Art Code is a system to preserve and promote ethical trading in Indigenous art. The Code supports the rights of Indigenous Artists to negotiate fair terms for their work and gives buyers greater certainty about an artwork’s origin.