Music got me started

He’s been described in the local press as ‘a lawyer with a creative itch’, a tag that when mentioned over coffee with Uniview sees Michael Tucak break into a grin.

As principal lawyer at creative I legal, a specialist practice offering legal support and services to artists and innovators across the creative industries there’s no denying this UWA alumnus is an innovative force passionate about developing arts and culture in Perth and WA.

Given his multi-disciplinary background, with a double degree in law and science/geology at UWA, topped off with a Master of Entrepreneurship and Innovation from Swinburne University of Technology, it’s perhaps not surprising his skills bridge from law to arts and back again.

Michael says his love of arts law began as a young lawyer in the mid-nineties when he was working in Perth as a community radio broadcaster (he can still occasionally be heard presenting on radio RTRFM 92.1) and led to a inquisitiveness in the law as it applies to the creative arena.

While initially attracted to mining law, he went on to build experience in intellectual property, arts and commercial law working for companies including The Mushroom Group, SONY BMG and in private practice.

Michael Tucak                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Michael Tucak, lawyer with a creative itch. 

A councillor with the Town of Cottesloe, who stood as an Independent in the Cottesloe by-election to replace Colin Barnett, Michael could never be accused of lacking a sense of community.

He’s become a champion for assisting the creative sector in fighting for not only its rights but to retain government funding and its rightful place as a valued part of the fabric of WA life.

He’s a board member of the Chamber of Arts & Culture (WA), has been on the board of tactical media arts group PVI Collective since 2013 and was previously a board member at RTRFM 92.1, the Emerging Writer’s Festival in Melbourne, WAM (West Australian Music), AIDC and FringeWorld (ARTRAGE).

An ordinary day at creative I legal can range from advising on film or television rights, working on contracts for fashion designers and consulting with new ventures and startups.

“I’ve always had that need to interact with the community and to be involved in giving back, now I’m navigating a new world of creative arts in rapidly changing times” he says.

Creativity is so valuable and is really the ability to connect things that aren’t so immediately obvious.

“I believe these are essential to WA’s development and must be properly supported if we’re to unlock new opportunities in what has been historically a mining state. Putting creativity and arts at the core of areas like community, education and even energy brings a different perspective.”

In his ‘downtime’ Michael, who married a Sydney girl who he convinced to ‘come home’ to Perth also runs P.U.L.P. – a pop up legal practice that provides free legal advice to artists and not-for-profits in the creative sector.

As someone who was heavily involved in UWA’s many clubs and societies, he had this advice for students about to embark on their own careers, urging them to step outside of their comfort zone.

“I’d say take up interests as much as you can! Find your people and work out your beliefs and encourage a diversity of difference." 

Creative Lawyer Michael Tucak                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Man with a message, Michael Tucak.

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