The Hobart City Council plays a leading role in facilitating community and cultural development by working with the community to identify needs and undertake appropriate activities.
The Hobart City Council recently undertook a review of its current Arts and Cultural Strategy, which dates back to 2002.
The project has been undertaken by Brecknock Consulting Pty Ltd, led by Richard Brecknock, a highly experienced cultural planner with over 40 years of involvement in the arts.
As part of the project, the Council undertook a comprehensive consultation which included:
- focus group workshops with arts practitioners and cultural sector stakeholders;
- an advertised online survey of arts practitioners and community members; and
- consultation with particular groups in the community, including children and young people.
The consultation phase has highlighted a clear message from the arts sector in particular, that the Council should move its priorities from being a provider of cultural activities, to being a supporter, partner and promoter of activities initiated by the cultural sector; expand the range of cultural and arts activities that it supports; and play a greater role in gathering and disseminating information about Hobart's cultural life.
Draft Cultural Strategy Framework
Brecknock Consulting has now consolidated this reseach and analysed the result in a detailed Discussion Paper. The Cultural Strategy Framework outlines a new approach to the delivery of the Council's cultural programs, titled: 'Creative Hobart - A Strategic Framework for Hobart City Council's Cultural Programs'.
This new focus would be on new and expanded programs that will better support the broader cultural sector, including cultural practice that engages the wider community.
This could mean for example, in the first year of the Strategy implementation, undertaking the following initiatives:
- bringing the visual arts out of the current gallery context and into the urban and natural environment of our city, through a program of changing artworks exhibited on billboards, light boxes and temporary exhibition spaces;
- supporting the performing arts through improving access to Council owned facilities and spaces;
- encouraging new ideas and debate around cultural issues through a possible residency program at Dorney House on Porter Hill;
- working with the sector to expand the opportunities for children and young people to engage in cultural activities; and
- increasing the promotion of cultural and arts activities through a new online information provision initiative.
In order to resource these new areas of activity, the Strategic Framework recommends a withdrawal from some of the Council's current direct delivery programs, including the Carnegie Gallery and the City of Hobart Art Prize.
Both the Discussion Paper and the draft Strategic Framework were endorsed by the Council at its meeting of 30 April 2012, with these documents released for public comment in line with the Council's Community Engagement Framework.
Council received approximately 100 responses to the draft Framework and Discussion Paper. Thank you to everyone who took the time to participate in this process.
These responses are now being collated and a new draft Cultural Strategy and Action Plan will be prepared in the near future.
Enquiries about the the review process may be directed to Jane Castle, Cultural Programs Coordinator on (03) 6238 2767 or firstname.lastname@example.org