Here at the Three Lakes Cultural Trust, our vision is for our community to be a powerhouse of arts, culture and creativity. We exist to support and facilitate the building of the creative sector through infrastructure, capability and capacity in the Queenstown Lakes District. We work to ensure arts, culture and creativity matter now and into the future.
Did you know, we’re also a member of the Regional Arts Network Aotearoa (RANA)? A small group of independent, not-for-profit organisations established in different regions across Aotearoa, RANA advocates for arts, culture and heritage throughout the country, helping to guide and support sustainable development. Together, these organisations work to make the regional arts and culture scene even stronger, in turn contributing to the well-being and resilience of our communities.
The arts and culture sector in Aotearoa is facing significant challenges, a concern that is widely acknowledged within the creative community. While New Zealanders value investing in arts, culture, and creativity and recognise the positive impact on public well-being, there is still a need for a more balanced allocation of resources and support for cultural endeavours.
Here are some key issues we’re facing as highlighted by RANA:
- Research by Creative New Zealand highlights that individuals in creative professions earn a median income of $19,500 solely from their creative work, significantly lower than the $61,800 median for salaried employees.
- Creative New Zealand is not projected to receive additional core funding.
- The Arts and Culture COVID Recovery Programme by Manatū Taonga Ministry of Culture and Heritage is nearing its conclusion.
- There is an ongoing reduction in resources for tertiary performing arts programmes and a lack of clear career paths for those interested in the field.
- Currently, there is no established strategy to foster growth and sustainability within the sector.
And yet, there’s room for change. And RANA has stepped up to lead the charge with their new initiative, Arts Action Now.
A national arts, culture and creativity strategy
Arts Action Now is proposing a national strategy for arts and culture, which will serve as a roadmap for purposeful growth and investment in the arts sector. The strategy will play a vital role in shaping decisions regarding important aspects like education and sustainable career paths. It also provides direction for government, local authorities, philanthropic organisations, and businesses to channel their resources where they can make the most meaningful impact.
Arts, culture and creativity in Aotearoa hold immense significance. They enrich our individual and community well-being, offer profound insights into our shared experiences and backgrounds, and unite us across our diverse society. They also help us connect with a more global community, fueling thriving creative industries including television, film, music and media. That’s why it’s so important to have a clear vision for the creative sector, addressing its current needs and guiding its progress.
Why do we need a strategy?
An Aotearoa Arts, Culture and Creativity strategy would provide a framework for the intentional development of the sector’s future at a national and regional level.
The strategy would:
- Be informed by data to clarify the current state of the sector
- Inform policy and facilitate and align investment
- Affirm the value of arts, culture, and creative work in its own right as well as its contributions to community hauora/wellbeing, and the creative economy
- Express a clear government ambition for the sector, and enable an aligned cross-Ministry, and central-to-local government approach to the sector. Ministries would include the Ministry of Education, Business, Innovation and Employment, Health, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Social Development
- Identify the regional infrastructure needed for local activation to strengthen reach, grow community access and participation build inclusion, and develop sector capability and the wider ecosystem
- Set out a framework for how success will be measured
- Provide the information required to develop a sector investment plan
Strategy development and process
The creation of this strategy would involve getting input from various groups, including from the national and regional sectors as well as people from relevant ministries, local government, and others in the creative world.
An approach from te ao Māori for the development of the strategy would address:
- Kaupapa – principles and ideas which act as a base or foundation for the strategy
- Whakapapa – ‘Whakapapa’ means to place in layers, a process of building layer by layer upon the past towards the present, and on into the future.
- Tikanga – people hold the process and protocols that make the kaupapa of the plan actionable.
- Wairua – people connect to the plan – it is inspirational
- Hua – when the wairua is moved then a contribution is made to the wellbeing of the environment, our social connections, and cultural and spiritual wellbeing. It also attracts and is supported by financial resources
Have your say
Now, RANA is inviting you to have your say in an Aotearoa Arts, Culture and Creativity Strategy. This is an important undertaking, designed to represent all the voices in our nation with an interest in the arts and culture scene. To have your say and contribute to the strategy, you can join one of two wānanga taking place in early October.
These wānanga are an open invitation to ringatoi, artists, creatives, makers, shakers, cultural activists, and anyone from the creative communities, to contribute to a collective call for an Aotearoa Arts Culture and Creativity Strategy, to be developed with the next elected government.
The wānanga will be facilitated by Kelcy Taratoa, Ngā toi Māori Navigator at Creative Bay of Plenty – TE WAKA AUAHA TOI and Elyssia Wilson-Heti, Activist, Interdisciplinary Artist, Producer, 2020 Arts Laureate and member of the arts collective FAFSWAG.
The kōrero from the wānanga will inform a sector briefing for the next Minister for Arts and Culture, as well as any other relevant Ministry.
Wednesday 4 October
6:30pm – 8pm
Saturday 7 October
1pm – 2:30pm
Together, let’s envision and create a future where the arts not only survive but thrive, nurturing the well-being of our communities and connecting us across diverse perspectives. Join RANA in this important journey towards a more vibrant and sustainable creative sector in Aotearoa.
Get in touch with the team for more information.