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State Budget delivers $173 million in funding for the arts

The Palaszczuk Government will build a vibrant and sustainable arts industry for future generations with the introduction of a range of new initiatives and funding over the next four years.

Premier and Arts Minister Annastacia Palaszczuk said today’s Budget would invest in the future of arts, work to restore arts funding, and protect the heritage value of its cultural institutions.

“My government has vowed to return arts back to its rightful place and the future of arts in Queensland is now looking very positive,” the Premier said.
The government will provide a state contribution of $172.8 million in 2015-16 to the operating expenses of the Arts Portfolio including the arts statutory bodies – Queensland Museum, Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA), Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Screen Queensland and Queensland Theatre Company.

The Premier said Brisbane’s Cultural Precinct would receive an essential upgrade to support the significant tourism and economic returns it generates for Queensland.
“Over the next four years, an additional $28 million will be allocated to the Cultural Precinct to replace and renew essential services, including power supply, generators, climate control, and water systems,” the Premier said.

“It’s crucial that the Cultural Precinct, with some of its buildings and critical infrastructure now more than 30 years old, and recognised last month for its cultural heritage significance, can meet modern safety, security and accessibility standards.”

Ms Palaszczuk said $5.1 million over the next four years would go towards an exciting new program, Queensland Arts Showcase, to be rolled out through three streams.

“Arts Ignite supports the development and presentation of new performing arts works.

“Arts Illuminate aims to support Queensland communities to attract and engage high quality national or internationally renowned artists to present unique arts and cultural experiences

“Arts Impact will deliver a vibrant and diverse range of arts and cultural experiences to communities across the State,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“At the heart of the new program is a commitment to provide a vibrant and accessible arts and cultural sector in Queensland that connects with and develops new audiences at home and abroad,” she said.

“Queensland Arts Showcase will focus on creating employment and training opportunities for Queensland based artists and arts workers while supporting collaborations to provide quality arts and cultural experiences.”

The Budget will also include $1.7 million for QAGOMA to support an exhibition program during its 10th anniversary celebrations.

 “QAGOMA’s top 10 exhibitions since opening have contributed more than $100 million to the Queensland economy, and we want to ensure it continues to attract exclusive exhibitions,” she said.
Ms Palaszczuk said $11.2 million over the next four years would safeguard programs slated to end in 2014-15  and will provide some additional support for the small to medium sector through continuation of the Backing Indigenous Arts initiative and the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy.

The Queensland Museum’s state-wide Museum Resource Centre Network will also continue with $2 million over four years for local museums across Queensland, many of which are run by local volunteers.

“Queensland now has a government that recognises the importance of an accessible and dynamic arts sector in generating economic and social returns for Queenslanders,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“Today’s Budget reflects our commitment to ensure Queensland is best placed to be a leader in the arts on a local, national and international level.”