Territory Stories

Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 14 February 2007



Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 14 February 2007

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Parliamentary Record 12


Debates for 10th Assembly 2005 - 2008; 10th Assembly 2005 - 2008; Parliamentary Record; ParliamentNT




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES Wednesday 14 February 2007 3880 do it with other industries, and there is no good reason why it should not extend to the arts - indigenous and non-indigenous. As I speak today, the code has not been finalised, but the principles have been out there for public comment for some months. They are principles to which we will be signing up. As well as encouraging the Commonwealth and other states and territory governments to sign up to the code, I will also be encouraging local government throughout the nation to engage ethically with Aboriginal visual artists and crafts people and, similarly, sign up to this new code. Since 2003, the Northern Territory government has been focused in its support to the Aboriginal visual arts and craft sector, particularly with the establishment of Australias first comprehensive indigenous arts strategy, Building Strong Arts Business. The Territory is now commencing the second part of this project. The policy acknowledges and promotes Aboriginal visual arts and craft as having economic as well as community development strands. For the first time, the new policy also recognises the primacy of cultural development. The Northern Territory government has considerably increased its funding to Aboriginal art since 2001. Prior to that time, funding to indigenous projects as a proportion of total NT arts sponsorship ran at about 11% - that was 2000-01 - and this jumped to over 16% or $425 000 the following year. Commitments under the indigenous arts strategy Building Stronger Arts Business are currently at $1.09m per annum. Building Stronger Arts Business recognises that the Northern Territory benefits from an exceptionally rich cultural heritage and that the cultural practices of indigenous Territorians reflect the ongoing and unbroken traditions of many millennia, as well as dynamic and changing approaches to artistic practices. It takes the position that Aboriginal arts and heritage industries are a significant part of the Northern Territorys economy directly through employment, marketing and sales, and indirectly in societal wellbeing, cultural strength and support for tourism. To quote from our Senate submission: Building Stronger Arts Business works from the stance that the arts sector is a significant employer and source of income, particularly in regional and remote areas where opportunities for market engagement are scarce. The sector supports a range of positive cultural and social outcomes through income generation, educational and training opportunities, and allowing people to remain on country to work together, engage in customary economic activity, and to share customary knowledge. In summary, Building Stronger Arts Business includes three pathways for the future development of indigenous art in the Northern Territory: negotiation and partnership - Talking Arts Business; service delivery - Doing Arts Business; and showcasing opportunities - Sharing Arts Business as follows: Talking Arts Business includes the need to develop strong and strategic partnerships with indigenous art practitioners and Commonwealth and Territory government sector organisations to ensure the sustainable growth of the sector. Doing Arts Business includes the provision of strong and culturally appropriate services to encourage arts development and to provide indigenous art practitioners with advice, support and opportunities for training and employment in the arts. Sharing Arts Business includes creating opportunities to promote and showcase the Territorys indigenous arts sector to local, national and international markets to maximise cultural and economic returns and to encourage respect and understanding of indigenous culture. Building Stronger Arts Business will shortly be entering its second stage after a review completed last year. The key initiatives for 2006 to 2009 have been developed, taking into account that community feedback indicated that the programs put in place in the previous three years are providing significant arts development outcomes and should be continued. These original initiatives include investment in arts development through the Arts Grants program, the Northern Territory Indigenous Music Awards, Desert Mob Marketplace and export opportunities developed in partnership with the Department of the Chief Minister. The additional initiatives for the next three years include: establishing and maintaining whole-of-government partnerships to deliver economic, social and cultural benefits to indigenous communities through the arts, in the areas of health, education, business development and tourism;

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