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Whangarei Art Museum/District Council Partnership

Media Release

Whangarei Arts, Culture And Hertage Strategic Development Plan

Whangarei Art Museum – Whangarei District Council
Parnership Initiative

Whangarei Art Museum, as a key player in the Creative Industries Report for the Northland Economic Strategy in 2001, and the Enterprise Northland ‘Putting Arts in the Regional Frame’ Northland arts sector strategy, is pleased to announce it has been successful in gaining significant funding from Te Papa National Services Te Paerangi in 2005.

In a joint partnership with council, Whangarei Art Museum, with $10,000 funding assistance from Te Papa National Services and equivalent funding from the Whangarei District Council, will develop with the Auckland-based consultants Creationz Consultants and with key stakeholders in the district, a Whangarei district strategy reflecting the rich diversity of its arts, heritage and cultural sector.

It is intended to identify the unique characteristics of our creative history and contemporary dynamism and capture these into a pathway forward together.
To build on regional strategies developed by Enterprise Northland, strengthen collaboration across the three sectors, strengthen relationships with the education, tourism and economic sectors, identify the best governance models for progressing the sector into the future, and strengthen capability across museums in the district such as the Clock Museum, Hikurangi Museum and the proposed Northland Medical Museum as well as the larger
Institutions within the district.

The Arts Strategy Steering committee consisting of councilors Williams, Williamson and Leiffering, art museum director Scott Pothan, Northland Polytechnic CEO Terry Barnett, Kiri Goulter of Enterprise Northland and Hilary Sumpter, Arts Promotion Trust and WDC Community Development Manager Agnes Hermans.

This committee after appraising the submissions awarded the contract to Helen Schamroth and Michael Smythe of Creationz Consultants on the basis of their considerable experience in this field, especially in the development of the arts strategy for Waitakere City which has subsequently won accolades and a Creative Places Award for its signature public art projects and festivals. Helen is also a member of the Arts Board of Creative New Zealand, highly respected arts writer for the New Zealand Herald for 8 years, author of the best-selling 100 NZ Craft Artists book and a curator, teacher and art award judge much in demand. The council and art museum are privileged to have this team together with the support of Te Papa National Services Te Paerangi to inspire an innovative and cohesive strategy for the heritage and creative sector in the district. An inclusive series of workshops, questionnaires and submissions, hui and one-on-one meetings is scheduled over the next three months with key stakeholders in the sector. A draft strategy for consultation will be completed late March 2006 with a final Strategy Document for council in May/June 2006.

This is an exciting opportunity to acknowledge the pioneering past and the intrepid artists, patrons and collectors and develop a future-proof plan for new initiatives in the sector.

Scott Pothan, WAM director says;

“Museums and galleries are the storehouse for cultural memory for our communities up and down the country; they are also at the leading edge of creative enterprise in their regions. This unique project will hopefully explore the synergies between arts policy, creative industries, economic development, regional and district branding and cultural tourism for Whangarei and its ‘cultural wellbeing’ by truly creating the ultimate living environment.”


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