Arts and Culture: National Context

  • The R4.6 billion budget allocated to the Department of Arts and Culture in 2019 is expected to increase to R5.1 billion by 2021/22.
  • According to Stats SA’s 2018 General Household Survey, isiZulu is South Africa’s most common home language (25%), followed by isiXhosa (15%) and Afrikaans (12%). English is only the sixth most common home language, at 8%.
  •  According to the South African Book Development Council, 58% of homes in the country do not own a single book.

Guidelines for Effective Funding in Arts and Culture

  •  When deciding where to invest, funders should consider not only where the project is based, but also where the intended participants and beneficiaries are located. Many productions and exhibitions are, or could be, touring projects.
  • Arts and culture is a vehicle for stimulating discussion on social issues that affect all South Africans, such as systemic inequality, gender-based violence and collective memory. Funders may not want to directly support advocacy, but can contribute to a vibrant democracy by supporting individuals or institutions that produce challenging literature, theatre, fine art, music and films.

National Directives for Arts and Culture

Arts, Culture and Heritage, 2017
This discussion document builds on a 1996 White Paper, aiming to effectively contribute to building
a cohesive and united society in which everyone has access to arts, culture and heritage, resources,
facilities and opportunities. This will be achieved through extending creative arts to peri-urban and rural
communities, forming various professional associations and networks with membership benefits and
development programmes, providing creative education and skills development programmes, expanding
market potential, developing beneficial partnerships, liaising with relevant government authorities for the
advancement of the sector, and participating in related activities that are beneficial to the sector.
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