South African Cultural Observatory
University of Fort Hare

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Department of Arts and Culture

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Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University

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Rhodes University

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SPECIAL FEATURES

South African Cultural Observatory

The South African Cultural Observatory is the national public research entity of the Department of Arts & Culture. Cultural domains such as arts, tourism, heritage, libraries and museums will be researched on in order to build intellectual capacity across these sectors.

The key functions of the South African Cultural Observatory include the following:

  • Policy focused research (surveys, case studies)
  • Reviews of current programmes
  • M&E – impact of government spending
  • Collection of statistics (databases)
  • Physical and Online access
  • Networking, sharing, partnerships

Word from DAC

2017/18 Budget Vote Speech - Minister Nathi Mthethwa

SPEECH by Minister Nathi Mthethwa at the Arts and Culture 2017/18 Budget Vote, Parliament, Cape Town. "Today, we meet here on a day which has significance in our history as the 23rd May marks the 23 anniversary of admission of our country as the 53rd member state of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) now African Union (AU), in Tunis, Tunisia. It was at this historic gathering that Former President Nelson Mandela made the following commitments to heads of state and government..."

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Latest News

SA Cultural Observatory brings workshop series to Pietermaritzburg

IN THE second instalment of what is an eight-stop national roadshow, the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO) heads to Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal to share insights into the organisation, its research and tools.

Mzansi's Golden Economy a rare commodity, Bra Ray Phiri, continues to live among us

WHEN a colossal like Bra Ray Phiri passes on, a part of you does go because he has been part of our lives as long as we can remember. Growing up in the townships the music of Ray Chikapa Phiri gave us hope and inspired us that a better tomorrow is possible.

DAC Debut Programme in partnership with BASA

ARE you an emerging arts and culture organisation or individual who is active in the community, with a project/venture? Do you think your project/venture has the potential to grow? Are you between the ages of 18-35? Are you based in the Eastern Cape, Gauteng or the Free State?

The other side of SA fashion

INTERROGATING the world of South African fashion, photographer Johnny Lai Sang has produced images of rare complexity. On the one hand, full of the glitter and glamour of this world and yet on the other hand, a murky, darker, shadow-side emerges. This is captured through an understanding of his craft where contrasts of colour, intensity of light, the ability to focus and yet not focus the lens and an eye for alternative perspectives and vantage points contribute to an interesting show, one well worth a visit.

DAC Minister launches Debut Fund Programme for young artists

ARTS and Culture Minister, Mr. Nathi Mthethwa on Thursday, 13 July 2017 launched the Debut Fund Programme for emerging artists at Nangoza Jebe Community Hall in Port Elizabeth. The Fund seeks to strengthen knowledge and skills development for young artists and also give them opportunities to apply for funding to further support their ventures. The Programme is a partnership between the Department of Arts and Culture (DAC) and the Business Association of South Africa (BASA).

Be kind. Please rewind.

A NEW vision, one that focuses on the medium of film and video, a first for this country, is perplexing, riveting and surprising all at the same time. The gallery blurb describes the show as one that “seeks to explore the various complexities of video’s relationship to the construction and perception of history and memory”.


Note from the Culturalist - CEO

Young, free and creative

YOUNG people will shape the cultural and creative economy of the future. While they have always been at the forefront of the culture and content of cool, now more than ever it is important to consider the value, power and role of the youth in building and sustaining this economy.

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The 360: News from around the world

Diversity & the decolonisation of SA’s creative industries

IT WAS Youth Month in June – and a time for critical reflection on the role the youth, a perennial target of and key player in the creative and cultural industries (CCI).

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Open Source: Latest research for download

NFVF study reveals SA film industry has a positive impact on the economy

THE National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) has released findings of their second Economic Impact Assessment study which reveals the industry’s economic contribution to the country’s GDP over a four-year period. The study, conducted by Urban Econ in the 2016/17 financial year, identifies and quantifies the economic impact of the film and television industry between January 2013 to March 2017.

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Progress Report: Updates on CO achievements

SA Cultural Observatory launches national workshop series in East London

OFF the back of a wildly successful national conference in May, the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO) kicks off a nationwide roadshow of eight domain workshops in East London in July.

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More News
‘Creative Industries can drive economic growth, job creation’ – report‘Creative Industries can drive economic growth, job creation’ – report

SOUTH African Cultural Observatory (SACO) Chief Research Strategist Prof Jen Snowball’s recent paper with Serge Hasidi on cultural employment in South Africa explores the role of the Cultural and Creative Industries (CCIs) in facilitating job creation and economic growth in South Africa.

The Market Theatres scoops Festival accoladesThe Market Theatres scoops Festival accolades

THE MARKET Theatre is South Africa’s leading creative hub for creating and presenting thought-provoking, inspiring and original South African theatre of the highest standard. Both productions on the Festival’s fringe programme have won the Standard Bank Fringe Ovation Award.

Fibreglass moulds for cartoon characters availableFibreglass moulds for cartoon characters available

TROUBADOUR Productions, the long-standing Durban costume hiring business, has had to close.

A day at seaA day at sea

HIGHLY relevant, this exhibition focuses on the plight of refugees, particularly from Africa who against terrible odds try to cross the Mediterranean and enter Europe. The treacherous waters combined with some harsh policies of the EU, notwithstanding Germany’s more open policy, has often lead to countless deaths, including children. The works by photographer Martina Gruber and paintings/mixed media work by the more well-known Zimbabwean artist Gillian Rosselli speak to these sensitive issues.

ACT announces appointment of new CEOACT announces appointment of new CEO

THE Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) is pleased to announce that artist and arts manager, Marcus Desando, has been appointed as its new CEO.

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