About Arts, culture & Heritage

Creative heart of the city

Joburg is the country’s cultural hub, with a host of galleries, theatres and museums. And it’s the City's department of arts, culture and heritage services that ensures that all Joburg’s communities are provided with creative and cultural outlets.



Vision and mission

ALL art forms offer a sanctuary from degrading poverty and despair, and engagement in the arts gives communities hope and nurtures their souls.

The national thrust is focused on the transformation of arts, culture and heritage institutions, addressing the shortcomings of the past and facing the challenges of the future, ensuring equity. It is committed to promoting a consciousness that celebrates diversity.

Exhibition  at  Museum Africa
Exhibition at Museum Africa
The key objectives of arts, culture and heritage, at national government level, are:

  • The provision of arts, culture and heritage infrastructure;
  • Human resource development;
  • Promotion of greater access to public funds to support the creation and dissemination of art;
  • Development of new markets and audiences for arts, culture and heritage;
  • Unlocking of funding for arts, culture and heritage;
  • Creation of awareness and appreciation of the arts, culture and heritage; and
  • Promotion of diversity.

City of Johannesburg

Reflections at the Joburg Art Gallery
Reflections at the Joburg Art Gallery
The City’s department of arts, culture and heritage services is responsible for the protection, conservation and proclamation of the unique and diverse cultural heritage of South Africans in Johannesburg.

It looks after the city's museums, historic sites and buildings, and co-ordinates and presents arts events and festival programmes.

Over and above these functions, the department plays a critical role in economic, social and urban regeneration.

The core business is:
  • The Arts
    This function involves facilitating the development, co-ordination, celebration and preservation of all forms of artistic expression.
  • Culture
    This function involves developing and implementing an economic strategy which is geared towards co-ordinating and facilitating cultures to develop creative industries.
  • Heritage
    The function of heritage involves the conservation, presentation and improvement of places and objects protected in terms of the National Heritage Resources Act.


Remembering  16 June 1976
Remembering 16 June 1976

Business focus

“A diverse African arts, culture and heritage Mecca”


“Arts, culture and heritage services within the City of Joburg in the creation of an enabling environment for the conservation, showcasing and celebration of arts, culture and heritage through dynamic sustainable programmes and projects for the enrichment of local, national and international communities.”


Strategic outcomes
The department has identified the following medium- to long-term strategic outcomes:

  • Enhanced value of the City’s historic buildings and sites;
  • Increased usage of museums and galleries;
  • Representative and quality collections and exhibitions;
  • Successful arts events and projects;
  • Increased public participation in the arts;
  • Develop cultural industry strategies and programmes, in partnership with the economic development unit;
  • Develop understanding of art as an essential part of human survival and growth; and
  • Increase participation in arts, culture and heritage educational programmes and activities.