South Waikato Arts and Culture
Art is clearly visible all over the district. From the corrugated iron art in Tīrau and the murals and mosaics in Putāruru, to the Talking Poles in Tokoroa art is a way of life in this district.
The South Waikato District Council views culture as 'the spirit of the community' and arts as 'the expression of that spirit.'
Council's Arts and Cultural Policy is designed to enrich life in the district by providing an environment in which the art and diverse cultures of the people can flourish. By considering art and culture to be part of the wellbeing of the community, the Council is able to increase opportunities for active participation in arts, cultural activities and events held during the course of the year. Council provides support and information to individuals and groups involved in the arts to improve their effectiveness and develop a higher profile for the arts and culture in the area.
The benefits of an active artistic and cultural life affect every sector of the community. Acknowledgement is frequently made of the unique place that Māori, as the Tangata Whenua have, and continue to make, to our district.
The protection, enhancement and promotion of our heritage are also important to our future wellbeing. Council encourages the different ethnic communities in the South Waikato to celebrate their culture. The associated art forms weave a rich tapestry into our lives, making the district a more exciting and vibrant community.
The South Waikato District Council aims to:
- actively encourage and support a lively and progressive arts and cultural environment
- foster a strong and positive identity which reflects the unique cultural character of the South Waikato
- facilitate and co-ordinate artistic and cultural expression
- encourage participation and the expression of the cultural heritage of Māori, Pacific Island and other ethnic groups within the South Waikato
- provide opportunities to enable the whole community to participate in and appreciate the artistic and cultural activities of the district
- enable the optimum use and development of facilities for cultural activities
- support information, marketing and planning initiatives
- preserve and enhance existing cultural, heritage and natural resources
- secure financial and other resources, both from within and outside the community, to assist the achievement of these goals.
Council recognises and celebrates the diversity of culture, age and difference through many art activities. The Community Development team works with local organisations and communities to implement and develop Council's Arts and Cultural Policy. Together we bring the culture and art of the local people to life.
For more information contact the Community Development team.