Together, we will promote a society rich in art and culture
Arts and Culture Norway's new strategy aims to foster an innovative and diverse cultural life that is used and appreciated by more people.
"Through our new strategy, we wish to emphasise, and thereby reinforce, the role of art and culture in society. We wish to highlight the impact that public investment in culture has and the value it creates," says Kristin Danielsen, Director of Arts and Culture Norway, the government agency that supports arts and cultural projects nationwide.
The strategy comprises a vision and three primary goals:
- An innovative and diverse cultural life
- Increased engagement with art and culture by more people
- Art and culture are valued highly by society
These three ambitions will guide the steps we take to realise Arts and Culture Norway's overarching vision: "a society rich in art and culture".
Culture should challenge us all
Democracy and community are fundamental pillars of Norwegian society. Culture binds us together in a community that transcends regional, social and ethnic divides, and inspires us all to challenge ourselves. It gives us necessary friction. At the same time, culture is a barometer for freedom of expression and a precondition for an enlightened public discourse. This is the background for Arts and Culture Norway's new organisational strategy.
It will help us make good choices when it comes to prioritising the work we do to fulfil our social mandate and achieve our overarching objectives.
The purpose of Arts Council Norway (ACN) is to promote contemporary society's artistic and cultural expression and help ensure that art and culture are created, preserved, documented and made accessible to as many people as possible. To succeed in this, we must make use of a range of different tools.
We must constantly bring to the table new and updated knowledge that will develop the field and form the basis for sound cultural policy decisions. In addition, we are working to increase diversity among artists as well as audiences. It is also important for us to see the impact of art and culture on other areas of society, says Danielsen.
The new organisational strategy is built on a robust foundation comprising an analysis of the external situation, in-depth interviews with our main stakeholders and the expectations expressed by the Ministry of Culture and Equality and Arts and Culture Norway's own employees. The entire organisation has been involved in the process and has discussed goals and vision through workshops, staff meetings and ballots. All this has culminated in the strategy now being presented.
"We have a lot to be proud of in the cultural field, and there are many good initiatives that deserve both attention and dependable funding. We will now continue working to strengthen and develop the sector. We want as many people as possible to be able to create, use and love art and culture," says Danielsen.
At the same time, Arts and Culture Norway's own opinion poll shows a fall in support for the funding of public arts and culture.
"We are concerned that publicly funded art and culture has become less popular among younger age groups in particular. As the public body tasked with supporting this sector in Norway, we have an important job to do here. It is one that we will take seriously in our work going forward," says Danielsen.