Minister for the Arts (New South Wales)

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Minister for the Arts
Coat of Arms of New South Wales.svg
Incumbent
Don Harwin

since 30 January 2017
Arts NSW
Style The Honourable
Nominator Premier of New South Wales
Appointer Governor of New South Wales
Inaugural holder George Freudenstein
(as the Minister for Cultural Activities)
Formation 11 March 1971

The New South Wales Minister for the Arts is a Minister of the Crown in the New South Wales Government administering Arts NSW within the Department of Justice. The Minister has responsibilities for the administration and support for the arts in New South Wales. The current minister is the Hon. Don Harwin MLC, since 30 January 2017.[1]

Office history[edit]

The role of an 'arts' minister, overseeing the management and support for all cultural activities in New South Wales, before the early 1970s was an unheard of concept in politics. However, by the early 1970s, various governments in Australia recognised the need for a steering authority for state support for the arts. In response, premier Bob Askin appointed George Freudenstein as the first Minister for Cultural Activities on 11 March 1971. This coincided with the appointment of the first federal minister with a responsibility for the arts on 10 March and a Minister for Cultural Affairs in Western Australia on 3 March 1971. Premier of Victoria Rupert Hamer commissioned himself with a ministry of the arts in 1972 and South Australia followed suit on 18 September 1979.

On his appointment Freudenstein requested the establishment of an organisation to enable him to carry out his responsibilities and the Premier agreed. On 13 May 1971 the "Ministry of Cultural Activities" was established, taking over responsibility for various legislation and bodies that had previously been under the purview of the Department of Education, including the Archives Office of New South Wales, Art Gallery of New South Wales, State Library of New South Wales, Australian Museum, Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, Sydney Observatory, the Advisory Committee on Cultural Grants, NSW Film Council, and the Sydney Opera House Trust. In the case of the opera house, the Ministry had responsibility for its completion and final official opening on 20 October 1973.[2] With Freudenstein's departure on 3 January 1975, a new Minister for Culture, Sport and Recreation was appointed and on 6 January 1975, the Ministry of Cultural Activities was replaced by the new "Department of Culture, Sport and Recreation".[3]

This arrangement lasted until 14 May 1976 when the new Labor Government of Neville Wran transferred the responsibility for cultural activities to the Premier's Department. This became the "Cultural Activities Division" under the administration of the Premier himself.[3] This situation continued until 1984, when Wran established the "Office of the Minister for the Arts" within the Premier's Department and commissioned himself with the title of Minister for the Arts. On 15 June 1988 a "Ministry for the Arts" independent of the Premier's Department was established.[4] This ministry was abolished on 3 March 2006 and its responsibilities were moved to the new "Department of the Arts, Sport and Recreation".[5] Arts NSW became the new dedicated division for the Minister and it transferred to "Communities NSW" in July 2009 and then the "Department of Trade and Investment, Regional Infrastructure and Services" from 4 April 2011.[6] Since the appointment of Troy Grant as the minister in 2014 (who also served as Minister for Justice and Police), Arts NSW has been within the Justice Department.

List of ministers[edit]

The following individuals have been appointed Minister for the Arts or any of its precursor titles.[7]

Minister Party affiliation Ministerial title Term start Term end Time in office
George Freudenstein Country Minister for Cultural Activities 11 March 1971 3 January 1975 3 years, 298 days
John Barraclough Liberal Minister for Culture, Sport and Recreation 3 January 1975 23 January 1976 1 year, 20 days
David Arblaster 23 January 1976 14 May 1976 82 days
Neville Wran Labor Minister for the Arts 10 February 1984 4 July 1986 2 years, 144 days
Frank Walker 4 July 1986 21 March 1988 1 year, 261 days
Peter Collins Liberal 25 March 1988 4 April 1995 7 years, 10 days
Bob Carr Labor 4 April 1995 3 August 2005 10 years, 121 days
Bob Debus 3 August 2005 2 March 2007 1 year, 211 days
Frank Sartor 2 April 2007 5 September 2008 1 year, 156 days
Nathan Rees 8 September 2008 4 December 2009 1 year, 87 days
Virginia Judge 8 December 2009 28 March 2011 1 year, 116 days
George Souris National 3 April 2011 23 April 2014 3 years, 20 days
Troy Grant 23 April 2014 30 January 2017 2 years, 282 days
Don Harwin Liberal 30 January 2017 incumbent 89 days

Former ministerial titles[edit]

Assistant Ministers[edit]

Minister Party affiliation Ministerial title Term start Term end Time in office
Bob Debus Labor Minister Assisting the Premier on the Arts 13 March 1996 2 April 2003 7 years, 20 days
Frank Sartor 2 April 2003 3 August 2005 2 years, 123 days
Virginia Judge Labor Minister Assisting the Premier on the Arts 8 September 2008 4 December 2009 1 year, 87 days

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Refreshed NSW cabinet sworn in". Sky News. Australia. AAP. 30 January 2017. Retrieved 30 January 2017. 
  2. ^ "Ministry of Cultural Activities". NSW State Records. NSW Government. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  3. ^ a b "Department of Culture, Sport and Recreation". NSW State Records. NSW Government. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  4. ^ "Ministry for the Arts". NSW State Records. NSW Government. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  5. ^ "Department of the Arts, Sport and Recreation". NSW State Records. NSW Government. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  6. ^ "Arts NSW". NSW State Records. NSW Government. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  7. ^ "NSW Parliamentary Record (11 August 1824 - November 2007)" (PDF). Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly. Parliament of New South Wales. VIII. November 2007. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 

External links[edit]