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New minister aims for a more creative Victoria
While ministerial portfolios in new Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews' Government lack an arts minister role, the new position of Minister for Creative Industries aims to back all of the State's creative industries.
Former shadow Arts Minister Martin Foley, now in the Minister for Creative Industries, has ambitious plans to transfrom Victoria's cultural agency, Arts Victoria, into Creative Victoria, to redevelop the Geelong Performing Arts Centre and to meet Labour's election comitment to fund the restoration of St Kilda's Palais Theatre.
With a range of portfolios including housing, disability and ageing, mental health and equality, more than any other minister in Premier Andrews' new cabinet, Minister Foley has a considerable workload.
Explaining how will manage his ministerial portfolios, Minister Foley told The Age he would be "dedicating a particular amount of time (to each role), which is how I work.
"One of my first briefings (as a minister) is with the agencies, to discuss how they work together."
Of the perception that the arts portfolio has been downgraded, Foley told The Age "I'd say it's been upgraded.
"I see (the changes) as adding to the arts and culture and my goal is to make sure that it is taken more seriously in its own right and as a player in the State's future.
"I would say that a 30-year-old organisational structure, which is what Arts Victoria is, is still fundamentally a creature of the (former Victorian Premier Sir Rupert) Hamer era.
"Not only has Victoria changed, but the whole arts sector is significant enough to be a big player.
"That approach is reflective of where the sector's at and should be aspirationally."
Minister Foley added that his aspiration is for "every Victorian (to have) the opportunity and the immediate prospect of not only engaging with the arts and culture but that they see that as a legitimate part of who they are, (that) they have access to it and its democratising and inclusive force, and that they see it as one of a range of options they can develop as a career."
6th December 2014 - SPORT, TOURISM AND MAJOR EVENTS UNITED IN NEW VICTORIAN CABINET
26th November 2014 - LEISURE SPENDING AT FOREFRONT OF PARTY PROMISES IN VICTORIAN ELECTION
9th November 2014 - TEX PERKINS TO SEEK ELECTION IN BID TO PROTECT MELBOURNE’S PALAIS THEATRE
23rd September 2013 - INVESTING IN VICTORIA’S DYNAMIC ARTS ORGANISATIONS
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