Extending Victoria's impact and profile for global audiences, visitors and markets
Victoria contributes to, and is shaped by, the wider global community. To be a confident, outward-looking state, it is imperative that we continue to deepen our engagement globally and connect with ideas and influences beyond our borders.
The most successful creative places operate on an international stage, connecting with overseas partners, collaborators and audiences. Global engagement amplifies opportunities for ideas and inspiration, for collaboration and trade, for talent attraction and tourism, for cultural relationships and diplomacy.
International markets are vital for Victorian creators and, in some cases, the primary focus. For example, more than 90 per cent of Victorian digital games product is developed for a global audience, which is growing at 5.7 per cent per annum and expected to be worth more than US$93 billion by 2019. Growth in Asian markets, in particular, continues to outpace most international economies and presents ongoing potential for trade, tourism and cultural engagement. Victoria's strongest exports are in services, highlighting the ongoing opportunity to increase creative services exports, particularly in the design sector.
Victoria is internationally known for exceptional cultural infrastructure and experiences – our large-scale cultural events and exhibitions, vibrant small to medium sector and thriving independent scenes, such as music, theatre and the visual arts. This cultural offering draws tourists from across Australia and the world and is central to our liveability and international brand. It is also key to attracting and retaining the world's top talent.
On these foundations, Victoria can continue to build a larger international market, expand its touring programs and international relationships, strengthen its brand and draw increasing benefits.
These foundations are also a basis for building on Melbourne's status as a culturally-rich and outwardly-focused city. Melbourne already has an enviable international brand as the most liveable city in the world. In part, this relies on the quality and depth of our creative talent and cultural assets. We want to see Melbourne continue to develop as a major global city, to be recognised and visited for its remarkable cultural programming and assets.
The Victorian Government undertakes inbound and outbound trade missions, delivers major trade and cultural events that draw visitors and investment to the state. It maintains a network of international offices to support Victorian organisations in key markets like China, Indonesia, India, Europe and the United States. The flagship Victoria Invitation Program provides a platform to showcase Victoria's creative industries strengths. A new marketing strategy for the state, to be implemented by Visit Victoria, will leverage cultural programming and assets to grow Victoria's visitor economy and jobs in metropolitan and regional areas.
Learn about the progress of Creative State Actions 29-34, worth $5.05 million over four years, to see how we are boosting Victoria's international reputation and creative profile, stimulating tourism, trade and investment, connecting Victorian talent and creative businesses to the world and strengthening global opportunities for our creators and artists.
A major study into establishing Melbourne as a world-renowned cultural tourism destination, based on having the right mix of cultural infrastructure, organisations, programming and investment. This will include a fresh approach to management and investment in the state's $2 billion portfolio of cultural infrastructure.
Boston Consulting Group (BCG) was commissioned to undertake a major study into establishing Melbourne as a world-renowned cultural tourism destination and a global creative city.
The resulting report assesses Melbourne's current standing as a creative and cultural city in a global context. It considers Melbourne's strengths and weaknesses, relative to other cities around the world and specifically in the Asia Pacific region, and recommends areas to focus on in order to boost the city's position.
The report ranks Melbourne as the number one cultural destination in Australia, number three in the Asia Pacific and number 12 worldwide. It also found that:
- Outside of visiting family and friends, arts and culture are Melbourne's biggest tourism driver.
- Regional Victoria and New South Wales are currently the biggest source of cultural tourists to Melbourne.
- China is the city's biggest and fastest growing international market for cultural tourism and is expected to be worth $1-2 billion by 2025.
The report identifies five strategic priorities to increase Melbourne's position: increasing consumer awareness of Melbourne and improving the way cultural events and activities are marketed and promoted; protecting existing infrastructure; optimising the current cultural offering; expanding the cultural offer; and enhancing governance to improve collaboration between organisations and institutions.
The findings will help guide the Victorian Government and its creative industries and tourism bodies in relation to infrastructure, programming, marketing and governance approaches and priorities.
Building MIGW into the pre-eminent digital games event in the region. Anchored by PAX AUS and the Game Connect Asia Pacific Conference, MIGW will connect international attendees with Victorian talent through one of the most extensive consumer and industry games events in the world.
The second Melbourne International Games Week (MIGW) ran from 29 October to 7 November 2016. In a short time the Week has become Asia Pacific's largest digital games platform for entertainment, serious games and gamification.
MIGW comprises events for the digital games development industry, games enthusiasts, educators and the general public. In addition to the marquee events, such as consumer expo PAX AUS and industry conference Game Connect Asia Pacific (GCAP), the 2016 program included Games – A Family Affair, featuring a range of family friendly game play opportunities, the Education in Games Summit, and the Women in Games Lunch.
Of the 60,000 attendees at MIGW 2016, approximately 13.6% were international visitors. Much of PAX AUS was live streamed via Twitch, a global social video platform for gamers. More than 580,000 unique views were recorded on Twitch, representing a 43% increase in activity from 2015. This has helped broaden the reach and recognition of MIGW internationally and generate interest in attendance.
MIGW 2016 provided direct economic benefit to the local games industry. Thirteen local games companies received Victorian Government support to exhibit at PAX AUS, all secured direct sales or serious business interest as a result of exhibiting. Grants are currently available for local companies to exhibit at PAX AUS 2017.
Melbourne International Games Week 2017 will take place from 22 to 29 October.
Targeted missions to key markets to establish new industry links and advance international engagement and trade. Mission participants will also be supported with guidance on developing export markets and planning offshore activities.
This action has seen Creative Victoria partner with Trade Victoria and Victorian Government Business Offices, located around the world, to plan or lead a series of trade mission-style visits to a number of key locations.
We have also worked to ensure that trade missions in other portfolio areas include creative and cultural activities or opportunities for creative practitioners.
With support through Creative State, the following activities have been undertaken:
- In September 2016, representatives from State Library of Victoria, Melbourne Museum and Chamber Made Opera took part in the Premier's visit to China and Japan. During the trip, the State Library signed a partnership with its counterpart organisation in Chengdu, Sichuan and Melbourne Museum signed an agreement with its counterpart in Japan. This trip also included a business networking event for filmmakers, a collaborative performance by Chamber Made Opera with the Sichuan Conservatory of Music, and the announcement of a major tour to Melbourne of the China National Ballet performing The Red Detachment of Women as part of AsiaTOPA.
- In November 2016, Creative Victoria, partnered with the Design Institute of Australia to lead a Victorian design delegation to Hong Kong Business of Design Week, one of the biggest design events on the global calendar (see Action 19). Melbourne has since been selected as the partner city for the 2018 Hong Kong Business of Design Week, and delegations are planned for both the 2017 and 2018 events.
- In March 2017, the Minister for Creative Industries led a delegation of 57 Victorian games industry representatives to the 2017 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, the world's largest annual gathering of professional game developers. Ten of these companies also travelled to Boston to take part in the leading games expo PAX East. Companies that took part in the trip showcased new titles and new technologies or sought to make new business connections.
- In March 2017, Creative Victoria's Chief Executive was invited to present at the Bangkok International Digital Content Festival on the Victorian creative industries with a focus on the games sector and the opportunities for collaboration between Victorian creatives and partners across Asia.
Expanded support for creative industries participation in the government's Victoria Invitation Program (VIP) and business engagement activities that promote Victoria as a key investment location to international visitors. This will build on the success of the design and fashion segments of the 2016 VIP inbound mission.
The Victorian Government's Victorian Invitation Program (VIP) brings potential investors and business partners to Victoria to network with Victorian counterparts and explore new business opportunities. Through this action, Creative Victoria has partnered with Trade Victoria to bring a number of creative industries delegations to the state. Creative Victoria has also worked with Trade Victoria to make arrangements for visiting delegations from other industry sectors to engage with Victoria's creative sector, or visit creative venues, during their time in the state.
Creative industries VIP visits to date have been arranged around the following events:
- Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival 2017: a 19 person delegation of fashion and design industry representatives from countries including China and Indonesia visited Melbourne to attend the festival and meet with local designers and industry organisations.
- Dance Massive 2017: A 20 person delegation of international bookers, venue managers, media and dance company representatives visited Melbourne to take part in Dance Massive and meet with local venues and dance companies.
- Asia TOPA 2017: Asia TOPA provided a backdrop for delegations from India (fashion and games industry representatives), China (urban design industry representatives) and Indonesia (representatives of government and cultural institutions), to travel to Melbourne and meet with key Victorian creative industries companies and individuals.
In August 2016, the Royal Thai Embassy sent a delegation of 19 creative industries representatives to Melbourne. In partnership with the embassy, Creative Victoria managed the delegation's itinerary which included visits to Kangan Institute's fashion department, Arts Centre Melbourne, RMIT and Asia TOPA events.
Creative Victoria has also partnered with Trade Victoria to ensure that creative and cultural activities were on the itinerary for the following events and VIP visits:
- The 45th Annual Australia Japan Joint Business Conference (October 2016). This conference brought Japanese business people and their families to Melbourne.
- Boao Forum for Asia Conference (December 2016) – this is an annual conference for leaders from government, business and academia across the Asia Pacific to meet and discuss the issues, challenges and opportunities facing Asia today. The conference brought 250 international representatives to Melbourne.
- Whole-of-government sister state visits: In March 2017 the Governor of Jiangsu (China) and Mayor of Busan Metropolitan City (South Korea) visited Melbourne with their advisers and officials.
- Walkley Foundation Visiting Journalists Program: The Walkley Foundation manages a journalist exchange program that sends Australian journalists to international locations, and international journalists to Australia. In 2016 five journalists from Korea visited Australia and met with representatives from several major Victorian cultural events and organisations.
- Commissioners for Victoria planning conference (April 2017): The Victorian Government has 19 international business offices across the globe. Each region is headed by a commissioner. These offices seek new international opportunities for Victorian businesses and explore international investment opportunities for Victoria. Creative Victoria maintains regular contact with staff in international offices to ensure they have the latest information about Victoria's creative industries. Each year the commissioners gather in Melbourne to plan the year ahead and in 2017, Creative Victoria used this opportunity to arrange for the commissioners to meet with Victorian creative organisations.
A new Music Passport program has been established (part of the Victorian Government's $22.2 million Music Works package) to increase international business links and export opportunities for the Victorian music industry. Inbound trade missions are a key component of this and will take place each November during Melbourne Music Week. In addition, Melbourne won a bid to host the international Music Cities Convention which will bring industry thought leaders from around the world to Melbourne in April 2018.
Creative Victoria has also supported creative organisations to add value to their international touring schedules by connecting them with Victorian Government Business Offices.
Showcasing the best Victorian creative talent, products and services internationally through touring opportunities, participation in key overseas events and festivals, and other market development opportunities.
This action has enabled Victorian creative practitioners to participate in key international events, and supported local and interstate events that promote Victorian talent across the nation, and the globe.
Activities undertaken to date include:
- Support for eight Victorian organisations to take up international opportunities arising out of the 2016 Australian Performing Arts Market.
- International collaborations and opportunities for local organisations including Polyglot Theatre (Indonesia), Flying Fruit Fly Circus (Vietnam and Cambodia), BalletLab (Brazil), Chamber Made Opera (China), Melbourne Symphony Orchestra (China) and ILBIJERRI (North America).
- Support for six Victorian creative practitioners to undertake Asialink Arts residencies throughout 2017.
- Support for Victorian artists and curators to participate in the Australia Council for the Arts' Professional Development Program at the 2017 Venice Biennale (May 2017).
- Support for ten Victorian independent publishers and agents to participate in the 2017 Sydney Writers Festival Visiting International Publishers program (May 2017).
Support has also been provided for:
- Representatives of ten small performing arts companies to attend the International Society of Performing Arts conference (May 2016), a gathering of international leaders in the performing arts.
- Dance Massive (March 2017), which presented over 40 curated dance shows and activities, and hosted an international delegation of over 20 international producers and venue managers.
The Music Works Grants program also provides significant international opportunities for Victoria's music industry. Almost $1 million (40% of the grants) was allocated to international activity in 206/17, including to showcase Victorian talent and labels at key international music industry events including SXSW and A2IM Indie Week in the US and The Great Escape in the UK.
In addition, Victoria's design talent and capability was showcased at the 2016 Hong Kong Business of Design Week with the BlackBOX exhibition, curated by Monash University's Ian Wong, highlighting 36 Victorian design innovations. This supported a Victorian design trade mission to this key global design industry event (see Actions 19 and 31). Expanded Victorian design showcases will be presented at the event in 2017 and, in particular, 2018 when Melbourne has been selected as the official city partner.
Support for ambitious platform events that will make new global connections for Victoria's creative industries such as:
Asia Pacific Triennial of Performing Arts (Asia TOPA, 2017)
Led by Arts Centre Melbourne, this unprecedented four-month program will present the best contemporary performing arts from across the region;
A joint initiative of the Sidney Myer Fund and Arts Centre Melbourne, with both state and federal government support, the inaugural Asia TOPA was held from Jan – April 2017.
A consortium of 40 creative industry partners presented over 60 events including performances, exhibitions, screenings, community events and gatherings.
Asia TOPA attracted 400 international artists, producers and creative teams to Melbourne. More than 25 new works were presented at the festival, including 15 that were specially commissioned or created, at 30 locations across central Melbourne and regional Victoria.
Following successful premieres at the festival, international presenters have confirmed or are in advanced conversations regarding tours of work to Singapore, The Netherlands, Japan, Canada, Germany and USA. Commissions and guest productions from Asia TOPA have already been performed in Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, with further national touring lining up for 2018 and beyond.
Asia TOPA also provided a new platform for government and the business community to strengthen trade and diplomatic ties in the region.
NGV Triennial of Art and Design
A large-scale celebration of the best of contemporary international art and design featuring major figures in contemporary art, architecture and design, film and performance.
The first NGV Triennial will run from 15 December 2017 to mid-April 2018.
Free to the public, this extensive and unprecedented global exhibition of art, design and architecture will occupy NGV International and various public spaces.
More than 60 artists and designers from 30 countries will be represented, addressing themes of Body, Change, Movement, Time and Virtual. Twenty major new works have been commissioned for the Triennial including a virtual reality art game project by Melbourne video game developer Tom Crago; a large-scale installation from Ron Mueck, and a new piece by PET Lamp (Spanish artists who work with plastic waste) produced in collaboration with Arnhem Land weavers Bula'bula.