Creative State 2025 implementation update
The Victorian Government’s four-year creative industries strategy, Creative State 2025, sets out a path for the recovery, reactivation and growth of the state’s creative industries in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The strategy includes 25 actions, across five objectives, and is underpinned by a set of principles to guide program design, investment and decision-making.
Some of the actions in Creative State 2025 can be implemented quickly, while others require longer-term planning and execution. Some actions involve the development of major infrastructure projects, some comprise multiple elements, and others deliver funding programs or one-off events and initiatives. In many cases, actions rely on partnerships with industry, community, the private sector or other portfolios and tiers of government.
Since the strategy’s launch in July 2021, Creative Victoria has commenced implementation of all 25 Creative State 2025 actions.
As Victoria’s creative industries continue to recover from the deep impacts of the pandemic, these actions are helping to stabilise the sector, create opportunity and stimulate growth for Victoria’s creative workers, businesses and industries.
Project highlights since the strategy’s launch in July 2021
Among the projects underway are a range of programs, activities and investments that are delivering considerable sector and community impact, while raising the profile of Victoria’s creative industries and creative practitioners.
Project highlights include:
- The appointment of 5 new First Peoples Direction Circle members, who will play a key role in the co-design and implementation of Creative State 2025 actions.
- New members: Glennys Briggs, Ngarra Murray, Sonja Hodge, Tony Briggs, Kutcha Edwards
- Continuing members: Vicki Couzens (Chair), Treahna Hamm, Kim Kruger, Neil Morris, Gail Harradine, Ngioka Bunda-Heath
- The delivery of First Peoples Creative Industries Satellite Forums: events throughout 2023 designed to celebrate and grow Victoria’s First Peoples creative industries sector (Action 1.1).
- The delivery of the Yalingwa visual arts initiative at ACCA including the appointment of First Peoples curator Jessica Clarke (a proud Tasmanian Aboriginal woman), the awarding of the Yalingwa Artist Fellowship to Mutti Mutti, Wamba Wamba, Yorta Yorta and Boonwurrung woman Maree Clarke and the staging of the 2023 Yalingwa exhibition, Between Waves. Yalingwa is a visual arts program strengthening the development of outstanding contemporary First Peoples art and curatorial practice in Victoria (Action 1.3).
- The presentation by the Koorie Heritage Trust of their 10th annual Koorie Art Show, in December 2022 (Action 1.4).
- Partnering with The Observership program to develop the leadership capabilities of young people from diverse backgrounds. In 2023, 29 creative industries organisations are taking part and 26 of the 32 Observer participants paired with these boards identify as First Peoples and/or being from diverse backgrounds (including Deaf/Disability, culturally and linguistically diverse, Regional/Rural and LGBTQI+) (Action 2).
- Launching an expressions of interest process seeking Victorian community members with relevant skills and interest in being appointed to a creative industries agency board. The EOI is open to all Victorians with young people and people from diverse backgrounds encouraged to apply (Action 2).
- Improving access to employment opportunities for Deaf and Disabled creatives by providing: 22 grants, in partnership with Arts Access Victoria; 72 grants in partnership with Regional Arts Victoria, through the Sustaining Creative Workers initiative; and 22 grants through the dedicated Deaf and Disabled funding streams of Creative Victoria’s Creators Fund Creative Ventures Program (Action 3).
- Awarding 95 grants totalling $3,669,765 through the Creators Fund to provide the time for creatives from all disciplines to undertake intensive research and experimentation of new ideas and concepts (Action 8).
- Positioning Victoria as a design leader and promoting the use of design (Action 9) through the:
- Success and growing profile of the Victorian Premier’s Design Awards and Melbourne Design Week 2022 and 2023
- MPavilion 2022 public program
- Annual Living Cities Forum
- Melbourne MedTech Design Showcase at the AusMedTech 2022 Conference
- BioMelbourne Victorian MedTech Design Pavilion, Hong Kong
- Circular Design Masterclass (pilot) program, in partnership with Sustainability Victoria and the Circular Economy Business Innovation Centre.
- Providing $85 million in funding to 113 Victorian creative entities through the new Creative Enterprises and Creative Ventures programs (Actions 10 and 11.1) with the 2024 round opening for applications in June 2023.
- Positioning Victoria as a global powerhouse for screen (Action 12) by:
- Contributing $12.5 million to support the construction of cutting-edge virtual production facilities at Docklands Studio Melbourne – including the world’s largest LED volume screen – managed by NantStudios
- Funding original, early-stage digital games development by Victorian practitioners through a new $750,000 Originate Games VicScreen funding program
- Supporting Originate Features, a hot house program for feature films by writers and directors from backgrounds that are traditionally underrepresented in the screen industry. The 2022 program resulted in 4 feature films being greenlit for production. These projects will create 300 jobs for local screen workers.
- Securing major international productions including Betterman, one of the largest movies to be filmed in the state. The production injected feature film record $107 million into the Victorian economy, created around 2,200 local jobs in addition to more than 2,700 extras and casuals and engaged with an estimated 300 local businesses and service providers.
- Launching a $15 million rebate designed to attract new international game, animation, post-production and visual effects projects to Victoria to employ Victorian workers, and to support local companies to think even bigger.
- Providing 24 one-off grants totalling more than $2.5 million for infrastructure and equipment upgrades that support secure and accessible workspaces for creative use, through the new Creative Neighbourhood Infrastructure Support Program (Action 13).
- Investing in the recovery and growth of Victoria’s contemporary music sector (Action 14) by:
- Investing $5.45 million through Music Works, with $3.1 million through the Music Works Major Grant program to fund 139 Victorian independent artists and music businesses; and $2.35 million directed to organisations to deliver strategic partnership programs
- Delivering $20 million to venues and event organisers via the Live Music Restart Package
- Delivering live music events in flood-impacted Victorian communities through Music Victoria, from a $1 million package announced in January 2023.
- Providing $1.6 million in funding across 2021 and 2022 to 16 arts and cultural organisations, performers and creatives to help them take professional productions, performances, exhibitions and programs to regional and outer-metropolitan Victoria (Action 16).
- Securing a four-year funding partnership with the Department of Education and Training to provide students and teachers with a range of opportunities through the Creative Learning Partnerships program, including $630,000 in funding to support projects in 38 schools across 2022 and 2023 (Action 17).
- The opening in late 2021 of the new Shepparton Art Museum, and the final stages of the transformation of Geelong Arts Centre into Australia’s biggest regional performing arts centre, set to open in August 2023, further enhancing regional Victoria’s creative infrastructure and reputation (Action 18).
- Providing major new exhibitions at Melbourne Museum (Action 19), including:The opening in March 2022 of the Triceratops: Fate of the Dinosaurs exhibit featuring the world’s most complete Triceratops fossils at Melbourne Museum (the exhibition contributed to the museum’s busiest year on record in 2022)
- The opening in March 2023 of the Gandel Gondwana Garden exhibit, an expansive outdoor gallery featuring ecosystems of the past.
- The release of the design for NGV Contemporary, Australia’s biggest contemporary art and design gallery, as part of the Melbourne Arts Precinct Transformation (Action 20.2).
- Assisting creatives to build demand, audiences and markets (Action 22) by:
- Working with the 7 projects supported through Creative Victoria’s Building Audiences Fund 2022-23 to help independent creatives and small organisations build, expand or re-establish audiences and grow their revenue streams
- Undertaking research into the sector’s marketing and audience development needs.
- Promoting investment and trade through virtual and in-person missions to and from events in 9 different countries, linking over 150 Victorian delegates and over 70 international delegates to business opportunities that benefit Victoria (Action 23).
- Increasing access to international markets by delivering platform trade and showcase events to a record number of online and in-person participants (Action 24), including:
- Local events such as Australian Performing Arts Market’s Gathering events, Melbourne Art Fair, Melbourne Design Fair, Melbourne and Geelong Design Weeks, Melbourne International Games Week, AsiaTOPA, and Melbourne Fashion and Film Festivals
- International business showcases such as Gamescom (Germany), Game Developers Conference (US), London Tech Week, South by Southwest (USA) and G Star (Korea).
- Promoting increased levels of recognition and activity across each of Victoria’s four UNESCO Creative Cities – Ballarat, Geelong, Bendigo and Melbourne – including network summits for UNESCO Cities of Design and Literature (Action 25).
Collectively, these achievements – and the continuing efforts to realise the vision and deliver the actions of Creative State 2025 – are positioning Victoria’s creative industries as a key component of the state’s future economic prosperity and social wellbeing.
As the work continues, Creative Victoria will publish twice-yearly Creative State 2025 updates in each remaining year of the strategy.
Creative State 2025 project highlights to August 2022
Project highlights include:
- Delivered the inaugural annual First Peoples Creative Industries Forum, celebrating and growing Victoria’s First Peoples’ creative industries sector (Action 1.1).
- Appointed a new First Peoples Curator at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art to oversee the Yalingwa visual arts initiative that strengthens the development of outstanding contemporary First Peoples art and curatorial practice (Action 1.3).
- Improved access to employment opportunities for Deaf and Disabled creatives by providing: 22 grants in partnership with Arts Access Victoria; 72 grants in partnership with Regional Arts Victoria, through the Sustaining Creative Workers initiative; and 18 grants through Creative Victoria’s dedicated Deaf and Disabled funding streams (Action 3).
- The Creators Fund awarded 70 grants totalling $2,678,442 to provide the time for creatives from all disciplines to undertake intensive research and experimentation of new ideas and concepts (Action 8).
- Positioned Victoria as a design leader and promoted design through the success and growing profile of the Victorian Premier’s Design Awards and Melbourne Design Week 2022 (Action 9.1).
- Provided $85 million in funding to 113 Victorian creative entities through the new Creative Enterprises and Creative Ventures programs (Actions 10.1 and 11.1).
- Secured Victoria’s largest screen production, the eight-part Metropolis TV series, expected to generate 4,000 local jobs — first production in a pipeline of projects in partnership with NBCUniversal, set to inject $416 million into the Victorian economy (Action 12.2).
- The Creative Neighbourhood Infrastructure Support Program provided one-off grants for infrastructure upgrades that support secure and accessible workspaces for creative use (Action 13.1).
- Invested $1.7 million in Music Works grants, supporting 70+ artists to get back to work and front live audiences across Melbourne and regional Victoria. An additional $20 million Live Music Restart Package is helping re-establish Victoria’s position as a world-leading destination for contemporary music post COVID-19 pandemic restrictions (Action 14.1).
- Provided $765,000 in funding to eight arts and cultural organisations, performers and creatives to help them take professional productions, performances, exhibitions and programs to regional and outer-metropolitan Victoria (Action 16.1).
- Secured a four-year Department of Education and Training funding partnership to provide students and teachers with opportunities through the Creative Learning Partnerships program, including $315,000 in funding for 19 partnerships in 2022 (Action 17).
- Opened the new Shepparton Art Museum, further enhancing regional Victoria’s creative infrastructure and reputation (Action 18.1).
- The new Triceratops: Fate of the Dinosaurs exhibit opened at Melbourne Museum featuring the world’s most complete Triceratops fossils. The exhibition contributed to the Museum’s busiest April on record in 2022 (Action 19.1).
- Released the design for The Fox: NGV Contemporary, Australia’s biggest contemporary art and design gallery, as part of the Melbourne Arts Precinct Transformation (Action 20.1).
- Creative Victoria’s Building Audiences Fund provided $100,000+ to seven projects to help independent creatives and small organisations build, expand or re-establish audiences and grow their revenue streams (Action 22).
- Promoted investment and trade through virtual missions to 10 different events in eight countries and assisted 80 Victorian creative companies to present their products to 25,000+ consumers across global platforms (Action 23).
- Increased access to international markets by delivering platform trade and showcase events to a record number of online and in-person participants. This included Melbourne Design Week, Melbourne International Games Week, Melbourne Fashion Festival, Melbourne Film Festival, plus virtual missions to 10 different marketplace events in eight countries (Action 24).
- Promoted increased levels of recognition and activity across each of Victoria’s four UNESCO Creative Cities: Ballarat, Geelong, Bendigo and Melbourne — including UNESCO Cities of Design global summits, Summit of Australian Gastronomy and a new Australian Centre for Rare Arts (Action 25).