Arts, culture and heritage
Arts, culture and heritage

​​​​Arts, culture and heritage services directorate


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15 April 2009

Johannesburg has many superb museums both to educate and entertain. For those who want to learn about South African history and culture, there are museums devoted to apartheid, to the discovery of gold, on military and Boer history, on transport, money, zoology, culture, medicine, anthropology, beer and other subjects diverse enough to capture the imagination of every visitor.

Find out more on the city's cultural and history museums, specialist museums and science museums.

Cultural calendar
Check out the list of special days and events, as well as the holidays of neighbouring countries, and plan some fun downtime.

FROM downtown Newtown to the sprawling township of Soweto, from the leafy north to the western outskirts of Roodepoort, Joburg is the province's cultural hub, with a host of galleries, theatres and museums.

And it is the City's directorate of arts, culture and heritage that ensures that all the communities of Joburg are provided with creative and cultural outlets.

The City boasts:

In addition, Joburg's diverse heritage is celebrated through programmes such as the annual City-sponsored Arts Alive festival and Johannesburg Carnival.

Arts Alive sees a host of events ranging from music performances to theatre productions, from poetry and photographic workshops to dance classes. It is a celebration of all that the city has to offer culturally. It is about expanding horizons and improving the quality of life for the residents of Johannesburg.

The annual end of year Joburg Carnival heralds in the New Year with a street parade through the inner city, with community groups building floats and designing and creating costumes. Besides being a way for Joburg residents to celebrate their city and to take ownership of the streets, the carnival also provides training opportunities for related industries in the performance art sector.

Township arts ce​ntres

The City is currently upgrading the Uncle Tom's Community Centre in Orlando, Soweto. A new dance studio has been established and a studio for artists will be provided. The entire building is being refurbished at a cost of R3-million from a grant received from Gauteng.

The facilities at Oppenheimer Park have also been upgraded and the Credo Mutwa site is being restored.

The Mofolo Art Centre and Bapedi Hall are available for arts groups. The Mofolo Art Centre includes a working space for ceramic artists.

A small theatre in Alexandra is currently being upgraded by the Alexandra Renewal Project, and a number of new dance spaces in future community centre developments are also being planned.

The majority of halls and community centres across Johannesburg are managed by the City's sports and recreation directorate. This directorate, as well as the directorate of arts, culture and heritage, falls under the Department of Community Development.