ARTS LEGEND: Peter Rorvik (left) with popular Canadian animal rights and environmental activist, Paul Watson, at the 32nd Durban International Film Festival at the Musgrave Cinema.

THE departure of Peter Rorvik (pictured) from the University of KZN’s Centre for Creative Arts (CCA) concludes an exciting growth period for arts and culture in Durban, represented by the four annual CCA festivals – Time of the Writer, Poetry Africa, Jomba! the Contemporary Dance Experience, and the Durban International Film Festival.

All of these landmarks in Durban’s event calendar have contributed significantly to the cultural life of this city, delivering cutting-edge writers, poets, dancers, musicians and film-makers to our arts-hungry communities.

Rorvik has headed the CCA since 1999 and has been instru- mental in sustaining and growing the respective festivals and related industry programmes into locally and internationally acclaimed events.

Speaking of his experiences, he said: “It has been an enormous privilege working with amazing cultural practitioners from numerous artistic disciplines, and creating public platforms for their work. Culture feeds the soul of society and should not be taken for granted. Art touches us in the head and heart. I trust that the work we have built up over the years will continue to flourish, in particular the annual CCA festivals.”

Rorvik’s organisational expertise and experience in the cultural sector will be channelled to good effect in his new position as secretary-general of Arterial Network. With chapters in 40 countries, Arterial Network plays a critical role in supporting arts advocacy and development in the creative sector in Africa.

Rorvik noted: “For many years the CCA has worked to establish synergies with artists and arts organisations in Africa, creating exchange opportunities, and introducing to local audiences and to other artists a fantastic array of leading poets, writers, dancers, choreographers, musicians, films and film-makers.

“It is a natural extension of these interests to work with the Arterial Network in facilitating structural growth and development for the arts across the continent. Many challenges exist, but the richness of arts and culture in Africa and the well-being of artists is something worth striving for,” he said.

Dr Yolisa Nompula, from UKZN’s Faculty of Education, will oversee the CCA activities until the new director is appointed in the new year.