Understanding Museum Services

KwaZulu-Natal Museum Service is responsible for promotion and preservation of South Africa’s rich and varied cultural heritage by assisting in the development of local Museums in KwaZulu-Natal.

The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Arts and Culture has 40 Museums affiliated to it, all of which are open to the public and receive financial assistance from Provincial Government.

Through Museum Service the Department also provides Museums with professional and technical assistance in terms of Research, Arts Studio, Conservation, Research, Collections Management and Events, Marketing & Outreach projects.


The conservation unit is responsible for understanding the material aspects of objects of historic and artistic importance in order to prevent their deterioration, to improve our comprehension of these objects and to preserve and conserve our cultural heritage for future generations.

Support and Training is also offered to all affiliated Museums pertaining to the conservation of heritage objects within the Province.

Affiliated Museums

1860 Heritage CentreMission House Museum
Baynesfield Estate MuseumMpophomeni Eco-Museum
Bergtheil MuseumOld Court House Museum
Carnegie Art GalleryOld Parsonage
Comrades House MuseumOld Prison Museum
DCO Matiwane MuseumPinetown Museum
Durban Art GalleryPhansi Museum
Durban Natural Science
Port Natal Museum
East Griqualand Museum
Port Shepstone Maritime
Empangeni Arts & Cultural
Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi
Museum and Documentation
Fort Amiel MuseumQhudeni Museum
Fort DurnfordRichmond Byrne Museum
Gerard Bhengu MuseumRohde House Museum
Greytown MuseumSiege Museum
Himeville MuseumTalana Museum
Howick MuseumTatham Art Gallery
KwaDukuza MuseumVukani Museum
KwaMuhle MuseumWeenen Museum
Lucas Meijer MuseumWinterton Museum
Margate Art GalleryZululand Historical Museum
Mazisi Kunene Museum

Collections Management

The collections management unit is involved in the development, storage and preservation of collections & cultural  heritage for future generations. It ensures the maintenance, effective documentation, and preservation of artefacts whilst creating access to them in Museums.

Museum Service houses the Provincial heritage and non-heritage asset collection consisting of different craft-works namely; the bead collection, clay collection, wood and metal collection, basket collection and ethnographic collection. It also comprises of the Parliament Collection and an Art collection which represents a number of different Kwa-Zulu Natal artists.

The collection has replicas or examples of authentic original traditional craft. These artifacts are not just stored but are used to provide opportunities for study, education and enjoyment to the public in the form of collections acquired, exhibitions and
research material.


The Research unit provides a research function for and on behalf of affiliated Museums.
They are responsible for:

  • The investigation of topics identified for exhibitions in affiliated and Provincial Museums,
  • The compilation of text documents
  • The identification of visual source material
  • The identification, research towards, and compilation of any suitable range of publications and manuscripts on topics relating to relevant KwaZulu-Natal and South African issues. These would include books, journal articles, and contributions to print media;
  • The participation in conferences, either of a Museum or history professional inclination, and presentation of papers at such events