Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy was established in February 1974 by the National Parliament vide Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy Act 1974 (Act no 31 of 1974). Later on, in 1989, the 1974 Act was replaced by this new Parliamentary Act. Since then the Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy is managed by Act of 1989.

The main purposes of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy are: Promotion and development of national culture, Research on culture, art, and heritage, helping the destitute and gifted artists, making grants to various non-governmental cultural organizations, Highlighting national culture in home and abroad and preservation of folk cultural heritage are some of the main responsibilities of the Academy, Arranging cultural and film shows, drama, music, and dance, discussion meetings, seminar, symposium, sending cultural troops to overseas countries, publication of books on performing arts, music, dance, and film, arranging trainings, participation in national and international book festivals and arranging sells of its publications are also important tasks of the Academy.

The council of the Academy is constituted by 27 members from various public and private representatives having the Minister for Cultural Affairs as Chairperson, and the Secretary of the same Ministry as the Vise Chairperson, with three honorable members of the National parliament. The Director General of the Academy is the member Secretary of the Council.

There are 6 Departments in the Academy are – Fine arts, Drama and film, Music and dance, Research and publications, Training, Production