Ever since the early days of New Labour in 1997, it’s been government and arts policy to integrate and progress development of the visual arts through the creative industry umbrella and to embrace its economic imperatives. As this situation is likely to continue for the foreseeable future, through my new research I’m addressing some key questions. Do these industries provide a conducive environment in which visual artists can make a living and develop their careers? Are the conditions and employment practices more favourable to ways of working by some artists while others lose out? Updated 16/01/17.
The terms of reference for today’s artists’ residencies are wide and various. Examples of the polarities artists are now presented with range from a considered opportunity over several months for artists to take stock and reflect with little or no expectation of ‘public’ output, to those residencies in which artists are expected find a solution to a community, education or arts ‘problem’ in a short time, often for a very small fee.
Introduction to fees to artists for exhibiting in public with examples indicating that sustaining such schemes is dependent on widespread and continued acceptance of the principle and rigorous self-regulation within the sector, and on gaining suitable levels of public subsidy to the visual arts. Three financing options are considered in support of equanimity. An afterword considers whether in a political climate of reduced subsidy to the public sector, some new strategies are needed to finance the arts and artists’ contributions. Updated 16/08/16
Think about it: living creatively, for life, was a conference held in Gateshead, 28 June 2016 comprising inspiring presentations and a practical workshop. It was aimed specifically at interested people from the arts, health and wellbeing and housing to explore and debate the issues and strategies and to inform a chain of actions which will lead to development and realisation of the concept of Independent Creative Living as an innovative housing and arts development initiative in North East England. A compilation of some of the resources that those organising this event and furthering the initiative have found informative or inspirational is published here for wider information. Updates added 09/08/2016