Free to speak? Not if you work in the arts

A photo of statues of angels, one with a gag over its mouth
20 Feb 2020

As ArtsProfessional unveils the explosive findings from its recent Freedom of Expression survey, Liz Hill examines the soul of a sector that believes it is owed artistic freedom but doesn’t tolerate freedom of speech within its own ranks.

Head to head: can a toolkit solve the sector’s class problem?

14 Nov 2019

This year Jerwood Arts published a toolkit for cultural organisations, designed to encourage greater socio-economic diversity in the arts. Julie Lomax, Chief Executive of a-n The Artists Information Company, sees it as a starting point for helping solve the sector’s ‘class crisis’ – but arts consultant Chrissie Tiller isn’t so sure.

Life in the arts across Europe

Photo of woman standing by tree stump in snow
27 Mar 2018

Artists from across Europe describe what it’s like to work in their country of origin – from the almost desperate situation for some freelance artists in Spain to the generous support on offer in Arctic Norway.

Letter: Fund the ecosystem - not the select few

13 Jul 2020

If ACE only distributes the Government's support package to the organisations they have a current relationship with, then 80% of the sector will remain vulnerable and large scale venues as well as small will be at risk says Michael Ockwell.

ACE grants just one third of emergency funds, holds on to £56.9m

London Symphony Orchestra
09 Jul 2020

The funder says 95 National Portfolio Organisations that applied “were not able to demonstrate they needed urgent funding”.

Unprecedented £1.57 billion package to save the arts from the brink

Royal Opera House view of the stage from a balcony seat
07 Jul 2020

Sector leaders have responded with a mixture of relief and gratitude for a Government package that will secure the medium-term future of many organisations on the brink of permanent closure, but others believe the announcement leaves many questions unanswered.

Scottish Government makes first move to save the performing arts

06 Jul 2020

Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop has announced a Performing Arts Venues Relief Fund that will “meet the immediate needs” of organisations and freelance workers attempting to survive the ongoing impact of the pandemic.

Announcement of reopening brings little cheer to music and theatre

Belfast's Grand Opera House
24 Jun 2020

Although museums and galleries in England and Scotland can prepare to reopen, the  performing arts remain in lockdown and fears grow for the future of venue-based organisations.

£32m funding shortfall as demand for ACE funds outstrips supply

a word cloud image featuring phrases such as savings, emergency fund, 3 to 6 months, safety net and others
19 Jun 2020

Two-thirds of organisations and almost three quarters of individuals who applied to Arts Council England for emergency funds were successful, but 4,000 applicants were left disappointed.

Delay to planned Grantium upgrade

Photo shows a youngish man screaming into a telephone in apparent frustration
19 Jun 2020

Arts Council England is preparing to “make changes to Grantium where we can”, including an improved user interface, but the upgrade is currently on hold due to Coronavirus pressures.

Scottish Government announces financial life raft for Edinburgh Fringe

a group of costumed street performers at Edinburgh Fringe
16 Jun 2020

Scotland appears to be the first country in the UK to make a direct Government loan to ensure a cultural organisation can survive the current financial crisis.

Redundancy announcements gather pace

Theatre by the Lake
10 Jun 2020

Furloughed arts employees across the country are being warned of job losses as the next stage of the furlough scheme is deemed “not fit for purpose for the theatre industry”.

Arts Index sets out 10-year trends

National Lottery sticker possibly on a shop door
09 Jun 2020

The sources of money available to the cultural sector have changed significantly over the past decade but the overall picture suggests the sector coped with the changes until the Covid-19 crisis.

Bailout plans progress for sectors whose markets have collapsed

The Old Vic at nightime
07 Jun 2020

A Cultural Investment Participation Scheme offering repayable finance could kickstart the cultural sector’s economy under proposals being drawn up for Government to take a quasi-equity stake in theatres.

DCMS announces Working Groups to advise on reopening

an elephant in close-up
05 Jun 2020

The new forums will give more organisations a voice on the process for opening up venues, but the cash flow crisis facing the entire sector will remain the elephant in the room.

Time to choose

a baseball cap lodged in a life buoy on a boat. The caption on the hat is "harmonize humanity"
04 Jun 2020

Trusts and foundations are preparing to build stronger connections with a changed world and a changed public. Moira Sinclair reflects on this brief window of opportunity for a more equal future – and why the alternative is too grim.

Treating the rash or investing in a cure: the future of artists’ livelihoods

a painting of a ship in a stormy sea
03 Jun 2020

For artists and performers to be supported in the years ahead, de-institutionalisation and the decentralisation of arts funding is a priority. Universal basic income isn’t the whole answer, says Susan Jones.

Record Lottery ticket sales give a boost to the arts

lottery balls spinning
02 Jun 2020

The popularity of draw-based games improved returns to good causes last year, but heavy reliance on retail sales points to a “challenging” year ahead for National Lottery operator Camelot.

Lobbying for creative workers falls on deaf ears

Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer
01 Jun 2020

A tapering extension to pay protection for furloughed employees and Government refusal to acknowledge groups that have fallen through the gaps in its Covid-19 support schemes offer no comfort to the arts.

Sector fights for the survival of the self employed workforce

a man sitting behind a drum-kit in the foreground and a man standing in the background with a keyboard
28 May 2020

A chorus of dismay is growing in response to the deepening financial crisis facing many of the artistic and creative workers who form the largest part of the arts sector, and on whom the UK's arts infrastructure depends.


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