Lois Keidan is leaving the Live Art Development Agency – which has an exclusively white workforce – to help address “critical issues of representation”.
The Director of LADA, the Live Art Development Agency, is stepping down in response to the urgent need for structural change in the cultural sector to address its lack of diversity.
Lois Keidan was Co-Founder of the organisation, which had its 20th anniversary last year. But LADA has an exclusively white workforce and she acknowledges that “this perpetuates inequalities and underrepresentation of Black, Indigenous and People of Colour in Live Art.”
In a statement, the organisation says: “We are acutely aware of our failures to recruit a more diverse and inclusive team, and we sincerely apologise. We recognise that this runs counter to the work we do, to our values, and to those of the artists and partners we collaborate with.”
Since a 20th anniversary review of the organisation in 2019, Keidan has been working with staff and Board on “plans to reimagine the future of our organisation”, including “critical issues of representation, and the need to explore radical new ways of working – and new models of leadership – that respond to the most challenging and innovative ideas and practices”. These plans are now being accelerated.
The organisation said: “Looking at our own failures, we understand that structural change in the cultural sector, and especially a commitment to Black, Indigenous and People of Colour, must come from the top – from organisational leadership and governance. It is for this reason that Lois intends to step aside, and to support LADA through a process of organisational transition in close dialogue with a diverse range of artists, activists, academics, arts workers and others.”