Michael Landy, Cor! What a Bargain! 1992

Cor! What a Bargain! Michael Landy, 1992

Liz Hill’s revelations about the National Funding Scheme in Arts Professional this week are undoubtedly shocking. How has the art world reacted to the exposé? Almost blanket silence. Any interest from the national press? Nope. Not yet. This silence typifies an arts establishment that happily trumpets any ‘positive’ news about the arts but increasingly closes ranks whenever there’s a whiff of failure or scandal.… READ MORE

I had a brilliant time as part of the panel at CREATEgloucestershire’s fourth birthday event on Monday 1st June 2015.  I presented a fifteen minute piece about dot to dot active arts and also about inequality in arts and culture today.  Here’s the presentation.  Remember to click the notes button at the bottom right of the online PowerPoint viewer app.… READ MORE

Cara Courage has asked socially engaged/ social practice artists a question: What do you do?

This is my reply I shared with Cara on her Facebook post…

SOCIAL PRACTICE

Little creative acts of not knowing.

Political, sometimes radically activist, acts.

Potential spaces. Safe places where dangerous new realities might grow. Grassroots.… READ MORE

A week after Participation on Trial at Union Chapel, I think it is worth reflecting a little upon the event as a format that could offer interesting potentialities in opening up arts and cultural debate.

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Participation in the arts faced a Dadaesque mock-trial in a Nonconformist chapel in London last Friday, 1st May, on International Workers’ Day.… READ MORE

This is my prosecution witness statement from today’s Participation on Trial event…  The (eventual) verdict was “GUILTY – BUT WHO CARES?”  Comments always welcome…

Arts and Society's photo

Everyone’s a ‘participant’ nowadays. Aren’t ‘they’? Or, following the Warwick Commission’s report on The Future of Cultural Value and its magic number – 8% – should I say ‘we’ – members of the cultural class?… READ MORE

NPG x184224; Aneurin Bevan; Jennie Lee

It’s been almost 50 years since Jennie Lee published her white paper A Policy for the Arts – The First Steps (1965). It was Britain’s first state arts policy. Some revere it. For others, the white paper ushered in a period of government instrumentalism in the arts, increasing the powerful influence of the Arts Council.… READ MORE

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Doctor Faustus in a magic circle, Woodcut, 1648

I have always been perplexed when people talk of “quality”.  It’s a strangely powerful word, given that it is essentially neutral.  Colloquially, people say things like, “He’s a quality player,” meaning that the person has an excellent footballing attribute (or attributes): goal scoring, tackling, whatever. … READ MORE

I was asked to present a brief précis of my current research at Northumbria University last week.  I thought it might be of interested to some people.  So here it is.  It’s an edited version of the presentation.  The images are a mix of my own, from my case studies and old film stills.READ MORE