This is a short article that aims to explain my arguments about artwashing.  It focuses on art’s long-standing relationship to property, power and publicity.

Mephistopheles Flying, from Faust, lithograph,  Eugène Delacroix , 1828 Mephistopheles Flying, from Faust, lithograph,  Eugène Delacroix , 1828

Mephistopheles Flying, from Faust, lithograph, Eugène Delacroix, 1828

A brief art history of art, property and artwashing

Art has always been a form of property.  During the Renaissance, art was the property of Royalty, the nobility and the church. … READ MORE

This is the second of two blog posts examining recently published reports.  The first post focused on the civic role of arts organisations.  This post is a response to Towards cultural democracy: Promoting cultural capabilities for everyone and some of the other discussions that developed from its publication.

(Like last time, the blog title is inspired by a song. … READ MORE

I did a talk at Diffusion ‘Revolution’ Festival Symposium at Cardiff University today.  I’ve uploaded my presentation with notes here.  Click the link below to read it and remember to turn notes on in bottom right hand corner of presentation when it loads…  The talk is called Artwashing: From Mining Capital to Harvesting Social Capital.… READ MORE

I recently wrote a blog post about Artwashing London.  It looked at V22 and its connections to corporate interests and offshore company headquarters.  I will write another shortly and more about different cases I think could be classed as artwashing after that.

It is important that I explain my rationale. … READ MORE


Heartland, The The, 1986

Beneath the old iron bridges, across the Victorian parks,
& all the frightened people running home before dark,
Past the Saturday morning cinema–
that lies crumbling to the ground,
& the piss stinking shopping centre in the new side of town.
I’ve come to smell the seasons change, & watch the city,
as the sun goes down again.… READ MORE

I recently walked around Robin Hood Gardens in the company of Rab Harling and Adam Greenfield as part of my ongoing research into gentrification and acts of resistance.  These are my reflections…

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Entrance to first block at Robin Hood Gardens. Entrance to first block at Robin Hood Gardens.

Entrance to first block at Robin Hood Gardens.

Robin Hood Gardens social housing at once derelict yet also very much alive. … READ MORE

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Hipster Police Hipster Police

Hipster Police

This is my first article for The Guardian Comment is Free section.  I’ve added my own pic here…

It’s a response to Matt Hancock’s recent maiden speech about UK arts and culture in which he said, “The hipster is a capitalist.”

I’d love your feedback…


#FolkestoneGold.  Popular and extremely newsworthy.  People digging for little chunks of gold on the beach in Folkestone is certainly an arts marketing dream; a boon for this year’s Folkestone Triennial.  Folkestone Digs was commissioned by new Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation Situations and produced by Berlin-based artist Michael Sailstorfer. … READ MORE

Other disciplines that might further develop socially engaged art practice

This section considers other disciplines that are relevant to my research question (Can participatory art support sustainable social change?) and are interesting, perhaps, inspiring alternative perspectives that may help provide new ways of investigating and developing concepts surround socially engaged practice, social change and sustainability.READ MORE