Independents Meeting

150 artists attended the meeting at Unity Theatre yesterday to hear details of the Arts Council NW’s plans to appoint a ‘Creative Facilitator’ and Board to support the Liverpool Biennial Independents Programme (LBIP).
There have been various meetings and discussions leading up to this and we were presented with the Job Description, Constitution, Guidelines and Nomination Forms.
Naturally, there was a lot of discussion, misunderstandings and clarifications.

In a nutshell…
A Creative Facilitator will be appointed as soon as possible (the post is yet to be advertised).
The role will focus on:
• Advising individual artists wishing to exhibit during the LBIP
• Research & deployment of available space for exhibition use during the LBIP
• Producing publicity, interpretation and marketing materials for the organisation’s activities
• Organising opening times of spaces & recruitment of volunteer invigilators
• Building a high quality experience for the Independent’s audience

A Board of no more than 8 members will be set up with the aims & Objectives…

a)
To support and advocate opportunities for artist-centred activity around the Liverpool Independents strand of the Liverpool Biennial.

b)
To appoint and support the Creative Facilitator in order that they can carry out the tasks outlined in their job description.

c)
Through the work of the Creative Facilitator and the Board:
• To evaluate the work and impact of the organisation with the aim of developing appropriate board structure models for the Liverpool Independent and to help determine the direction of the organisation in the run up to Capital of Culture 2008
• To develop an artists’ selection mechanism for the branded Independents
• To provide information on the branded Independents
• To provide prospective Independents artists with curatorial advice, generic exhibiting guidance, and a sign-posting service towards appropriate grants bodies, exhibition spaces and related partners.
• To coordinate the Independents show, including the central management of information, press and publicity
• To liaise with key partners (including the Biennial, Arts Council England, afoundation, Capital of Culture, Liverpool City Council etc) over planning and decision-making pertinent to the Independents
• To develop funding applications on behalf of the Independents to cover operating costs (including publicity, marketing, interpretation, personnel etc)
• To liaise regularly with the artistic community of Liverpool through meetings and electronic communication .

The word INDEPENDENT is very important in all this. The independents strand is artist-led, it is not run, curated or controlled by either the Biennial or the Arts Council but they and this new facilitator can help and selected independent shows can be included in the Biennial catalog, marketing etc. (the new board/ facilitator will have to set up a transparent selection process for this).
It is up to individual artists or groups of artists to apply for funding (if required) and find venues etc. as before.

Some useful dates:
Applications for grants from the Arts Council:
If less than £5000 allow 6 weeks so final date for submission is August 4th
If more than £5000 allow 12 weeks so final date is June 23rd

There are two workshop days at Blackburne house to assist people who are new to the process of applying for grants.
These are on April 21st and May 19th.

Further details on grants, workshops etc. from Mike Noon at the Arts Council NW. email mike.noon@artscouncil.org.uk

And forms etc. are on the website www.artscouncil.org.uk

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