Skip to main content

From myths to motility: doing better by artists

This is a moment fraught with possi­bility.” Isabelle Tracy, Parallel State: State of the Nation podcast 27 March 2020

This fourth text in the Covid19 portfolio is on the future of artists’ liveli­hoods. It starts by evidencing the impact of external trends on visual artists’ liveli­hoods. It then identifies some of the policy misas­sump­tions and struc­tural barriers that limit artists’ livelihood prospects before demon­strating that visual artists as a special case’ within the arts workforce are deserving of individ­u­alised attention within arts policies. It concludes by outlining the core qualities for pursuit of liveli­hoods through art practices that enable many artists to contribute to society over a life-cycle as a point of reference for policy-making during the Covid19 emergency and into the uncertain decade ahead. 

Read “From myths to motility: doing better by artists” in full


The chance to dream: why fund individual artists?

Although not a major aspect of artists’ liveli­hoods, grants and awards to artists are a vital contributor to sustaining art practices over a life-cycle. This paper starts by outlining the benefits of direct funding to individual artists, describes differing arts policy perspec­tives on this in England over the last thirty years and provides a case study of Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts Scheme 2003 – 14 before making an argument for new, nuanced, localised approaches to nurturing and supporting the wider constituency of visual artists and diversity of art practices in future.

Read “The chance to dream: why fund individual artists?” in full