1 Comment

Within the case studies, similar aspirations are attached to the work of artist-led organisations. These are said to “create ambitious projects which involve a wide range of audiences”, “make an excellent contribution to delivering arts provision in the community”, “play an active role in stimulating and contributing to debates… on visual arts practice and intervening in the wider architectural fabric of the environment…”, “[help] people develop confidence, new skills and abilities they didn’t know they had… opening up new opportunities for individuals and groups” and “providing important resources for artists, schools and others in the community”. On this front alone, artist-led organisations would appear to have the ability to offer significant contributions to future visual arts provision, and thus be eligible for A4E funds.

Artist-led organisations, however, can claim to be playing an important role within the arts environment as a whole. The case studies demonstrate that these groups are concerned with developing new ways of producing and presenting the visual arts and to do this, are committed to building and sustaining relationships with communities of people and other interest groups. It can be argued that a greater investment in such work by the arts funding system is justified because it not only contributes to the overall vitality of the arts but supports the generation of ‘cultural capital’, the product which arises when a strong sense of artistic vision, ambitious approaches to the creation and presentation of work and the willingness to be experimental are combined with a passion for self-development and creative success.