New Ways of Working: VASW Regional Meeting

28 November 2013
Exeter Phoenix

Size Matters, Sarah Thelwall
Uncommon Ground, Jocelyn Cunningham
Meanwhile Leases

Our Regional Development Co-ordinator Grace Davies welcomed delegates from across the South West with a talk about the current drive to make the economic case for the visual arts and a desire to move arts from the margins to the centre of debate. ‘We need to develop a more sustainable arts sector’ she explained and the events speakers had been invited to elaborate on this subject.

VASW projects developed in 2013 included:

Our website: over 100 member groups and 140,000 unique visits

Quality of Experience: research commissioned into understanding this ACE measurement A full report will be available in February 2014.

Professional Development: 30 tailor made professional development bursaries offered to SW artists, curators and arts professionals.

Critical Writing for the Visual Arts, partnership with Arvon Foundation: offered 16 participants a place to develop their writing practice.

Regional Interference: a partnership with WORKS|PROJECTS offered 5 artists exhibition, professional development and representation opportunities.

International event research: feasibility study commissioned into a regional event of international significance, resulting in a decision to build upon already existing events.

Leadership Programme: 21 selected participants offered 5 workshops, 1-1 mentoring and action learning tasks on this leadership course.

New Expressions programme: commissions and international projects in museum and heritage settings. A new award will enable artists to develop projects with mentoring support.

Grace concluded her welcome stressing VASW’s commitment to promoting talent, connectivity, activation and advocacy of the visual arts in the South West.

Read about our other speakers Sarah Thelwall and Jocelyn Cunningham's talks here:
Jam Today or Jam Tomorrow? Sarah Thelwall

Knitting Together Arts & Social Change, Jocelyn Cunningham

After these talks, delegates could opt into 2 of 4 workshops, 2 led by the above speakers around their research and 2 additional sessions: New Approaches to Artist-Led Spaces led by SVA & Alias arts and Artists’ Groups and Peer-led Art Education led by Megan Wakefield and Pippa Koszerek.

The day finished with a knowledge sharing session which invited delegates to share their experiences of new ways of working to highlight best practice and methods best avoided and to unpick the problems we face as a sector. We heard from Phil Rushworth, Simon Bayliss and Naomi Frears who attended the Cornwall Workshop, Gail Sagman from The Jam Factory who spoke about developing international projects, Eva Martino from A-Peg who shared a successful crowd-funding campaign, Martha King from the Parlour Showrooms who elaborated on developing and working in partnerships, and Sam Aldridge from BRG collective and Nick Davies from Loophole Supplements who shared insights on collaborative working, self-initiated projects and publications. Finally, artist Kate Walters shared the highs and lows of taking a self-initiated group show she instigated to London.

What's On

Family Saturdays

Aspex Gallery, The Vulcan, PO1 3BF

Monday 01 October 2018 – Thursday 31 October 2019

Craft Workshops

Various Venues

Friday 08 February 2019 – Tuesday 31 December 2019

Jon England: Hour Hands

Market House Museum, 32 Swain St, Watchet TA23 0AD

Wednesday 27 March 2019 – Friday 08 November 2019

Visual Arts South West

Working towards a South West where talented artists thrive, and a resilient and connected visual arts ecology that inspires more engaged and diverse audiences to value and advocate for its work.

Part of the Contemporary Visual Arts Network

Supported by: