DIY 4: 2007
Professional Development BY Artists FOR Artists
DIY 4 was an opportunity for artists working in Live Art to conceive and run professional development projects for other artists. The fifteen DIY 4 projects took place between May and August 2007.
For the first time, DIY 4 took place across the UK and was supported by organisations in London, the South East, the North West, the West Midlands, Yorkshire, East England and the East Midlands.
Our Call for Participants is now closed.
Our Call for Proposals to lead a project has now closed.
DIY 4:2007 built on the success of previous DIY initiatives and offered artists from around England working in Live Art the chance to conceive and run professional development projects for other artists.
The DIY 4 projects took many forms from camping trips and walking tours, to workshops and group meetings. And between them covered areas of exploration from humour, through analysis of 'day jobs' to survival. Details of the projects are included in this report.
For the first time DIY 4 took place across the UK with the support of a range of national partners. Fifteen projects were held between May and August 2007.
DIY 4 benefited the artistic and professional development of the participating artists and contributed to the skills and experiences of the artists who lead the projects.
One hundred and four artists took part in the 15 unique projects. The responses from the project leaders and the participants was that DIY 4's emphasis on peer training:
- empowered artists by allowing them to manage their own professional development.
- enabled artists to develop creative approaches directly relevant to the needs of their practice.
- encouraged artists to perceive their artistic output and professional development as inter-related and mutually beneficial components of a 'complete' practice.
- facilitated networking between like minded artists.
- inspired artists to take risks and think differently.
DIY 4 again demonstrated that artists are extremely well equipped to conceive and manage complex and often demanding professional development initiatives. The role of the host organisations in DIY 4 was therefore to facilitate and advise rather than to control.
Each DIY 4 lead artist conceived their project, submitted an application detailing their idea, prepared publicity copy, managed recruitment of participants, handled all relevant participation fees, booked all necessary venues, facilitated their training day(s), and wrote an appraisal report.
Each lead artist received £1,000, which covered their fee and all direct project costs including venue hire, travel, materials and hospitality. Some artists chose to seek a small fee from participants which further contributed to their project costs.
The Live Art Development Agency and its partners financed and secured additional funding for the initiative, distributed a Call for Proposals via email, selected the lead artists through an open submission process, advised lead artists about the logistical and conceptual focus of their project, publicised the 15 projects under the DIY 4 umbrella through a Call for Participants, organised a final networking event — the ‘DIY picnic’ — for all participants, and collated this summary report.
Like previous DIY programmes, DIY 4 proved to be a very successful and cost effective initiative that almost demands to be continued. DIY 4 was the first time that projects had been offered nationally. Future development and refinement could include:
- Access to more tailored advice and guidance for the lead artists (if and when assistance is required).
- The inclusion of travel budgets to enable greater networking between project leaders and participating artists.
- A higher-profile evaluation of the projects, possibly through an event and/or publication that facilitates the sharing of outcomes and discussion of best practice.
- A more generous financial base that provides artists' fees commensurate with the amount of time required to initiate, manage and evaluate a project, and remuneration for the host organisations.
DIY 4 focused on the professional development within the Live Art sector. It is clear that the principles and form would successfully translate to other artform practices.
DIY 4: 2007 credits
DIY 4 was a collaboration between the Live Art Development Agency, Artsadmin, and New Work Network, and was developed with Nuffield Theatre/LANWest, New Work Yorkshire, Fierce Festival, Colchester Arts Centre, The Basement Arts Production South East, and Dance4. DIY 4 was part of Joining the Dots, a Live Art Development Agency initiative supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.
For more information about each organisation visit the websites:
DIY 4 is a collaboration between the Live Art Development Agency, Artsadmin, and New Work Network, and is being developed with Nuffield Theatre/LANWest (North West), New Work Yorkshire (Yorkshire), Fierce Festival (West Midlands), Colchester Arts Centre (East England), Brighton Fringe Arts Production (The Basement) (South East), and Dance4 (East Midlands).
DIY 4 is part of Joining the Dots, a Live Art Development Agency professional development initiative for artists across the UK. Joining the Dots is supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.