DIY 6: 2009
DIY 6: 2009 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.
All projects will take place in August and September 2009.
Our Call for Participants is now closed.
Our Call for Proposals to lead a project has now closed.
Aimed at both emergent and experienced practitioners, the DIY 6 projects took many forms, including a 24-hour immersive experience, a 1000 mile bike ride, as well as a series of workshops, discussions, and encounters. Between them they covered diverse subjects of investigation including artistic research, political activism, public intervention, and parenthood. Details of the projects are included in the pdf version of the DIY 6 report (see link above).
For the third time, DIY took place across England with the support of a range of national partners. Nine projects were held during August and September 2009.
DIY 6 benefited the artistic and professional development of the participating artists and contributed to the skills and experiences of the artists who lead the projects.
Ninety artists took part in the 9 unique projects. The responses from the project leaders and the participants was that DIY 6'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 6 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 6 was therefore to facilitate and advise rather than to control or lead.
Each DIY 6 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 was intended to covered their fee and all direct project costs including venue hire, travel, materials and hospitality. Some artists also requested a small fee from participants, which further contributed to their project costs – however, the bulk of the DIY projects were free to participants.
The Live Art Development Agency and its partners financed and secured additional funding for the initiative, distributed a Call for Proposals via email/web listings, selected the lead artists through an open submission process, advised lead artists about the logistical and conceptual focus of their project, publicised the projects under the DIY 6 umbrella through a Call for Participants, organised a final networking event — the ‘DIY indoor picnic’ — for all participants, and collated a summary report.
Like previous DIY programmes, DIY 6 proved to be a very successful and cost effective initiative that demands to be continued. DIY 6 was the third 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 6 focused on professional development for artists within the Live Art sector. It is clear that the principles and form would successfully translate to other artform practices.
DIY 6 is a Live Art Development Agency initiative developed in collaboration with Artsadmin, New Work Network, The Basement, Colchester Arts Centre, Nuffield Theatre & LANWest, and PLATFORM.