Adaptation strategies of artist-led spaces

Past Project 2019

A panel discussion, hosted by new nomadic artist-led space Shipment on sustainable business models for artist-led spaces



Date: Thursday 11th April at Shipment

Artist-led spaces provide vital access to London’s art world, both for the artists who run them and those they exhibit, who go on to acclaim in larger institutions. Regular funding is scarce, however, with many more spaces set up than traditional arts funding could possibly support, the competition is great: stability for artist-led spaces today demands inventive approaches to bringing in money from new sources.

This panel discussion, chaired by Artquest, brought together new and established artist-led spaces to consider the financial pressures of this precarious way of working, asking whether the changing economic context of London brings new ethical opportunities to sustainability. How can money be brought in from outside of the usual arts funding streams, and what strings are attached? The panel consisted of Daniel Kelley of DKUK, Jennifer Lewandowski of French Riviera, Roland Fischer of SET 

Realised by artist/hairdresser Daniel Kelly, DKUK provides a platform for engaging diverse audiences with contemporary art in the welcoming environment of a hairdressing salon. Kelly has exhibited at the Saatchi Gallery, Whitechapel Gallery, Somerset House, Ancient and Modern, French Rivera, Outpost, Norwich and Matt’s Gallery. He has work in the Saatchi collection and is was an associate of Open School East.

Artists Samuel Levack and Jennifer Lewandowski opened French Riviera, in Bethnal Green as an extension of their long-standing collaboration in 2011. The gallery is an exhibition platform for emerging and established international artists. Since 2010 Levack and Lewandowski have made music and performed with their band Das Hund, and their work has been shown in the UK, Europe, and the USA.

SET  was founded in 2016 by Roland Fischer, Joshua Field and Ollie Tobin and is a multifaceted arts and community initiative based in numerous centres across London. SET curates an experimental arts programme alongside affordable artist workspace. Projects include performances, live music, exhibitions, talks, workshops and screenings, which seeks to provide a platform for new and collaborative projects.

Shipment (established 2019) is a moving, artist-led gallery that occupies a trail of liminal locations to present site-specific, creative projects. Shipment produces contemporary art, performance, writing, design and technology projects and is directed by artist and producer Oliver Durcan, who graduated from Chisenhale Arts Place’s ‘Into The Wild’ Artist Development programme in 2017.

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