Ideas captured from the Language and Craft Seminar July 2010 -- Breakout Session 2

Forming Ideas: Conference on Craft & Language
Birmingham July 13, 2010
Discussion notes Breakout Session 2

How could the arts sector communicate what it is to the audiences in order to increase its value?

  • Don’t need to know the ‘rules’ to engage with the arts
  • Multiple voices really important- word of mouth
  • Public support critical to support freedom of expression

    If you want visual democracy you need to support the sector

    Take the democracy route/ integrity/ value
    Eg. 10 directors resigning collectively to reinforce the importance of the message
  • Analogy of Cooking- broad church
  • Journalism about conflict, not investigation
  • We all operate in very small units - disadvantages the sector as a whole
  • Respect difference - one institution can’t be all things to all men
  • Communication within the sector needs to be improved
  • Onus is on us to be more open
  • Value? Monetary? Engagement? Impact - Transformative
  • Value has been demonstrated by breadth and depth of engagement - but is this lasting value?
  • How to frame the offer to get support?
  • Unhelpful to encourage silo thinking - recognise the broad landscape of practice
  • Who is the audience? - Who needs to know?
  • 		Prejudice            Change    
    	‘Contemporary’ (or the ‘right’)
    	Words to describe it to your target audience- Start with the young
  • Increase of Monetary comes after increase of ‘positive’ associations with that art form- e.g. Slow fashion movement comes from the slow food movement
  • Common Language- group artists together?
  • Opening eyes Prejudices/ Traditional Stigmas- different depending on the audience
  • Beyond labels Contemporary language
  • Words as barriers- have to overcome it –use different words? Avoid using words?- monetary value comes after (if at all)
  • ‘Piggybacking’ with a more powerful? valuable? player Slow food/slow fashion – associating food/ craft quality food is high profile Humour (puns)! Ahead of the curve
  • Encountering craft in unexpected contexts
  • Get involved in a way that’s not threatening- PARTICIPATION
  • Gormley- Crosby-open
  • Eno - “ Art is everything that isn’t ‘necessary’”
  • Screwdriver analogy: the vital or the changing
  • Intrinsic Value/ Cultural Value/ Intellectual value- status/ prestige
  • The ‘handmade’ - bespoke, luxury, unique, trace-able e.g. Louis Vuitton, Wallpaper*
  • Who buys a thing, where it is shown?
  • Context
  • Action as much as text, ‘track record’- responsibility to tell the story