Sunday, 31 August 2014

☆ ☆


Great to see the work of Sarah Corbett and the Craftivists Collective thriving. Here’s her latest posting on the #wellMAKING Crafitivist Garden. I particularly like her update on the 5-Ways to Wellbeing!

Craft. Connect. Reflect. Challenge. Grow. 


Calling all Guerrilla Artists
Following the huge success of our first Guerrilla Arts Workshop in July, Alternative Futures Group are now inviting artist submissions for their 2014/15 Guerrilla Arts Project. - See more by clicking on the poster below.


The Trusthouse Charitable Foundation
The Trusthouse Charitable Foundation has announced that capital and revenue funding is available to support the work of local and national charities and not-for-profit organisations that address rural and urban deprivation. Within these two main headings, the Trust is interested in helping established projects which work in the fields of:
•  Community Support
•  Arts, Education & Heritage
•  Disability & Health Care
The type of projects the Trust are interested in funding include projects providing transport for the elderly, disabled or disadvantaged; contact networks for the young disabled; projects which encourage a sense of community such as community centres and village halls; employment training schemes especially those promoting local, traditional crafts; projects addressing issues such as drug/alcohol misuse or homelessness.

The Grants Committee meets quarterly to consider applications at the beginning of February, May, September and November. The deadlines for submitting applications are generally 2 months before the date of a meeting. Read more at: http://www.trusthousecharitablefoundation.org.uk/ 


Comic Relief
Comic Relief's grant making programme has moved away from funding in specialist areas, to supporting a wider range of work that meets with one of its four themes:
  • Safer Lives 
  • Better Futures 
  • Healthier Finances 
  • Fairer Society 

Comic Relief will make grants for up to 3 years, for a minimum of £10,000.   There is no maximum grant size, however an average grant size is for £130,000 over three years.  Comic Relief will consider applications for core costs from organisations where the entire work of the organisation fits strongly with the theme.  All applications must also fit with one of Comic Relief's priorities. For further information click on the beautiful Robert Walser quote above. 
(thanks Mark P for the image)


A sparse blog this week - swamped and slightly disconnected. Big fat blackberries picked from hedgerows and scratched purple hands as a distraction from all that lies ahead. The green, green fields and trees somehow overbearing.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

◎v◎ ◉v◉

From Urban Psychosis to Urban Death
Last Wednesday I was thrilled to welcome Professors John Read and Rhiannon Corcoran to the Holden Gallery, who at the invitation of my colleague Dr Kat Taylor, gave two quite remarkable presentations to coincide with the final days of the Holden Gallery exhibition, Urban Psychosis.


The Psychosis in Context event brought together people with experience of the ‘mental health system’ alongside psychologists, artists and interested others, and both speakers shared a passion for understanding the rich texture of the human condition. Whilst Rhiannon focused on a very real and unfolding research project, the Prosocial Place Project*, John gave a sweeping critique of the systems in place that label people, and the ways in which the prevailing model of psychiatry is focused on narrow biological factors, regardless of the lack of statistical significance in the evidence base.      

“For every British psychiatrist who thinks schizophrenia is caused primarily by social factors there are 115 who think it is caused primarily by biological factors.”

Focusing on the impact of adverse life experiences on our mental health, John questioned the motives of both biological psychiatrists and the pharmaceutical industry. He vociferously challenged the ‘evidence’ that schizophrenia is a’brain disease’ 

His presentation was entitled - Can Poverty Help Drive You Mad? - and the answer was an unequivocal yes! 30 years ago the relationship between ‘schizophrenia’ and poverty was described as ‘one of the most consistent findings in the field of psychiatric epidemiology’ (Eaton, 1980). 


Focusing on the impact of ethnicity, race and negative childhood experiences, he stressed that ‘deprived children are four times more likely to develop ‘non-schizophrenic psychotic illness’ but eight times more likely to grow-up to be ‘schizophrenic’ (Harrison, Gunnell, Glazebrook, Page, & Kwiecinski, 2001). Even among children with no family history of psychosis the deprived children were seven times more likely to develop ‘schizophrenia’,

Above all, John suggested that the redistribution of social power, the rejection of prejudice and bigotry and increased social justice, are central to public mental health. 

It was an inspiring evening that provoked debate and beautifully echoed the themes of the exhibition. My thanks to everyone who contributed

*I recommend this little film that shows how a simple intervention to disrupt our regulated lifestyles and introduce uncertainty, is liberating, unifying and ultimately very practical. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vzDDMzq7d0 


URBAN DEATH PROJECT
Because death is momentous, miraculous, and mysterious
Because the cycles of nature help us grieve and heal
Because our bodies are full of life-giving potential
We propose a new option for laying our loved ones to rest.

Although I don’t know the people who are developing this work, I have to share this website with you. It would be interesting to know what you think.

‘The Urban Death Project is a compost-based renewal system. At the heart of the project is a three-story core, within which bodies and high-carbon materials are placed. Over the span of a few months, with the help of aerobic decomposition and microbial activity, the bodies decompose fully, leaving a rich compost. The Urban Death Project is not simply a system for turning our bodies into soil-building material. It is also a space for the contemplation of our place in the natural world, and a ritual to help us say goodbye to our loved ones by connecting us with the cycles of nature.’  

You can find out more about this vision and its instigator Katrina Spade, by clicking on the image above. 


Lord Richard Attenborough
This weekend Lord Attenborough died aged 90. The actor, director and film-maker has been a good friend to Arts for Health and for many years was its patron. In 1999 he gave the opening adress to the first world symposium on arts and health (CHARTS), here at MMU and set the course on this rapidly expanding agenda. 

‘The arts in all their glorious manifestations are essential prescriptions for all those who are in pain, despair or in recovery. Creativity and imagination stimulate the spirit and, in so doing, speed the healing process. They are a powerful medicine indeed.’ 
Lord Attenborough; Culture, Health and the Arts, World Symposium at MMU


Lost is Found Theory
Friend of Arts for Health and artist on the I AM project, Leon Jakeman has work on exhibition at The Brink in Liverpool. Click on the image above for more information.


Take the Critical Spaces Survey - A Critical Catalyst for Socially-Engaged Art
Critical Spaces is a new and FREE web-based platform for socially-engaged artists, launching in Autumn 2014. It has been designed by artists, for artists.

17 workshops have been held across the UK to research and develop this platform. This survey is your opportunity to support the fine-tuning of Critical Spaces. You will also be given the opportunity to pre-register for the beta launch.

Critical Spaces will:

  • Increase artist visibility - by featuring a UK map and directory of artists.
  • Facilitate new artist connections - by allowing you to search for artists, both geographically and by practice.
  • Support critical thinking - through advocacy, resources and arranging ‘Critical Gatherings’.
To complete the survey click 'Take the Survey' or copy and paste the following web-address into your browser: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/criticalspaces
The success of Critical Spaces relies on your support - please share this survey with other socially-engaged artists. The survey will close on Friday 19th September 2014. Critical Spaces is an initiative by Hannah Hull in partnership wih ixia public art think tank.


Funding for Projects that Address Urban & Rural Deprivation 
The Trusthouse Charitable Foundation has announced that capital and revenue funding is available to support the work of local and national charities and not-for-profit organisations that address rural and urban deprivation. Within these two main headings, the Trust is interested in helping established projects which work in the fields of:
  • Community SupportArts, 
  • Education & Heritage
  • Disability & Health Care. 
The type of projects the Trust are interested in funding include projects providing transport for the elderly, disabled or disadvantaged; contact networks for the young disabled; projects which encourage a sense of community such as community centres and village halls; employment training schemes especially those promoting local, traditional crafts; projects addressing issues such as drug/alcohol misuse or homelessness.

The Foundation also provides funding to support capital projects at hospices throughout the UK; and on local projects providing support for mothers and babies in the first two years of life. The Grants Committee meets quarterly to consider applications at the beginning of February, May, September and November. The deadlines for submitting applications are generally 2 months before the date of a meeting. Read more at http://www.trusthousecharitablefoundation.org.uk/



Today is the singer Shirley Mansons birthday, as it would be Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, if she were still alive. Better known as the Nobel Prize winning nun, Mother Teresa, Agnes had some pretty queer ideas, best summed up by Christopher Hitchens:

“Mother Teresa was not a friend of the poor. She was a friend of poverty. She said that suffering was a gift from God. She spent her life opposing the only known cure for poverty, which is the empowerment of women and the emancipation of them from a livestock version of compulsory reproduction.” 


Saturday, 16 August 2014

Science + Culture = Beautiful Chaos

PSYCHOSIS IN CONTEXT
An Urban Psychosis event
Holden Gallery
20 August 6 - 8pm

The North West Arts and Health Network and Liverpool Psychosis Research Group, Institute of Psychology Health and Society, University of Liverpool presents: 



CAN POVERTY HELP DRIVE YOU MAD?
Professor John Read will summarise the research showing that, contrary to the prevailing ‘wisdom’ that psychosis is a genetically based ‘brain disorder’, poverty - and relative poverty - are powerful predictors of who ends up experiencing psychosis and being diagnosed with ‘schizophrenia’. Professor Rhiannon Corocoran will share initial research from the THE PROSOCIAL PLACE PROGRAMME exploring the relationship of the urban environment to mental health and wellbeing.

After working for nearly 20 years as a Clinical Psychologist and manager of mental health services in the UK and the USA, Professor John Read joined the University of Auckland, New Zealand. There he published over 100 papers in research journals, primarily on the relationship between adverse life events and psychosis. He also researches the negative effects of bio-genetic causal explanations on prejudice, and the role of the pharmaceutical industry in mental health. John is on the Executive Committee of the International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis www.isps.org and editor of the ISPS’s scientific journal ‘Psychosis’. In May 2013, John took up the post of Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Liverpool.

There are very limited tickets available for this free event:



THE RACE FOR THE PRIZE
As scientists race for the ultimate publicity prize - a vaccine for ebola - it’s interesting to see that squeaky-clean GSK are up-front in the race - or at least - being up front! 

“Meeting this goal will place an unprecedented timeframe on GlaxoSmithKline, the drug maker which runs the research programme in collaboration with the National Institutes of Health. The WHO has acknowledged that there is not enough time for the vaccine to undergo the standard, years-long clinical trials process, but has concluded that in this case it would be ethical to make it widely available with much less testing.”

With the WHO declaring the outbreak an international public health emergency,  it reminds me that a whole raft of viruses are out there, conveniently ignored whilst they are at arms length, in some far-off country. Whilst we live side-by-side with animals, farm them in terrible conditions, live in abject poverty on one hand, and travel the globe on the other, the Corona, Hendra, Ebola and the predicted and much feared mutation of H5N1, H7N9 (avian flu) and H1N1 (swine flu) will inevitably travel too. The book Spillover by David Quammen provides unsensational and essential reading around our relationship with animals and the inevitable zoonosis. 

Whilst the president of Liberia has very practically called for three days of prayer and fasting, as “the ultimate solution” to the Ebola virus, apparently a couple of boxes of the experimental drug ZMapp (not a GSK product) are winging their way to Africa, as I type. That in itself is interesting, as it’s already been given to Americans and a European, but not yet to Africans. Is that a continuation of colonialism, or perhaps a fear of ‘using’ African people as guinea pigs? Hmm, that doesn’t seem to have previously stopped big pharma exploiting large numbers of chemically-clean communities in developing countries as virgin-lab-rats.

Working with the Asia Europe Foundation on their Accurate Scenarios, Active Planning pandemic preparedness, public health project, has been hugely beneficial to me, but I will be curious to see how relevant and useful this foresight work has been, in the current situation. I recently watched the TV series UTOPIA which, far-fetched though it seemed, ran a storyline of government, big-pharma, conspiracy, eugenics and virus manipulation. It was equally potty, violent and compelling. Hoorah for popular culture, but somehow the current crisis in Africa and our incorruptible pharmaceutical industry have been conjoined in my mind - I feel a little unrest.


MEDICINE UNBOXED: FRONTIERS
We will explore the fact of human life and consciousness within a wider universe; our shared human matter and frailty; the flesh and margins of our bodies and minds; the sea and the land; the migrant, outsider and underprivileged; the lines that separate life from death; the development and grounds for moral thought; the separation between suffering and illness; the interface between the individual and society and the frontier between imagination and fact in our understanding of humanity, illness and medicine. Click on the image below for more info.



Funding for Digital Projects with a Social Impact 
The Nominet Trust which provides funding and support to imaginative social technology ventures has announced that the next funding round of its Social Tech Seed Investment Programme will open for applications in September 2014. Social Tech Seed is an investment programme that offers early-stage investment of between £15,000 and £50,000 to entrepreneurs who are looking to develop new ventures using digital for social impact. This programme provides funding and support to help entrepreneurs nurture, develop and test their ideas. The Trust is looking for applications that demonstrate the potential of technology to tackle some of the big social issues in sectors including education, employability, healthcare and the environment. Click on the full face swimming mask for more info.



Saturday, 9 August 2014

⇧⬆⇧⬆⇧⬆⇧⬆

TWEET...
What with no holidays planned this summer, I find myself busily occupied, catching up with all things written whilst the university is in ‘sleep mode’ - end of project reports, new project outlines and in overdrive with the first printed iteration of the Recoverist Manifesto, which all being well, will be published next month. After over a year of meticulous planning and complex ethical minefields successfully navigated, the Dementia and Imagination research project has started in earnest around the UK and Arts for Health’s own research site within the NHS in Derbyshire, has begun thanks to the drive and commitment of my colleague Kat Taylor, to whom I extend the biggest thanks. You can keep up to date with the project by clicking on the image.


From our own correspondent
In the second of our regular hook-ups with Victoria Hume in South Africa, her latest blog entry is an interview with Catherine Burns at WiSER, the Wits Institute for Social and Economic Research at Wits, the University of the Witwatersrand. 

“No-one is saying this research is not worthwhile, or it’s not dignified, or it’s too – Ivory Tower-ish; and why? Because we’ve had 15, 20, 30 years of people researching, let’s say, the harder social, political, economic questions related to, say, mining, and we’re making very little headway {…} I didn’t feel this 15 years ago at all. People would have said oh that’s just a waste of money … this is just playing at the edges of the critical need – we have to feed children. The choices were: do we feed children? do we inoculate? … do we work out … resources for an AIDS vaccine? Or do you … play around with drama? I don’t think people are making those kinds of distinctions any more.”

Read the full interview by clicking on the image by Marna Hatting.


Matchbox City takes on the Giants of Liverpool
Matchbox City has had a spectacular time in Liverpool since the launch of their site-specific installation at the Brink as part of Independents Biennial 2014
They made it on to the cover of the Big Issue in the North, whose vendors sold the magazine amidst an army of little matchstick people who had popped up in the businesses and bollards along Bold St. Matchstick Lilliputians even braved the enormous crowds who flocked to the city to see the magnificent Giant Spectacular. They welcomed visitors to our exhibition at the Brink to join in with free workshops co-facilitated by members of Crisis Skylight Merseyside. They created matchstick figures and matchbox buildings and had some incredible responses including matchstick minions and even giraffes! August sees Connecting Threads take Matchbox City to the good people of Rochdale and Manchester. Artists Emily Hayes and Becky Waite are working creatively with people affected by homelessness in the North West


Project Manager, Arts + Cultural Commissioning
Are you passionate about the role arts and culture can play in building healthy lives and communities? NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Create Gloucestershire are looking for an exceptional project manager to work with them and key local authority partners to realise a radical vision for how arts and culture are commissioned to improve health and well-being outcomes across Gloucestershire. This post is offered as an 18 month freelance contract. The fee is fixed at £35,000 inclusive of VAT and expenses. We anticipate the post holder will work approximately 3 days a week. The post will be jointly managed by Create Gloucestershire and NHS Gloucestershire CCG. The post will be based at Sanger House, Gloucester Business Park. All details by going to: http://www.creategloucestershire.co.uk/news/2014/8/6/job-project-manager-arts-cultural-commissioning 


Arts for Health friend and collaborator Vic McEwan embarking on a weeks residency in a juvenile prison in Wagga and playing the razor wire that surrounds the prison.

Eranda Foundation
Deadline: 31 August 2014
The Eranda Foundation Grant is for charities undertaking projects for research into medicine and education, encouraging the arts and supporting social welfare in the UK. It was created by Sir Evelyn de Rothschild in February 1967 to support the advancement of learning in the arts and sciences and in particular for the promotion and development of medical and scientific research including:
  • Promotion of original research and supporting the continuation of existing research into medicine and education, primarily medical and scientific education.
  • Encouraging the arts, primarily education and outreach work.
  • Supporting social welfare.
For social welfare projects, priority will be given to national activities, or if local, the priority will be Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire. For more details, email eranda@btconnect.com


Healthy Hearts Grants 
Heart Research UK has announced that its Health Hearts Grants Programme is open for applications. Heart Research UK Healthy Heart Grants support innovative projects designed to promote heart health and to prevent or reduce the risks of heart disease in specific groups or communities. Grants of up to £10,000 are available to community groups, voluntary organisations and researchers who are spreading the healthy heart message. The closing date for this funding round is the 31st August 2014. Read more by clicking on the love hearts.

Garfield Weston Foundation
The Garfield Weston Foundation helps small, local community organisations and covers a wide range of charitable activity. Areas funded include: education, arts, health, environment, community, youth, religion and welfare. Grants of up to £50,000 are available. There are no formal deadlines for submitting applications. Read more at http://www.garfieldweston.org/


Yesterday evening I had the most wonderful solitary night-time walk in the hills above my town. Of course, whilst I’d been working, the day had been sunny and now the evening was stormy, but the air was beautiful and clean and the grey churning skies were charged with electricity. In that half-light, the fields seemed far greener than I’d ever seen in the daylight and amongst the thrashing bracken, the heather more vivid than any migraine I’ve experienced. I felt quite lucky to be alive and immersed in thoughts of multiple parallel universes, (where other versions of this experience of being, might be rolling out). I was only brought back to reality by the calling of an owl. There she was, just looking at me - haughty and beautiful. We looked at each other for the longest moment. Eye to eye. Then she was gone. Quite beautiful. 

I rushed home and made this small film...




Sunday, 3 August 2014

木 漏 れ 日

...when sunlight filters through the trees

Thank you for reading this blog, contributing to its content, (knowingly or unknowingly) and for the occasional lovely email. I’m taking a little time out to focus on the more important things in life, so a short and sweet blog this week. I wasn’t going to bother posting anything, but am compelled to let you know that this months blog statistics have been the highest since it first began! We must be doing something right! So this month a big thank you, ačiū, ви благодарам, спасибі, спасибо, дзякуй, 謝謝, dank u, danke, diolch i chi, dziękuję, go raibh maith agat, gracias, grazie, આભાર, merci, ありがとう, tack, tak, takk, terima kasih, teşekkür ederim, 감사합니다 and хвала.

Thoughts that might have been in a longer blog (and that may be expanded another time): the raising of the Palestinian flag in Preston - smiling - the link between Utopia, Ebola and the flu - pain - gratitude - friendship - and the conjoined reality of obesity, comfort and poverty 


For those of you wanting a summer read, click on the image below for the notes of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Arts Health and Wellbeing held on the 2nd July.


Clore Poetry & Literature Awards 
The Clore Duffield Foundation has announced that the seventh funding round under its £1 million programme to fund poetry and literature initiatives for children and young people across the UK is now open for applications. Through the programme, schools, FE colleges, community groups, libraries and other arts/cultural organisations can apply for grants of between £1,000 and £10,000 to support participatory learning projects and programmes focused on literature, poetry and creative writing for under 19s. The closing date for applications is the 6th March 2015. Read more at: http://www.cloreduffield.org.uk/Grant_Programmes/Clore_Poetry_and_Literature_Awards.htm

Help transform participatory arts in the UK: an invitation
Artists, arts organisations, policy makers, funders, employers, commissioners and training providers across the UK are part of a rich and thriving tradition of participatory arts. Between now and spring 2015, ArtWorks, a Paul Hamlyn Foundation initiative, will publish the final findings from five years’ research to show how, together, we can build on this tradition and reap new benefits by strengthening support for the artists involved. We are driven by a passion for participatory arts and a belief that collaborating to strengthen support for artists will lift the practice to a new level of confidence, recognition and ambition, leading to higher quality experiences for participants. 

Our work draws on the learning of five ArtWorks pathfinder partnerships which have spent the last three years conducting research, building on the wealth of existing good practice and exploring potential solutions to support artists to work in participatory settings. ArtWorks covers the critical roles of all stakeholders in developing practice in participatory settings – from employers and commissioners to training providers, policy makers, funders and artists – by focusing on three key areas of understanding:
  • The training and development needs of artists
  • Methods for promoting quality across all aspects of the work
  • Creating the conditions needed to make change happen
Whether you’ve been actively involved in the supporting artists conversation, or are new to the debate and are interested in improving support for artists, please join us as we prepare to publish our final report and recommendations next spring. You’ll be able to take part in debate through our website and access what we have learned up to now. You’ll also receive regular ArtWorks briefings and comment as we publish findings on everything from learning methods to a code of practice principles, quality benchmarks and research on the ‘demand side’. There’ll be material of interest to all stakeholders. You can download the first of these briefings, covering the headline findings of a unique survey of 1,000 artists at http://www.artworksphf.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/ARTWORKS-BRIEFING-ONE.pdf Read more at: http://www.artworksphf.org.uk

Sunday, 27 July 2014

☆ + ☆ = ☆ ☆


What a couple of weeks we’ve had! On top of the I AM symposium and exhibition, on Friday evening the author Will Self blew us away with his thoughts on Urban Psychosis at the Holden Gallery. This sold-out event saw Will on spectacular form questioning what it is to be disconnected from reality in urban life and I’ll share more of this very soon. The exhibition continues until 22nd August, open Monday to Friday, Details at the Holden Gallery. Read a report on this event by Nigel Barlow on the About Manchester website by clicking HERE.


I’ve not seen it yet, but the V & A have a new exhibition that runs into early 2015 called Disobedient Objects. “From Suffragette teapots to protest robots, this exhibition will be the first to examine the powerful role of objects in movements for social change. It will demonstrate how political activism drives a wealth of design ingenuity and collective creativity that defy standard definitions of art and design.” Looks brilliant. Click on the 'Occupy George' overprinted dollar bill (2011) by Andy Dao and Ivan Cash.


I’m really not quite sure how how to write up this blog without making any reference to the ongoing suffering of people in Palestine. So here’s a 2008 photograph by Taysir Batniji, of the ubiquitous watchtowers that constantly survey the people of Palestine, inducing an urban psychosis beyond anything I can imagine.


As Malaysian cyclist, Azizulhasni Awang made it to the quarterfinals of the men's cycling event at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow last week, two words on his gloves upset the Games authorities. With the message "Save Gaza" emblazoned on them, he continued a proud tradition of having the guts to use his position to raise public awareness and protest. As streets, homes, hospitals and schools fall to the onslaught, the number of Palestinians killed over the last 19 days has gone over 10000. Unsurprisingly, the Commonwealth Games Federation said the incident could be in breach of a rule avoiding "politics" in the Games, and said it will “contact the Malaysian chef de mission to discuss the incident and take any action," reported the Associated Press.


News coming in from China....
Liesbeth Avern-Briers who runs the arts and health organisation, Lizzie Bee in Hong Kong has made it into the South China Morning Post with a feature on her work in schools which focuses on mental health and wellbeing. Brilliant work Lizzie! Click on the photograph below for more on this.



Creative Conversations in Arts and Wellbeing
Is an event for artists and practitioners delivering arts and wellbeing projects. 
It's an informal supper club which will allows room for sharing practice whilst discussing ideas & inspirations. The first event will be hosted in Manchester city centre by 42nd Street; an organisation delivering services to young people under stress including counselling, therapy and group work including an arts and culture programme.

The session will have a focus on mental health and we will be joined by a couple of 42nd Street staff as we discuss good mental health in the delivery of arts and wellbeing projects, thinking about both participant and practitioner. Places are limited, if you would like to attend, please r.s.v.p to nic_on_tour@yahoo.co.uk by Thursday 7th August with a couple of lines stating how this topic relates to your work. 
Wednesday 13th August, 5-7pm @ 87-91 Great Ancoats Street, Manchester, M4 5AG


Baring Foundation Arts and Older People Programme 2014 Opens for Applications 
The Baring Foundation has announced that its Arts Projects programme 2014 is now open for applications. The programme will continue its theme of arts and older people. This year, the Foundation are inviting professional arts organisations to commission work with older artists (70+) who have the craft, the vision and the interest to explore age and ageing and to produce imaginative, original and compelling new works in any medium for public exhibition, performance, publication or digital distribution.

The lead applicant must be a not for profit arts organisation working in the UK, whose core purpose is commissioning, presenting, or producing arts (music, dance, theatre, visual arts, literature, film, or multi-disciplinary forms). Lead applicant arts organisations must have an income in 2013-14 of at least £400,000. Education establishments, hospitals, care homes and housing associations, local authorities, general charities and other non-arts bodies may be involved but may not be the lead applicant. Grants within a range of £5,000 to £25,000.
There is a two stage application process. The closing date for stage 1 applications is the 1st September 2014. Applications successful at this stage will be invited to submit a full proposal by the 10th November 2014. www.baringfoundation.org.uk/program.htm

Grants to Help New, Innovative Visual Arts Projects 
The Elephant Trust has announced that the next deadline for applications is the 29th September 2014. The Trust offers grants to artists and for new, innovative visual arts projects based in the UK. The Trust's aim is to make it possible for artists and those presenting their work to undertake and complete projects when confronted by lack of funds. The Trust supports projects that develop and improve the knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the fine arts. Priority is now being given to artists and small organisations and galleries who should submit well argued, imaginative proposals for making or producing new work or exhibitions. Arts Festivals are not supported. The Trust normally awards grants of up to £2,000, but larger grants may be considered. http://elephanttrust.org.uk/docs/intro.html

Random Acts Network Applications Sought 
The Arts Council has announced that it plans to invest up to £3 million funding to fund five new Random Acts Network Centres over a 3 year period 2015-18. As part of this plan, Arts organisations can now apply for up to £600,000 of funding to form and lead brand these new Random Acts Network Centres. The aim of these centres is to create partnerships with other cultural, educational and creative media organisations, help develop young talent, aged 16-24, and provide entry points for the arts and creative industries. Each partnership will form a ‘network' within each of the five Arts Council Areas (London, North, Midlands, South East and South West) to deliver education, training and production support to facilitate the creation of around 120 high quality short films per year (approximately 24 films per network per year) for distribution on Channel 4 platforms. Films produced by the network centres will be played on the Random Acts strand on television and online. Applications should be for work that will be undertaken between February 2015 and March 2018. The deadline to submit applications is 5pm on 25th September 2014. Read more at:

Funding for Artists and Bands 
PRS for Music Foundation and Arts Council England have announced that the next application deadline for the Momentum Music Fund is the 12th August 2014. The Momentum Music Fund is a £500,000 fund to develop the careers of talented artists and bands. It is anticipated that grants of between £5,000 and £15,000 will be awarded to between 50 and 75 artists/bands over the next 2 years. Applications can be submitted by the artists themselves or those who are working on their behalf, e.g. a manager, an independent label or publisher. Priority will be given to those that haven't been funded by PRS for Music Foundation in the previous 12 months.