Antony Sher dies

Antony Sher dies

Sir Antony Sher, perhaps the finest actor of his generation, has died aged 72, the Royal Shakespeare Company announced today.

TAITMAIL   Behind the battlements

TAITMAIL Behind the battlements

Nottingham Castle Museum was doing well, for a museum without much real history left to talk about, and it was getting a healthy 150,000 visitors a year - about half what Stonehenge gets - before it closed for its £30m refurb which it was hoped would double the numbers. 

Shebeen culture wins Turner Prize

Shebeen culture wins Turner Prize

Array Collective, the Belfast co-operative of 11 artists whose nominated work, The Druithaib’s Ball, is an installation centred on an illicit Irish drinking den described as “a place to gather outside the sectarian divides”, has won the 2021 Turner Prize.

ACE’s £38.3m for local culture

ACE’s £38.3m for local culture

Arts Council England has today announced grants worth £38.3m for the programme that makes partners of cultural organisations and communities.

Bird to quit SOLT and UK Theatre

Bird to quit SOLT and UK Theatre

Julian Bird is to stand down as CEO of the Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre after more than 11 years. 

THE ART OF PHOTOJOURNALISM Image of the month

THE ART OF PHOTOJOURNALISM Image of the month

London’s East End, June, 1957, by Frank Pocklington

Alan Sparrow talks to Frank Pocklington about his favourite Picture Post photograph

Sacha Craddock stands down at New Contemporaries

Sacha Craddock stands down at New Contemporaries

Sacha Craddock is stepping down as chair of New Contemporaries, the organisation set up more than 70 years ago to support emerging visual artists with touring exhibitions of their work.

Eilish McGuinness takes over at NHLF

Eilish McGuinness takes over at NHLF

Eilish McGuinness is to take over from Ros Kerslake as CEO of the National Heritage Lottery Fund at the end of the year.

Lewisham’s year of diverse culture

Lewisham’s year of diverse culture

Lewisham is to be London’s next Borough of Culture for 2022, focusing on diversity, activism and the climate emergency in a programme that was announced at the Rivoli Ballroom today.

Emmie Kell is ACE's new museums chief

Emmie Kell is ACE's new museums chief

Emmie Kell, CEO of the Cornwall Museums Partnership, is to be Arts Council England’s new director of museums and cultural property.

Merger creates Creative UK

Merger creates Creative UK

The Creative Industries Federation and Creative England have merged today to become Creative UK, bringing together the advocacy work of one body and the investment expertise and practical support of the other.

Kathryn Jacob to chair HOME

Kathryn Jacob to chair HOME

Kathryn Jacob, CEO of the cinema advertising agency Pearl & Dean, is to be the new chair of the Manchester arts centre HOME.

33% of musicians still earning nothing from music

33% of musicians still earning nothing from music

A third of our professional musicians are earning nothing from music and 87% are earning less than £1,000 a month, according to new figures today from the charity Help Musicians.

£1m hunt for young museumgoers as ‘perfect storm’ looms

£1m hunt for young museumgoers as ‘perfect storm’ looms

The Art Fund has launched a £1m fundraising campaign to help museums attract under 24-year-olds.

Another £107m for arts recovery

Another £107m for arts recovery

Almost 1,000 arts organisations are to benefit from a new round of £107m worth of grants from the government’s Culture Recovery Fund.

£5m for community jubilee parties

£5m for community jubilee parties

A new Arts Council fund is offering £5m to help voluntary and community organisations celebrate the Queen’s platinum jubilee next year.

Curators share £300k development funding

Curators share £300k development funding

The Art Fund has named the 11 museum professionals that will share the Headley Fellowship’s grants this year worth £302,500 to extend their collections knowledge.

THE WORD   Under-estimating the power of the tweet

THE WORD Under-estimating the power of the tweet

Social media have become essential to arts organisations, says a new report, and often rely on underpaid and under-resourced operators. Alice Kent of the Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre asks what can professional networks, industry, funders and policy-makers do to ensure that digital workers are better supported

Birthday royal sculptures for Albert Hall

Birthday royal sculptures for Albert Hall

The Royal Albert Hall has commissioned sculptures of the Queen, Prince Philip, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert from four young artists to mark its 150th anniversary.

Ten Manchester music creatives offered £1k development packages

Ten Manchester music creatives offered £1k development packages

Manchester International Festival is offering £1,000 each to ten local musicians to help them create new work as part of its MIF Sounds initiative, launched last year at the height of the pandemic.

Florence Nightingale joins Lord Mayor’s parade

Florence Nightingale joins Lord Mayor’s parade

Marking the completion of her 200th birthday celebrations., Florence Nightingale joined the Lord Mayor of London’s Show at the weekend.

Giant print plant plays host to classical experiment

Giant print plant plays host to classical experiment

A printing plant that once one of the largest in Europe has been the venue for a pioneering immersive concert.

Mariam Zulfiqar to lead Artangel

Mariam Zulfiqar to lead Artangel

Mariam Zulfiqar, Forestry England’s contemporary art programme manager since March this year, is to be the new director or of the public art producer Artangel.

Barbican takes action after damning discrimination report

Barbican takes action after damning discrimination report

The Barbican has vowed to take decisive action “to build a culture where staff feel confident, valued and respected” following a damning report by an independent investigation team.

Arts letting down minorities in workforce

Those working in the creative industries are still predominantly from the middle classes, excluding those from BAME and working class backgrounds.

The shock findings are in a new report, Panic! Social Class, Taste and Inequalities in the Creative Industries, the first sociological study on social mobility in the cultural industries, released today by Create London and Arts Emergency http://www.createlondon.org/panic/blog/.

Based on a project launched in 2015 and led by academics from the universities of Edinburgh and Sheffield, the report finds that 2.7% of those working in galleries and museums, 4.8% of those who work in music and 4.2% of those who work in film are of BAME backgrounds, compared with just under 10% of the UK workforce overall. 12.6% of those who work in publishing are from working-class origins compared with 35% of the workforce overall.

The creative industries have also been slow to respond to changes in policy and practice designed to tackle inequality and exclusion, the report finds. Despite the establishment of the minimum wage and sector-led calls to restrict unpaid work, inequalities are reinforced by the continued and historical prevalence of unpaid work and low-paid labour within the industries, resulting in many entry-level jobs excluding all but the most privileged.

In the Panic! survey almost 90% of the 2,487 respondents reported working for free in some way, with just under half of respondents under 30 having done at least one unpaid internship. 

 “Social research has long sought to sound the alarm about who is making and consuming culture in the UK. As this report, which builds on extensive work by the scholarly community, shows the cultural sector is in need of radical action to tackle the inequalities in its workforce. In particular the issue of unpaid work, which we highlight, is closely linked to the more subtle barriers to entry in the form of tastes and values” said Dr David O’Brien of Edinburgh University and lead author of the report. “At the same time, our analysis suggests that arts and media workers need to better understand the role of privilege in the formation of cultural tastes and success in creative employment, so that their industries can become more in touch with the rest of the population”.

In partnership with Create London the Barbican is to hold an In Focusseminar to discuss social class within the creative and cultural sector on 27 June, using the Panic! report as a basis

.

 “By releasing this study, and cultural programme, including hosting a day of talks and activities, we hope to not discourage nor shed a bad light on our beloved industries, but to open up doors and possibilities to how we might make our industries more representative of and relevant to the population as a whole” saidHadrian Garrard, director of Create London.

“We are also creating Interchange, a new group comprised of 18-25 year olds, to help us develop new ideas that address these issues. We need to acknowledge the role that privilege plays and initiate ways to tackle it from the ground up, rather than attempt to tame the issue with schemes that do not work”.

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