ACE’s 10 year plan for creativity

Individual creativity is at the core of Arts Council England’s new ten year strategy, announced today.

“Understanding of the role of culture in building and sustaining communities has come into clear focus and will sit at the heart of our work over the decade to come” writes ACE chair Nicholas Serota in his foreword.

The new strategy, entitled Let’s Create, which will be launched on April 20, has been devised over two years of consultation to encourage everyone to develop and express creativity through their lives, to encourage communities from villages to cities enjoy a collaborative approach to culture, and to promote the innovation, collaborativeness and internationalism of England’s cultural sector.

“Artists and cultural organisations continue to benefit from international exchange; at a point when this country is redefining its relationship with the wider world, our increasingly diverse culture is a national asset and gives us an international advantage, encouraging us to converse and collaborate freely across borders” Serota writes. 

As anticipated in AI on Friday, funding through Let’s Create is based on four investment principles: encouraging ambition and quality in cultural organisations; inclusivity and relevance; dynamism; and environmental responsibility. As the national development agency for creativity and culture, the report says the Arts Council, the report says, will work in partnerships to create new opportunities “for every person in England to get creative and enjoy brilliant culture”.

A delivery plan is to be published later this year outlining investment plans in more detail.

“This strategy will value the creative potential in each of us, provide communities in every corner of the country with more opportunities to enjoy culture, and celebrate greatness of every kind” Serota says today. “It marks a significant change, but an evolutionary one: honouring and building upon the successes of the last decade while confronting the challenges and embracing the exciting possibilities of the next. 

ACE’s shift in its emphasis for grants has been influenced by initiatives such as the 14-18 NOW commission We’re Here Because We're Here in 2016 (pictured), when hundreds of volunteers  dressed in First World War uniforms to mingle in town and country centres representing  those who died on the  first day of the Battle of Somme, conceived by the artist Jeremy Deller and  the National Theatre director Rufus Norris. 

“It seems to me to hold within it both the past and the future: standing as one of the tremendous achievements supported by the Arts Council’s last 10-year Strategy, under which we were able to invest in two exceptional artists to create a work of scale and ambition, while at the same time pointing the way forward” he said.


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