New Arts North 2008-2018
- New Arts North was established in 2008, and became a company in 2009, closing in 2018. A record of its activity is held in the form of an archive of photos, film, clinical data, reports, and case studies.
- It was a social enterprise set up to design and deliver socially-engaged projects in Cumbria, of short and long-term duration; working with schools, arts venues, museums, the NHS (the Early Intervention into Psychosis teams), councils (for long-term mental health programs, and rurally/socially isolated communities) and inclusive arts organisations (working with young people with learning disabilities and autism).
- It brought in £290,000 of social funding into Cumbria over 6 years, including a research grant from Northern Rock Foundation of £60,000; and contracting 10 other practitioners in that time.
- Our approach interpreted art as a means of collective research, using democratic models of engagement, giving rise to positive identity construction or restoration. Qualities of the artistic process, such as freedom and rigour, were balanced by the making of a space for a variety of aesthetic judgements.
- It is my aim to chart the story of this enterprise, and locate it within the context of contemporary art.
- I also hope to work across other research fields to mobilise the findings into a form that is useful to more projects of this kind in the future.