creative conversations 6

21 Nov

Welcome to episode six of creative conversations. This week I finish my conversation with Alan Rogers, Cultural Coordinator as part of the Weymouth and Portland 2012 Operations Team, at Weymouth Pavilion.

Right click (or Ctrl click on a Mac) on this link (Creative Conversations #06) to download (Save Link As). Or subscribe to our podcast, or subscribe via iTunes.

We start by talking about how he balances the difficult decisions of working within a limited budget. Of how he can employ local artists and use his budget to support the local creative community, of funding smaller, upcoming, local artists in their practice, and attracting large audiences by hiring bigger name artists.

Alan says that the South West have taken a different approach to London’s cultural Olympiad programme in that they have not employed big names, but people who can engage other people. He talks about the difference in culture and artists expectations he has witnessed around the world. Of how artists in Italy will probably have a main job, like being a waiter. While a UK artist expect to have funding and grants, and have come to rely on these.

Going on from Alan talking about UK artists over reliance on public funding, we then go on to hear Alan’s views on whether there is any value in funding the arts. Should the money spent on the Arts Council rather be spent on housing or health?

Alan asks the question do we have the culture of philanthropy in this country towards the arts? Is it in our DNA?

We go onto hear what Alan thinks about the long lasting effect of the cultural Olympiad on this area. He feels that local councilors now see the benefits of investment in arts and culture has been made. That during the Olympics people will more likely encounter a cultural experience, as the sailing happens right out there in the bay and viewing will be very limited.

That while you can say if you spend £15,000 it will bring in many people, who will spend this amount of money. But it is more important about raising the profile of the place. Its about getting a reputation for the place. In this instance you cannot really apply the rules of economic spend to the possible cultural legacy, its what is left. There are moments, sparkly points in people’s minds, the wow factor.

I end by picking Alan’s experience about ways artists can build in sustainability in the incredibly precarious career of artists practice. To answer this question, Alan says to just keep challenging yourself, and keep a spirit of “its good to learn”. To have more then one string to your bow, to keep fluid, keep moving.

There is no website to find out about Weymouth & Portland cultural Olympiad programme as yet. One will be coming online in 2012.

I hope you will find this new show on art, culture and the economics of being an artist in Dorset interesting and engaging. I welcome your input to future episodes.


3 Responses to “creative conversations 6”

  1. ivonoates November 23, 2011 at 2:58 pm #

    Thank you Joe and Alan,
    It is good to hear pertinent issues discussed by people embedded at different levels in the system, while one is always aware of the hierarchical nature of the arts institutions in UK and what the ‘party line’ will be. I hope the potential for inspiration does come about and the arts in Dorset can grow with experimental contemporary art forms.

  2. 51joe November 23, 2011 at 7:41 pm #

    thanks ivon, been finding it heartening in the range of conversations i’ve been having with artists. still struggling to keep these conversations down to 30 min, which is making the editing very time consuming and difficult.


  1. creative conversations episodes « creative conversations - May 9, 2012

    […] This week I finish my conversation with Alan Rogers, Cultural Coordinator as part of the Weymouth and Portland 2012 Operations Team, at Weymouth Pavilion. […]

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