A new body aiming to oversee a renaissance in Brighton & Hove’s arts scene launches on 19th January at the Komedia in Gardner Street. The city’s Arts Commission, chaired by Jackie Lythell OBE, comprises leading local arts, culture and media figures.
The Commission will meet four times a year, will establish a number of Working Parties to develop ideas, policy and projects and it also aims to hold an annual conference type event for the sector.
Last year it secured a grant of £750,000 from the government’s Urban Cultural Fund, set up following the UK-wide competition for the 2008 European Capital of Culture title. Sponsorship will bring the total available for a two year arts programme to £1m.
The full two year programme goes under the banner Making a Difference and has four principal strands: Creating – supporting new work including running a New Commissions programme to be launched on the 19th of January, Transforming – focusing on the physical infrastructure and environment of the city, this strand includes a lighting project, a creative recycling project and projects in our parks and gardens.
Living in Brighton & Hove - focusing on projects that will make a positive and permanent difference to people’s lives, this strand includes projects in schools, an arts and health programme and a festival celebrating the creativity of older people .
Working – projects aimed at professional development for arts groups and the creative industries sector. The New Commissions scheme is the body’s first major project. Artists and arts groups are urged to visit the website www.brightonandhoveartscommission.org.uk for details on how to submit ideas for new work. A total of five awards will be made for projects between £5,000 and £50,000.
Chair of the local Arts Commission Jackie Lythell said, “The Arts Commission is an independent group of talented and experienced people coming together in an informally constituted organisation to support the further development of culture for Brighton and Hove. I believe that this is a fantastic and forward looking initiative for the city.”
Chair of the council’s culture committee Sue John said, “The two year programme that the Arts Commission is leading has been made possible through additional funding being awarded to the city in recognition of its status as a regional cultural centre. No extra costs will fall on local taxpayers. It will enable us to use the arts to benefit people’s lives and improve the appearance of our city.”
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