It’s seven days since I began my new job at Arts Council England, so I thought that I would take the opportunity to share some thoughts and experiences from my first week as Chief Executive.
I’m very much in learning mode at the moment. As well as meeting the teams based in each of our nine offices around the country, I also wanted to ensure that I took the opportunity to meet some of the people who run the broad range of arts and cultural organisations that are supported by Arts Council England.
Digital Utopias, which took place at Hull Truck Theatre earlier this week, was a one-day conference which aimed to inspire and incite debate about how new technologies are enabling creativity across the arts. The conference set out to capture topical and diverse approaches to curation, archiving, collecting and creating from a range of art forms, from the visual arts to theatre.
Last year we commissioned a research study, from economists Daniel Fujiwara and George MacKerron, examining how different arts and cultural institutions affect levels of happiness. Richard Russell, our Director of Policy and Research, blogs about the results, which we've just published.
Our Midlands Area Director, Peter Knott, tells us how we need to share our stories in order to keep making the case for public investment in arts and culture.
I think we would all agree that we are working in a time of economic challenge, but opportunities, possibilities and above all a positive future remain obtainable. These are extraordinary times and we need to find extraordinary solutions.