Making It Big
In 2010 The Making ran a day-long symposium to inspire designer-makers to apply for large-scale commissions, run public workshops and create interventions as part of a portfolio career. The symposium looked at the wealth of transferable skills developed as a maker and demonstrated how makers can develop and use those skills outside conventional making practice to produce large scale work for a variety of clients and communities.
Chaired by Simon Fraser, there were some inspiration talks from industry experts such as Helen Marriage from Arichoke Projects – who almost had the audience in tears with Royal de Luxe’s ‘The Sultan’s Elephant’. We also heard from Sam Wilkinson about the amazing projects delivered by Insite Arts, Claire Catterall about the exciting programme she’s curating at the Embankment Galleries at Somerset House and the spectacular cultural events delivered by award-winning artist Keith Khan. Makers David Rhys Jones and Andy Hazell also shared their fascinating, and often humorous, experiences.
It was also great to hear from Cockpit Arts alumini Lucy Fergus (pictured above) who gave her advice for running workshops and managing large-scale commissions. Here are Lucy’s tops tips for delivering successful public art installations:
1. Make sure you have been issued with a contract before you start work and always take a deposit at this stage. Have a template for risk assessments covering all aspects of your work that can be adapted as appropriate (requirements will differ depending on the commissioning body).
2. Accept any support that is offered by the commissioning body when installing – even if it’s a representatives presence on site. Public spaces can be a real challenge to work in – passers by are curious and constantly ask questions. If possible have an assistant or friend who is familiar with your work and can answer all questions so that you’re not distracted from the task in hand (chatting to the public whilst working 3 metres from the ground is not the easiest thing to do!)
3. Don’t cut corners with public liability insurance – this is a key responsibility when working to commission. Seek advice from your insurance broker/employer if at all unsure – it’s better to be safe than sorry!
4. Get top notch photos of your final works – professional portfolio images definitely lead to bigger and better projects!
Filed under: Uncategorized | Leave a Comment
Tags: commisioning, Industry Experts, Seminars