The arts team is dynamic, imaginative and ambitious. We work in collaboration with a diverse range of partners including residents, arts organisations, council staff and businesses to create positive, vibrant communities and environments suffused with creativity.
We offer a range of consultation and delivery services including:
- creative community engagement
- creative and cultural commissioning
- cultural planning – policy, strategy shaping and steering
- project management
- cultural industry advice and guidance
- information sharing, publicity and marketing
- facilitation and brokerage
The arts team manages the Pump House Gallery and a range of participatory projects throughout the year.
A commitment to public service
We work with a wide range of partners, across sectors, supporting culture and creativity to thrive. Our creative collaboration with artists, communities and organisations produces richly imaginative, excellent work, taking people beyond what they thought possible. We understand the importance of ensuring our work is grounded in the right level of policy and strategy to ensure longevity – we don’t like bureaucracy, but we know how it works.
We recognise that we are an integral part of the creative ecology. By this we mean we have a connecting role within the eclectic range of creative practices and professions; from small-scale to large, amateur to professional, organisations and individuals and including both the process and the product.
Leadership and advocacy
Through our relationships with Wandsworth Council, we have extensive links across London and are key contributors to strategic arts and cultural planning. We are a founding member of the London Culture Forum delivery team, and are constantly looking for new ways to champion arts and culture with stakeholders and decision-makers.
Collaboration and Brokerage
We make partnerships work. Our approach to collaboration is based on a respect for difference and a commitment to equality. Much of what we do is ‘invisible’ – we make links between artists, audiences, organisations and places. We introduce unlikely partners and support early conversations. We nurture the initial flame of an idea until it catches. We encourage others to take ownership and grow the work. As the project matures other partners and collaborators become more confident and our initial investment is superseded, we become, often rightly, invisible.
Creative problem-solving and imagination are vital to the process and product, and this inherent collaborative process is maintained through all areas of delivery.
Many projects have a voluntary community based steering group to ensure relevance and ownership with the target audiences.
Diversity and Equality
We acknowledge that diversity and the creative process are inherently linked. We put diversity at the heart of everything cultural and we know that addressing inequality is key to achieving equality and ensuring diversity.
We adopt a single equalities view as prompted by the Equalities Act 2010 recognising the named ‘protected characteristics’. In the interests of breaking down the barriers that prevent people from taking part in and enjoying the arts, we welcome a move away from ‘deficit model’ practices which try to redress imbalances through target-led approaches.
We take an ‘arts-led’ approach to place diversity at the core of our work whilst maintaining the encouragement of excellence, risk-taking and innovation as a primary priority. We are particularly keen to avoid setting apart or ‘ghettoising’ any particular group we are working with by making the work or project about them, rather than about the arts content itself; and wherever possible, use an arts-led approach to identify and nurture commonalities that can bring diverse backgrounds together, or create dialogue between them.
We are committed to being proactive from the ‘ground up’ towards creating the right conditions for diverse practise to thrive within the borough and across all aspects of our work, with a view to ensuring its relevance to the specific diversity profile of Wandsworth within a pan-London context.