OllieWhich is an excellent thing to be as an arts freelancer, especially in the depths of our Narnian Winter (see my September post). No time for my usual considered post on an aspect of arts management or cultural policy, mostly because I’ve been writing my best thoughts for other publications.

These two pieces for the good people at Guardian Culture Professionals Network on Freelancing in the Arts were popular in January:

1. How to be an Arts Freelancer in 2013

2. Arts Freelancing: Learning to support yourself (with the help of others)

I’ve also been doing a lot of writing for a-n Artsnews. Last week I went to the  important Taking the Offensive: Defending Freedom of Expression in the Arts conference. Organised by Index on Censorship and expertly chaired by Jude Kelly, it was held at the Southbank Centre and was the most substantial, important and timely conference I’ve been to in a very long time. I can’t praise it enough and hope that the issues and complexities it raised will continue to be highlighted for a long time to come.

I’ve been to the London Art Fair for the first time and loved it, especially the curated contemporary Arts Projects section. I didn’t get to spend as much time there looking at the huge range of amazing and inspiring artworks as I wanted – definitely to be rectified next year. (If you’re interested in comparing it with Frieze Art Fair, this is something I wrote about Frieze in 2009).

Museums Sheffield, the Charitable Trust that manages the Millennium Gallery, Weston Park and Graves Gallery,  have had a very difficult couple of years, with their grant funding reduced by a huge 37%. How are they coping? Find out here.

In project news, I am delighted to announce that the Arts Council has offered me Research and Development funding for my new project, Interpretation Matters. More on this on a future post as I get it going, but to kick off, here is a rant I’ve written for axis on why I think written interpretation in galleries is so important.

Finally, a big HELLO and WELCOME  to all my new twitter followers. I’m going to do a big follow back soon – and look forward to reading your thoughts on the arts and other matters!

Oliver yawning

If you are wondering about the cat pictures, this is my cat Oliver Moggy, who knew how to relax, and sadly died 10 days ago. A kind of public memorial, and a gift of cuteness.


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