Sunday, 2 March 2014

lost for words...

Sometimes newspaper covers say it all. Words defeat me.

"Bigotry is the disease of ignorance, of morbid minds; enthusiasm of the free and buoyant. Education & free discussion are the antidotes of both."
Thomas Jefferson to John Adams, August 1st 1816

Please forgive a scant blog posting this week as I rush to corral my life into some practical working order. This week sees the arrival of delegates in Manchester to the 11th International Conference on Urban Health with some pretty amazing speakers including Prof, Sir Michael Marmot and our very own Prof John Ashton. I’ll be contributing from an arts perspective and expanding on some of the thoughts I explored in Fremantle in 2012, that I further developed with Mike White in Inequalities the Arts and Public Health last year. Of course, my current foray into ‘film-making’ (well, reconstituting others via the net) will see the poor delegates subjected to a little light drone and some imagery of factory workers labouring over consumables. I’ll post this next week.

Next week sees my contribution to SICK 2014 in Brighton, where I’ll be chairing a debate* around how we live and die - and just how creativity, culture and the arts may have something to offer this, the most sensitive of subject matters. Have a read of my introductory essay on page 22 of this programme, and if there’s a question that you’d like to put to any of the panel, please drop an email, by clicking HERE. I'm particularly keen to hear from those of you involved in end of life care. The session will begin with a performance by Eva Meyer-Keller and Death is Certain.

To all of you who have responded favourably to my call for interest in an informal North West Arts and Health Research Network - a big THANK YOU. Once this next couple of weeks is out of the way, I’ll arrange a venue and a date and confirm a brilliant speaker who has confirmed that they will kick-start us off!!

Creative Employment Programme 
The next deadline for applications to the Creative Employment Programme is the 21st March 2014. The £15 million, National Lottery funded programme is aimed at increasing work and training opportunities for unemployed young people within the creative sector. The programme will provide funding for 6,500 new traineeships, apprenticeships and paid internship opportunities to help young unemployed people enter the arts and cultural workforce. Employment created will be in a wide range of disciplines, from technical to administrative roles, provided they are located in England and fall within the Arts Council England's footprint of: Music, Dance, Theatre, Literature, Visual Arts, Contemporary Craft, Combined Arts, Carnival, Circus, Galleries, Museums, and Libraries.  The programme will provide part wage grants to employers who create new apprenticeship and internship job opportunities for young unemployed people aged 16-24.  Employers will need to make an application for funding in order to access a part wage grant. Read more at:

Grants to Help New, Innovative Visual Arts Projects 
The Elephant Trust has announced that the next deadline for applications is the 14th April 2014. The Trust offers grants to artists and for new, innovative visual arts projects based in the UK. The Trust's aim is to make it possible for artists and those presenting their work to undertake and complete projects when confronted by lack of funds. The Trust supports projects that develop and improve the knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the fine arts. Priority is now being given to artists and small organisations and galleries who should submit well argued, imaginative proposals for making or producing new work or exhibitions. Arts Festivals are not supported. The Trust normally awards grants of up to £2,000, but larger grants may be considered. Read more at:

...and to top and tail this weeks post here is a vintage film of Erasure singing STOP. HA!

*For anyone who knows me, you’ll guess that I am pretty uptight that the panel is all-male! This isn’t by design - but reflects that two uber-star women I’d invited, had to back out because of impossible schedules. 

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