Arts Council gives £2.3m for "diversity and digital innovation"

The latest round of Art Council's Ambition for Excellence programme will give four organisations support for "the creation of work for major national moments, enabling organisations to reach international and national audiences".

  • Watershed Arts receives £561,134 for a three-year programme to support UK and international creative producers in "engaging communities and delivering public-space projects" as well as creating a network of "individuals, organisations and communities sharing ideas, skills and projects".
  • Manchester International Festival will get £640,000 for expansion into public work and digital, including developing talent in the city and showing how live large-scale art can exist in digital.
  • Project Art Works will gain £573,611 to create and deliver EXPLORERS which "aims to increase public, artists’ and arts professionals’ awareness of the extraordinary contribution people with complex needs can make to mainstream culture".
  • NewcastleGateshead Initative, in partnership with Northern Roots and Newcastle University, is granted £595,190 for Freedom City 2017 bringing world-renowned artists and local diverse talent for a three-year programme to challenge the way artists and organisations programme and present diversity in their work. 

Alison Clark, National Director, Combined Arts & Programme Lead, Ambition for Excellence, Arts Council England said: "This round of awards highlights some game changing innovations across the arts, and in particular shows new creative approaches to diversity and digital.These projects will have longer term impacts far beyond the places where activity happens, while producing exceptional art and developing talented artists and producers."

Image is Martin Luther King Jr Painting by Derek Russell for Freedom City 2017. Image from

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