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Working with Artists to make Better Communities

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Contents 2 3 7 11 13

Welcome Our Artists Partners in our Community Impact and Social Outcomes Sustainability

15 19 21 23 25

Education and Learning Nunnery Gallery Arts and Events Out and About Financials

The staff team at a briefing at the newly leased Stratford Studios (see page 8)


Welcome from the

Chief Executive This year has been one of tremendous growth at Bow Arts. Our commitment to community regeneration is as strong as ever, and the wherewithal to deliver on that promise is ever growing. For this we have our artists and our partners to thank.

Our mission is to support community renewal in East London by delivering arts and creative services through a financially sustainable model

Every year we carry out a lifestyle survey of our artists and the results continue to confirm our views. Our artists are highly qualified professionals, regularly exhibiting and featuring in the media. They actively support the arts community by being regular visitors to exhibitions and taking part in networking events. They are committed to their communities, living and working close by their studios and they are economically active, generating income through self-employment and employment within the creative industries. Our partners comprise a whole range of organisations working, as we do, to deliver social change. From local authorities to grant givers, from schools to community organisations—we all have a desire to ‘make a difference’. And this year has seen a growing confidence in Bow Arts’ ability to be part of that process. For this support, I thank them all. In terms of internal developments, we have instigated new finance and management reporting systems and our evaluation and monitoring processes are continuing to develop. Our focus on quality delivery has led to these changes and we hope will give us clearer insights into the value, both economic and social, of our activities. And finally, sustainability has been a key issue over the last year and you can read about some of our initiatives on pages 13/14. Many strands of our work fit naturally into the aims of developing sustainable communities. The teachers’ CPD packages improve skills that directly impact young people in East London (page 17). The Arts Awards scheme builds mentoring skills (page 17). Networking opportunities for our artists and professional support contributes to the sustainable development of our artists. These are all areas we will continue to build.

Marcel Baettig


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Over 400 artists benefitted from affordable workspaces 171 employment contracts were taken up by our artists 90% of our artists are educated to at least degree level Tarragon Smith at work




Our Artists London’s creative industries generate £19 billion per year and employ 386,000 people. The city’s art and cultural scene is vitally important to the capital’s global competitiveness and businesses come to London because it attracts creative, dynamic professionals from a range of sectors. Bow Arts is a community of London’s emerging artists. We provide practical support and encouragement to our members by managing a large network of artists’ studios, a dynamic programme of innovative arts and cultural events, employment opportunities and networking resources. Our studios and livework spaces are located across sites in Bow, Poplar and Bermondsey, and we are pleased to be opening soon in Stratford (see page 8).

Our Artists

“Can I say how much the Bow Arts live/ work scheme has helped me. I have managed to produce a lot more work, meet new people and have had the chance to exhibit more than I ever have before. It really has been a great opportunity and I want to thank everyone at Bow Arts for giving me the chance to develop my work”

We manage London’s Artist Quarter - an online resource for a digital community of over 2,000 creative professionals. London’s Artist Quarter brings together artists across London with all the agencies that provide services for them, including colleges, studio providers, galleries, employment agencies and more.

Silke Dettmers hosting a visit to her studio

The Bow Arts artist community is both local and London-wide...

The ‘Artist Opportunities’ pages received over 4,000 page views a month


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The Artist Studio Finder website received over 15,000 page views a month



Our Artists We aim to deliver essential services in a no-nonsense way: affordable studios, places to live and work, jobs, a supportive network and decent relationships with local communities based on being good neighbours.

Artist Studio Finder is a free web resource that we sponsor where artists can quickly and easily find out about available studio spaces in London from legitimate providers.

Jodie Ruffle and Kiran Gobin at Open Studios

Our Artists The inaugural winner was Clare Mitten, pictured here receiving the award with Sarah Elson, Trustee of the Contemporary Art Society and Bow Arts.

Bow Arts Prize 2013 The 2013 Bow Arts Prize is a major new award for emerging artists in London. Awarded by a private donor, the annual prize is worth £10,000 to the lucky winner and is offered specifically to support the development of their career.

“I’m totally thrilled to have been selected for the Bow Arts Award. The generous support it offers over the coming year suddenly opens up the time and space to really test, explore and bring into being ideas and things that I’m really excited about. It is the kind of support that every artist dreams of .”

Clare Mitten

Professional Development Engine ChatChat, led by Bow Arts artist Elizabeth Murton, provides a forum for artists at any stage of their careers to meet, share ideas and get feedback within a supportive peer critique framework. As well as our studio based artists, we work with over 130 artist educators, who take our projects and realise them in schools and community settings. For those artists looking to improve their skills in this area and gain employment we run a professional development programme that include mentoring, volunteering and shadowing opportunities.

Our Open events are, just as the name suggests, an opportunity for our artists to throw open their studio doors and invite the public in to discover what goes on behind the scenes. It’s a great way to meet the artists, see their working environment and find out more about what it means to be an artist. Read more about this year’s event on page 21. There was a terrific turn-out at both events and we would like to say a big thank you to our artists and volunteers for making everyone so welcome.


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Partners in our Community Bow Arts works with a wide range of partners to deliver services that have strong social impacts. We place great value on these partnerships as they enable us to reach deeply into the communities in which we work. Here is a selection of just some of our partnership work this year, but we would like say a big thank you to all those organisations that are working with us to build better communities.

We have been working with Poplar HARCA now for many years, encouraging local artists to live and work in the neighbourhood, improving public areas and providing bespoke community arts programmes. We manage hard to let properties on their behalf via our Live/Work scheme, which currently provides housing for 90 artists. We successfully handed back 20 flats to Poplar HARCA on the Leopold Estate after our 37 artists tenants on the estate had either been relocated elsewhere on Bow Arts’ Live/Work or found other housing solutions. Elsewhere on our Live/Work scheme, at Fairlie Court the garden won first prize in the Capital Growth’s bee friendly Food Garden. Judges were impressed by the amount of wildlife the garden attracts and the sense of community engendered since its inception. The garden initiative was started by one of Bow Arts artists at Fairlie Court and is just one example of the type of projects that this scheme has encouraged.

We are proud to host a further round of the Land Securities Graduate Studio Award at our P1 Studios. The programme provides three recently graduated artists with a substantial studio space for a year, rent free. The recipients of the award for 2013 are Charlie Billingham, Cyrus Shroff and Mollie King.


Partners in our Community A partnership deal with the London Borough of Newham to provide affordable creative workspace opportunities for over 30 local artists and creative practitioners was agreed in September 2013. After a full refurbishment, Essex House on Stratford High Street (pictured above) will be divided into 28 studios and let at affordable rates to emerging artists. As per our business model, rental income from the studios will be re-invested in professional arts education services for schools, improving outcomes for children and young people in he borough.

The Bow Porcelain Project, featured on page 20, was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. The aim was to raise public awareness of this part of local heritage and this we did through contemporary art practice. An exhibition, a guided walk, work in a local primary school and a project film were all part of the delivery programme, as well as three artist residencies researching and responding to the Bow Porcelain factory.

We were delighted to receive a ÂŁ56,000 grant from the Greater London Authority for improvements to the alleyway and courtyard at Bow Road. This allowed us to carry out improvements to the alleyway making it safer and more inviting for local people and visitors to the gallery.


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Partners in our Community Schools

This year Bow Arts have teamed up with sponsorship partner Bank of America Merrill Lynch in developing a unique Public Art programme as part of the new Bow School capital development. The sponsorship has enabled Bow Arts to work with a core group of students from the school to act as the commissioners for a series of public artworks in and around their new school. Bank of America Merrill Lynch are sponsoring the revamp of the local underpass, working with artists Make: Good, to make for an inspiring and safe journey to and from school for the young people, and bringing some muchneeded colour and vibrancy to the area for the benefit of the wider community. The project has also brought a new partnership with Tate, linking into the Bank of America Merrill Lynch ‘Matisse: Cut Outs’ exhibition – with Bow Arts delivering the accompanying outreach through the Public Art programme.


Our education programme has been running for many years now and we feel privileged to work with so many primary and secondary schools, across nine London boroughs. This year we delivered over 1,000 artist-led workshops, to not only bring about some great outcomes for the children and young people, but to also support school improvement targets. We are also able to incorporate visits to our studios and gallery. Read more about our education programme on page 15.

This year we delivered over 1,000 artist-led workshops

Partners in our Community

In 2012 Bow Arts became one of the Arts Council’s National Portfolio Organisations with a view to delivering an agreed programme of support to emerging artists, extending arts participation in the borough of Newham and expanding our digital and network presence. We are doing this via various initiatives, including rolling out our Education packages in Newham and developing the Arts Awards programme. Encouraging access is being addressed by improving the gallery and also increasing our digital audience. Followers on social media continue to grow and we recently undertook a site upgrade on our London’s Artist Quarter website to make it easier and more appealing for users. We received confirmation that our application to the Arts Council for a small capital grant

Our unique partnership with East Thames is based around a simple model. They provide space for artist studios at their Taylor Place housing development in Bow. We then manage these spaces, bringing in rental income from artists, a proportion of which is used to create a programme of inspirational learning opportunities for children and young people and their communities in the local area. Last year 146 workshops were delivered, including projects in schools, holiday workshops for parents and children and a photography project for young people.

of £320k was successful. This has allowed us to carry out desperately needed repairs to the roof of one of our studio blocks and we are now implementing improvements to the Nunnery Gallery, café and office space at our main site on Bow Road. This investment will go a long way to building the future sustainability of Bow Arts and our ability to continue to deliver high quality arts and cultural services to artists and residents in the East End of London.

Our partnership with Crisis, the national charity for single homeless people, continues to thrive and Bow Arts now provides studio space for over 130 artists at the Crisis warehouse in Bermondsey. For the second year running the Bow Arts Open Show (see page 22) was held at the Bermondsey Project—a creative hub led by Crisis to provide opportunities for professional artists.


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Impact and Social Outcomes

The Bow Arts property portfolio is the driver for generating income for delivering our charitable activity. Our studios and live/work spaces house 400 artists. The rental income from them, together with input from the partners in our community, allows us to deliver £750,000 worth of activity that has powerful social impacts and outcomes.

These rental incomes from our artists are essential. Roughly two thirds pays for the studios’ running costs—all the while charging affordable rather than commercial rents. The remaining third is received in the form of charitable donations, which we are able to claim Gift Aid on via an HMRC approved scheme.


So our artists generate some £450,000 which is put directly towards our charitable activities. Together with the £300,000 contribution from our community partners we are able to do some amazing things. Read on to see how this money is spent. See page 25 for a breakdown of our income and expenditure.

Monega Primary School Street Art Project

Our Charitable Work? eliver Our Charitab D e le W oW d ork w o ? H


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67% of our artists live within 4km of their studios and 43% travel to their studios either on foot or by bicycle

Sustainability Bow Arts operates as a charitable social enterprise, which means that financial sustainability is at the heart of everything we do. Rental income from our studios is reinvested in education, regeneration and community development. This sustainable model means we are able to deliver our services without dependence on grant funding. The year saw some remarkable progress in our aim to become an even more sustainable organisation. A cross organisation working group, the Green Team, proved to be an effective vehicle for change across all departments and the resulting Action Plan provided a strong base from which to manage and target our efforts. We took part in Climate Week 2013, organised swap shops and cycle workshops. Beyond environmental issues, we are now beginning to look outward at what sustainable development means for our communities in terms of health and wellbeing. At the bicycle workshop

One of the many achievements of the Green Team was to set up our Green Blog. The aim was to chart our journey to becoming a more sustainable organisation. It talks openly about the hard choices faced by small organisations and the Green Team hope it will inspire others to have a go...

The education team cycled over 1,350 bike miles last year!



The carbon footprint of our studios at 183 Bow Road is now being monitored and we are pleased to report a reduction of 12% in CO2 emissions since our baseline year of 2010/11. We will be extending carbon emission monitoring to 181 Bow Road, including the gallery and café, and also to Stratford Studios. We would like to thank Julie’s Bicycle for all their support and encouragement. In an effort to green our Open Studios this year we focussed on waste management, being careful to source environmentally friendly supplies and providing recycling facilities. We also made the decision to engage local businesses and voluntary groups to provide food, drink and entertainment...

(above) East End Women’s Institute (top centre) Great beer from the Bermondsey brewers (top right) Great beer from the Bermondsey brewers (right) The Bubble Club’s DJ Factory — local DJ’s with and without learning difficulties/disabilities

94% of attendees at the Bow Road Open thought that the community benefits from Bow Arts’ activities

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Opportunities for participation increased by over 400%



Education and learning Our Education programme serves a wide range of schools by providing long term, high quality arts education experiences. We provide bespoke projects that are designed around the needs of each school we work with. This can range from tackling GCSE results, to improving literacy standards; from after school art clubs, to producing an original artwork for a school. Our projects are designed to raise attainment, boost creativity and build understanding as well as skills. Schools value our service. We know this because more than 75% of schools repeat booked with us last year. Some of our partner schools we have been working with for over 15 years.

Year of Growth

‘I have learnt that art is not one little thing, it’s a million things in life.’ Year 4 pupil, Harbinger Primary School


It has been a terrific year for our education programme, with a 32% increase in school clients. An extra team member, some excellent promotion of educational packages and the growing success of the Consortia model have driven this. We are also pleased to have increased our education audiences threefold. This means that more parents, residents and community members than ever before are able to see and experience the work produced through our projects.

Bow Arts helped two students from Bow School get A* in their Art and Design GCSE, the first time ever in the school’s history

Education and Learning We worked with 57 schools across 9 London boroughs 99.2% of our education projects resulted in an increase in pupils’ skills, knowledge and understanding


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31 young people gained Arts Award qualifications



Education and learning Arts Award The Arts Award is not only a great way of inspiring young people to engage with the arts, but also a medium for developing leaderships skills. Our accredited Arts Award Advisors deliver programmes that do just that, with participants learning how to run their own arts activities for peers, parents and the public—a truly sustainable way to bring art to communities.

Teachers’ CPD

70 teachers benefitted from our professional development sessions ‘I have come away with more in this hour session than a whole day of Teacher Training!’ Key Stage 2 Teacher, Marjorie McCLure School


We offer a programme of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for teachers led by an experienced team of artist educators. The sessions are tailored to fit around busy teaching schedules. They are designed not only to upskill teaching staff but to explore new ways of bringing creative activity to the classroom.

Education and Learning Community Programme We work with many of our community partners (see pages 7 to 10) to deliver creative projects in community settings. Bespoke programmes can be developed to reach out to children, young people and residents via holiday clubs, Arts Awards activities, public art consultations, in fact a whole range of creative interactions.

Drapers City Foyer 12 residents from Drapers City foyer worked with artists Bhajan Hunjan and Harriet Smith over 12 weeks focussing on mono printing techniques and culminating in a public exhibition. The foyer, run by East Thames, provides young people with support and development opportunities and we enjoyed returning for a second year to work with the residents there. The young people also gained Arts Award qualifications (see opposite). For some, this was the first qualification they had ever completed.

We work with many of our community partners to deliver creative projects in community settings.

Below Studio visit by Aloha College, Spain

I wasn’t very interested in art before but my support worker persuaded me to take part in the course. Now I am applying to volunteer in an art gallery and I want to carry on stencilling and painting in my spare time. Drapers City Foyer Resident


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Over 4,000 people visited the Nunnery gallery last year Madge Gill In October 2012 the gallery became home to three retrospective exhibitions revolving around the work of, once herself local to Bow, Madge Gill. Gill received little acclaim during her lifetime, but was to become one of the world’s most highly regarded Outsider Artists. This was the first exhibition series during which Gill’s work became the prime focus. Three artist residencies also took place. Artists Sarah Carne, Jack Hutchison and Paul Johnson exhibited their own work alongside the exhibition and took part in a series of talks.

Madge Gill working on calico. Courtesy of Tate Images




Nunnery Gallery Situated in the landmark Victorian nunnery building, our gallery, the Nunnery, has recently been taking a keen interest in the artistic heritage of Bow, with two of its major recent exhibitions, Madge Gill and Made In Bow, both encouraging contemporary artists to engage with local topics from bygone years.

Nunnery Gallery

“ Year 5 pupils from Park Primary School

Made in Bow In similar vein, three Bow Arts artists were invited to explore and respond to the porcelain collection of the 18th century Bow Porcelain factory which was just fifteen hundred metres from where the Nunnery stands today. Lizzie Cannon, Felicity Hammond and Mathew Weir took up residencies, researching the Bow porcelain story and developing responses which were exhibited alongside original pieces from the Newham Archive. An extensive events programme surrounding the Bow Porcelain collection was organised. Pupils from Park Primary School made their own contemporary Bow porcelain. The Museum of London hosted an expert led workshop exploring the archaeology of the Bow Porcelain Factory. And artist Felicity Hammond led a practical workshop which taught members of the public how to create their own cyanotypes.

“The gallery is a gem in the middle of a busy road.” “I love the Nunnery. Please don’t change the ambience. It is olde London.”

Work by Lizzie Cannon

As well as these two major exhibitions, the Nunnery Gallery was host to successful shows by Alexis Harding In Progress and Ben Washington Geometric Figuring (pictured here). Both received great reviews and were well received by gallery visitors.

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Over 2,000 people visited our Open events



Arts and Events As well as running the exhibition programme at the Nunnery Gallery, the arts and events team are involved in the organisation of many events outside the gallery setting. Open Studios The highlight of the Bow Arts events calendar, this year’s event was held in two stages. The first, the E3 Open, took place over a blisteringly hot June weekend at the Bow Road Studios. Visitors were entertained by live music, performance art, great food and local beers. Great efforts were made to make both events as sustainable as possible. You can read more about how we fared on pages 13/14. Our SE1 Open took place in September in Bermondsey, alongside our Open Show—Mise-en-scene. We were happy to support the Bermondsey Arts Festival taking place that weekend, with a whole host of local organisations offering a cultural smorgasbord.

Arts and Events

Cullinan Richards, the renowned artist duo, directed this year’s Open Show, Mise- en-scene. Cullinan Richards selected 19 Bow Artists to have works on display or performed over the course of the two- week exhibition programme.

Performance of Gwen Bajon’s work, ‘Like Foxes’ As well as our Open events, we are always keen to get involved in initiatives in the wider community. The Cockney Heritage Festival was one such initiative, organised by the Cockney Heritage Trust and Tower Hamlets Local History Library & Archives. It took place over the summer and we were delighted to join other organisations across the borough celebrating the Cockney heritage the East End. Pictured opposite, local residents meet a Cockney jellied eel—played by Eric and the Electrodes.


Partners in our community

Open Show

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59 volunteers placed this year



Out and About

The Carmelite Café has been providing refreshment for Nunnery Gallery visitors and local people now for over a year and also shows works that complement the main exhibition. ‘Strike’ by Alistair John Gordon was one such project that began with drawings made in response to conversations held between the artist and local residents at the café. Alastair was invited to explore the old Bryant and May Factory, later to be known as Bow Quarter, where he found antique boards and wooden artefacts in the cellar that he reclaimed and transformed into surfaces to paint on. Annie Besant’s Bonnet, shown here, was one of the works on display.

Volunteering We continue to run an extensive volunteering and internship programme and were pleased to liaise with Queen Mary University and King’s College and place two interns via the Santander UK Internship Programme. A big thank you to all our gallery volunteers, without whom we wouldn’t be open to the public for six days a week.


Out and About Public Art Commissions We have a strong track record of successful public art work and work with our community, public sector and commercial partners to provide complete solutions — from initial creative concepts to realisation and installation. Gary Drostle’s ‘Entwined Histories’ was facilitated by us on behalf of Poplar HARCA as part of their programme of improvements to the Leopold Estate. Workshop sessions were arranged with local residents and young people at St Paul’s Way Trust School to develop ideas. Patterns were explored which referenced the cultural diversity of the people living in the area, including early immigrant communities of English, Irish, French Huguenot, Ashkenazi Jews, Lascars, Bangladeshi, Chinese, African and eastern European. The different patterns formed the strands of the rope and were thus incorporated into the final design work – ‘Entwined Histories’.

Winner of the 2013 Mosaic Arts International Best in Show Award Winner

“ ‘Entwined Histories’ is a magnificent tribute to all of the diverse communities that have populated this area in the past, but also represents great landmark for residents of today and the future.” Andrew Mahoney, Chair of the Places Board and Resident Member of the Poplar HARCA board


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Income (£,000’s) 56


169 30

Licence fees and rents Donations


Gift Aid Grants and other Income

Education income 829


Charitable Expenditure (£,000’s) 119 63


Provision of creative workspaces

Education projects Gallery programmes and events 840



Connect with us Our Trustees Martyn Coles Sarah Elson Michele Faull Elizabeth Hall Jeremy Kilburn Rajen Madan John Middleton Nick Smales Jonathan Winskill

(Chair) (Treasurer)

(Vice Chair)

Our Staff Marcel Baettig Angela Law Michael Owens Dawn Bigsby Aline Rice Rakib Islam / Shohag Ahmed

Chief Executive Business Manager Commercial Director Evaluations Officer Finance Administrator Finance Administrators (maternity cover)

Property Team Michael Cubey Tilly Hogrebe Aoife Flynn Sally Dracott

Assistant Director and Head of Property Senior Property Assistant Property Assistant Property Assistant

Education Team Rob Smith Lydia Ashman Kate Westbrook Rob Harris

Head of Education and Learning Education and Learning Officer Education and Learning Officer Education Assistant

Gallery and Events Team Rosamond Murdoch Gallery Director Karen Le Roy Harris Gallery Manager (maternity cover)

http:// charities/bowarts

With thanks to our trustees, staff, community partners, volunteers and, of course, our artists for all their support and encouragement. Bow Arts Trust Ltd is a company registered in England and Wales with company number 03031923 and also a registered charity number 1046958

Bow Arts 183 Bow Road London E3 2SJ

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t: 020 8980 7774

Bow Arts Annual Report 2012/13  

Bow Arts Annual Report 2012-13

Bow Arts Annual Report 2012/13  

Bow Arts Annual Report 2012-13