Photograph of the exterior of The Farmer's Arms with bunting.

Autumn announcements:
new team members and fundraising ventures

The Farmer's Arms, Grizedale - photograph courtesy of Corridor8.

It’s been an eventful three years for Corridor8 (and, admittedly, everybody else). In 2020 we launched our Supported Content commissioning model as an experiment in finding ways to ensure fair payment for our writers and ourselves. We didn’t know if it would work, but it did, surprisingly well, and for that we can thank the organisations, curators and artists across the North who’ve chosen to invest financially and share our vision, along with the writers and editors who’ve done the work.

With the Northerly wind at our backs we’re launching a new paid-for Substack newsletter covering the more prickly issues associated with contemporary art in the North, as a platform committed to commissioning new voices on the ground.

Alongside managing this side of the platform, we’ve been lucky enough to receive grants and support from Arts Council England and Henry Moore Foundation, Leeds Art Fund and Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, which have allowed us to produce special publications and events in collaboration with creative practitioners across the North of England. Now, with the success of the Supported Content model, we’re in a position to pause applications for project funding and undertake some further experiments, responding to the cultural, social and political context that we find ourselves in, with a commitment to practically supporting the artists and writers of the North and holding fast to the ethics and vision that have kept Corridor, and then Corridor8, alive since the 1970s.

We enter the last quarter of 2023 with three new team members: Natalie Hughes and Laura Harris as our new Merseyside & Cheshire Regional Editors, and Benjamin Barra as our new Yorkshire Regional Editor. Following our team away weekend in June we have a renewed commitment to addressing some of the ways we feel that we’ve been falling short. While it has been a genuine delight and honour to cover and respond to contemporary artistic activity from Barrow-in-Furness to Hull (and up to Newcastle, and down to Liverpool etc etc) we haven’t always been able to respond in a timely manner to political and social developments across our regions, or to support writers in platforming the arguments and opinions that are vital to a healthy culture that can develop and proliferate in new directions.

And so, with the Northerly wind at our backs we are committing once again to regular monthly newsletters for our existing subscribers, that will conveniently round up the reviews and features published each month, and a new paid-for Substack newsletter that will feature exclusive writing from our Regional Editors and invited guest contributors, covering some of the more prickly issues associated with contemporary art in the North, as well as the hyper-local knowledges that we alone have access to, as a platform committed to commissioning new voices ‘on the ground’. This is alongside the advertising that we offer at reasonable rates for the artist-led to the NPO, and the profits from all of these fundraising initiatives will go towards more independent and topical commissioning as well as bolstering the foundations of the organisation, making us less reliant on the evening and weekend working of our two Executive Directors and thus properly resilient, in the literal non-buzzword sense.

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Published 24.09.2023 by Lauren Velvick in Features

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