Paying Artists

The Paying Artists campaign is a project combining the full range of DHA expertise – from policy and research to strategy, campaigns/communications, design and video/website co-production.

Commissioned by a-n, a membership organisation representing 18,000 artists we were asked to design a campaign which promoted the need to pay artists who exhibit in publicly-funded spaces.

Our first step was to build a robust evidence based, delivering research which included a comprehensive survey setting out the experiences of 1,000 artists and giving us critical statistical evidence on which to base the campaign (see separate case study).

Using the research and our analysis of the policy environment we developed a narrative which became the clear script for the campaign, broadening the context to show how not paying artists is fuelling inequality, represents poor value for tax payers investment and could ultimately undermine the future of visuals arts in the UK.

We developed the narrative into a short briefing document, Securing the Future of Visual Arts in the UK, which was issued with covering letters to leading influencers and stakeholders around the UK.

We developed a range of collateral to support the campaign, designing and building a high impact campaign website in-house and producing a 60 second video using hand-drawn animation and a concept developed by DHA and realised by our filmmaking partners, Chocolate Films.

The campaign achieved a string of major successes within just weeks of launch, with public pledges of support from Arts Council England, meetings secured with leading politicians, support from Turner Prize winner Jeremy Deller and more than 10,000 downloads of the campaign video.

The quality and clarity of the campaign itself, and the research which underpinned it, have also won repeated praise from stakeholders – funders and artists alike.

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