Past Events


The Art of Dwelling
A one-day conference exploring long-term approaches to public art & place

Tuesday, April 21, 2015
10:00 am – 4:30 pm
321 Bradford Street
B5 6ET Birmingham
United Kingdom

In recent years the landscape of public art commissioning in the UK has undergone profound change. Linked to the regeneration of post-industrial places during the last decade, funding for public art has diminished as the effects of the recession and austerity politics have taken hold. Meanwhile, in response to what many perceive as the widespread instrumentalisation of art within urban policy, artists and curators have begun to develop new methods of producing and articulating the value of public art, which are predicated on collaboration, critical reflection, intervention and the development of long-term relationships with a place.

Building on the themes and questions raised by Subplots to a City – a new publication which details the last 10 years of Preston-based public art project In Certain Places – The Art of Dwelling examined the role of public art within the post-regeneration age. Bringing together artists, curators and commissioners from across the UK, this one-day conference focused on the significance of working in a place for a sustained period of time. Taking the notion of ‘dwelling’ as a starting point for discussions, the event examined the motivations and methods of long-term, situated approaches to public art, and the challenges, responsibilities and opportunities these entail.

The conference was developed by In Certain Places in partnership with ixia public art think tank, and included presentations by Anna Hart (AIR) Claudia Zeiske (Deveron Arts), Elaine Speight and Charles Quick (In Certain Places); workshops led by Becky Beinart (Primary), Kerry Morrison (In Situ), Anna Francis (Air Space Gallery), Jayne Murray (Place Prospectors) and opportunities for group discussion.

For more information, please e-mail Elaine Speight:


Public Art and Housing Event Summary

An event summary has been written by Suzanne Heath. Suzanne is a freelance project manager who specialises in developing and delivering high quality, innovative public art projects. To download the summary please click ixia Public Art and Housing Event Summary June 2014.


Public Art and Housing

Maple House, 150 Corporation Street, Birmingham, B4 6TB
Wednesday 7th May 2014
9.00am to 4.00pm

The government’s support for the provision of private and social housing combined with its inclusion of public art, cultural well-being and good design within national planning policies and guidance is triggering opportunities and funding for artists to work with housing developers, housing associations, local councils, communities, designers and others. This event explored the role of public art within the context of housing policies and developments.

Speakers include:

The event was for anyone with an interest or involvement in public art and housing.


Public Art, Cultural Well-Being and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) events 2013

During November and December 2013, ixia organised a second series of three free briefing events on the relationship between the provision of public art and the inclusion of cultural well-being within the NPPF.

The key speakers were: Ian Dove QC, planning barrister from No5 Chambers; Charles Landry, international authority on the use of imagination and creativity in urban change; and Michael Chang, Planning Policy Officer for the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA).

Ian provided an update on the development and implementation of the NPPF at a national and local level, including the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL), and relating to cultural well-being and public art. Charles examined what cultural well-being means and looks like, how it can be measured and its relationship with the development of places. Michael discussed the TCPA’s involvement with the Culture and Sport Planning Toolkit, including its Improving Culture, Arts and Sporting Opportunities through Planning. A Good Practice Guide.

The briefing events were for arts officers, public art officers, planners, artists, curators, developers and arts funders. The events were supported by Eversheds LLP, SGH Martineau LLP and No5 Chambers. Click here for more information.

Venue: Eversheds LLP, 1 Wood Street, London, EC2V 7WS
Date: Monday 4th November 2013
Time: 12pm – 3.15pm
Venue: Beam, The Orangery, Back Lane, Wakefield, WF1 2TG
Date: Monday 25th November 2013
Time: 12pm – 3.15pm
Venue: SGH Martineau LLP, No 1 Colmore Square, Birmingham, B4 6AA
Date: Monday 9th December 2013
Time: 12pm – 3.15pm

Celf ac Adfywio Cyhoeddus / Public Art and Regeneration 2013

During November 2013, The Arts Council of Wales, the Centre for Regeneration Excellence Wales (CREW) and ixia held two events which focused on the relationship between public art projects and regeneration schemes. The events formed part of the implementation of the Arts Council’s public art development programme. They related to the Arts Council’s new regeneration investment fund and the Welsh Government’s new regeneration framework, Vibrant and Viable Places.

Celf ac Adfywio Cyhoeddus
Mae Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru, Canolfan Rhagoriaeth Adfywio Cymru (CREW) a ixia melin drafod celf cyhoeddus, wedi trefnu dau ddigwyddiad sy’n canolbwyntio ar y berthynas rhwng prosiectau celf gyhoeddus a chynlluniau adfywio. Mae’r digwyddiadau hyn yn rhan o weithredu rhaglen datblygu celf cyhoeddus y Cyngor Celfyddydau. Maent yn ymwneud a gronfa buddsoddi adfywio newydd Cyngor Celfyddydau a fydd yn cael ei lansio yn ystod 2013 a Lleoedd Llewyrchus Llawn Addewid, fframwaith adfywio newydd Llywodraeth Cymru.

Celf ac Adfywio Cyhoeddus
Celf Ganolog, y Barri
Dydd Mercher 13 Tachwedd, 2013
9:30yb hyd at 4.00yh

Cliciwch yma am ragor o wybodaeth.

Celf ac Adfywio Cyhoeddus
Prif Neuadd (Hall Reichel), Prifysgol Bangor
Dydd Llun 18 Tachwedd, 2013
9:30yb hyd at 4.00yh

Cliciwch yma am ragor o wybodaeth.


Public Art and Regeneration
Art Central, Barry
Wednesday 13th November 2013
9.30am to 4.00pm

Click here for further information.

Public Art and Regeneration
Main Hall (Reichel Hall), Bangor University
Monday 18th November 2013
9.30am to 4.00pm

Click here for further information.


ixia’s Public Art, Cultural Well-Being and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) events

During autumn 2012, ixia organised three free briefing events on public art, cultural well-being and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). The speakers were the planning barrister, Ian Dove QC of No5 Chambers, and the cultural commentator, John Holden.

The events addressed two issues:

  1. the relationship between cultural well-being and public art;
  2. the implications of the inclusion of cultural well-being within the NPPF on the provision of public art via the planning system.

Click here for more information and to download the papers which were the basis of Ian’s and John’s presentations.


Public Art and Self-Organisation, London and Leeds

ixia organised two Public Art and Self-Organisation events in London and Leeds.

Public Art and Self-Organisation, London
Enclave (Resolution Way, London, SE8 4N)
Wednesday 22nd August 2012: 9.30am to 4.30pm

Click here for more information.

Public Art and Self-Organisation, Leeds
4th floor, 4 The Embankment, Sovereign Street, Leeds. LS1 4BA.
Monday 1st October 2012: 9.30am to 4.30pm

Click here for further information.


The Art of Making Things Public and Getting Things Done

The Arts Council of Wales organised the following events in partnership with ixia. The events were part of the implementation of the Arts Council’s public art development programme.

Public Art and Self-Organisation
Swansea Metropolitan University
Monday 25th June 2012: 9.30am to 4.30pm

Click here for further information about Public Art and Self-Organisation.

Public Art and Regeneration
Glyndŵr University, Wrexham
Wednesday 4th July 2012: 9.30am to 4.30pm

Click here for further information about Public Art and Regeneration.


Y Gelfyddyd o Wneud Pethau’n Gyhoeddus a Chyflawni Pethau

Mae Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru wedi trefnu’r digwyddiadau canlynol mewn partneriaeth ag ixia, melin drafod celf gyhoeddus. Mae’r digwyddiadau yn rhan o weithrediad rhaglen datblygu celf gyhoeddus y Cyngor Celfyddydau.

Celf Gyhoeddus a Hunan-drefnu
Prifysgol Fetropolitanaidd Abertawe
Dydd Llun 25 Mehefin 2012: 9.30yb hyd 4.30yp

Cliciwch yma i gael rhagor o wybodaeth am Celf Gyhoeddus a Hunan-drefnu ac i archebu lle.

Celf Gyhoeddus ac Adfywiad
Prifysgol Glyndŵr, Wrecsam
Dydd Mercher 4 Gorffennaf 2012: 9.30yb hyd 4.30yp

Cliciwch yma i gael rhagor o wybodaeth am Celf Gyhoeddus ac Adfywiad ac i archebu lle.


what is the future for art in the public realm?

Armada House, Telephone Avenue, Bristol, BS1 4BQ
9.30am – 5pm Friday 10th June 2011

In recent years the public realm has become filled with public art, outdoor arts and outreach projects. This conference considered the future of art in the public realm at a time of increased popularity but decreasing public and private sector support and funding.

The conference brought together organisations and individuals with an interest or involvement in public art, outdoor arts and outreach projects. What can we learn from each other? Are there potential opportunities for new collaborations?

The conference was free. Please click here to download the Conference Programme.


9.30am to 10am Registration and refreshments

10am to 10.10am Welcome and introduction: Jonathan Banks (Chief Executive, ixia)

10.10am to 1.05pm Key speakers including discussions and a refreshment break

The key speakers will examine the relationship between progressive public art, outdoor arts and outreach projects – including the impact of political, social, economic and environmental contexts; artistic and commissioning strategies; partnership working; and public engagement.

– Chaired by Dr Paul O’Neill (Curator, artist, writer)

– Andrea Schlieker (Curator, Folkestone Triennial)

– Mark Ball (Artistic Director, London International Festival of Theatre (LIFT))

– Sally Tallant (Head of Programmes, Serpentine Gallery)

– Brigitte van der Sande (Curator, War Zone Amsterdam)

– Dr Louise Owen (Lecturer in Theatre and Performance, Birkbeck, University of London)

Dr Louise Owen produced a response document to the conference. Click here to download it.

1.05pm to 1.25pm Questions

1.25pm to 2.10pm Lunch

2.10pm to 2.50pm Breakout Session 1 – seminars

Breakout Session Facilitators will lead discussions and provide guidance on the impact of the coalition government’s policies and the economic downturn on the key sources of support and funding for art in the public realm. These are the policy domains of regeneration and planning, health, education, culture, tourism and evaluation. All the Breakout Sessions will be recorded for ixia’s website.

Regeneration and Planning: Alex Murdin (Creative Places Development Manager, Dorset Design and Heritage Forum) and Gillian Fearnyough (Director, The Architecture Centre Bristol) will focus on the relationship between art in the public realm and neighbourhood planning, the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and other changes to the delivery of regeneration initiatives and the structure of the planning system.

Health: Jane Willis (Director, Willis Newson) and Alexandra Coulter (Director, Arts & Health South West) will consider the future of art in the public realm within the context of changes to the ways that health initiatives will be managed and delivered. These include changes to the construction of health buildings, the introduction of Health and Wellbeing Boards within local authorities, and the commissioning of health services by GPs.

Education: Kim Tilbrook (Arts Consultant, Producer and Educator) and Matt Little (Director, Real Ideas Organisation (RIO)) will discuss art in the public realm within the context of changes to the provision, management and funding of schools and initiatives for young people.

Culture: Dr Tom Fleming (Director, Creative Consultancy) will focus on the relationship between art in the public realm and developments in cultural policy and cultural planning, including the work of Arts Council England and local authorities. Tim Corum (Deputy Head, Bristol Museums Galleries and Archives) will discuss how museums are engaging with art in the public realm as a means of rethinking their connections with places and their collections. His examples will include, Banksy versus Bristol Museum and New Expressions 2.

Tourism: Rosa Corbishley (Communications and Development Manager, Salisbury International Arts Festival and Board Member, Visit Wiltshire) and Tom Freshwater (Contemporary Art Curator, National Trust) will consider the role of art in the public realm in attracting people to, and engaging them with, places.

Evaluation: Rod Varley (Associate Consultant, ixia) and Sophie Hope (Practitioner and Researcher, Birkbeck, University of London) will discuss why, how and when to evaluate art in the public realm.

2.50pm to 3.10pm Refreshments

3.10pm to 3.50pm Breakout Session 2 – seminars

The breakout sessions above will be repeated

3.50pm to 4.00pm Close of conference

4.00pm to 4.15pm An introduction to ‘Art and the public realm Bristol’ – Bristol City Council’s new website for the city’s public art programme

4.15pm to 5pm Networking

The conference is now SOLD OUT.

The programme was correct at the time of publication.



The Exchange, Sturminster Newton
Monday 28th February 2011, 10am-4pm

How can the arts be used to give individuals and communities around us better chances in life and better health? Healthy Communities, Sustainable Places was a one-day conference held at the Exchange in Sturminster Newton in Dorset on the 28th February 2011. It looked at how the strategies proposed in the 2010 Marmot Review are being applied by artists and arts organisations across the country, exploring some inspirational and effective examples.

Delegates  heard presentations from experienced practitioners with a range of creative approaches to reducing social isolation, building on community capital, encouraging active travel and improving the food environment.

Speakers included: Adam Sutherland, Director of Grizedale Arts; Simon Morrissey of Foreground; Anna Best from Road for the Future; Anna Ledgard of Eastfeast; Claire Wyatt from Kilter Theatre; and Katy Hallett, Director of Sustrans.

Tickets cost £30 with concessionary rates available (and for all those resident in Dorset). Visit for more information. (email:; telephone: 01305 269081.) For further information, use the links below:



A seminar by Jane Field (Beam)
Wednesday 26 January 2011, 2-5 p.m
Burnley Mechanics, Manchester Road, Burnley BB11 1BH

Jane Field exploed how public art can be used in regeneration, with particular focus on two key programmes delivered by Beam: Interconnections and People Changing Places.  Both programmes bring together the community, young people and the local authority with artists and other creative professionals to stimulate thinking, gain new skills and learning around regeneration and involve them in place-making.

Jane’s talk was followed by local case studies of public art projects across Pennine Lancashire and discussion.

This seminar was of particular relevance to those working in regeneration, planning, housing market renewal, development control, community and arts services.

Jane Field is Director of Programmes and Services at Beam. Beam is a company dedicated to involving people in the imaginative understanding and improvement of the public realm – our urban and rural streets, buildings, parks, neighbourhoods and public spaces. Jane has 25 years experience in the education sector, and is responsible for the design, development and delivery of a wide range of learning programmes and projects.

This seminar was part of a series organised by the Creativity Works for Regeneration Group and was funded by Lancashire County Council through their Public Art Allocation.



nalgao 2010 Conference: Arts in The Big Society?

6th–7th December 2010
The Hove Centre (Hove Town Hall), Norton Rd, Brighton & Hove BN3 4AH

nalgao – the National Association of Local Government Arts Officers – held its annual national conference in Brighton & Hove at The Hove Centre (the old Hove Town Hall) in 2010. The event ran from 6th – 7th December. Conference partners were Brighton & Hove City Council (hosts), and the conference was sponsored by Festivals and Events International and Arts Professional.

The Conference explored the challenges, threats and the opportunities for local authority arts services and for those working in arts development in the current economic and political climate. In particular it considered:

• Working within the new landscape and making it work for you;
• Fighting for your corner; and
• Going it alone.

Local authority support for the arts has been a cornerstone of the nation’s creative life, one of the largest and most dynamic sectors in the UK. The arts support crosscutting agendas and provide access and engagement to arts for diverse communities and a lively and dynamic vehicle for regeneration and awareness. Local authorities have also been a healthy breeding ground for good arts management practice, and many people in key national positions started as local authority arts officers. But the landscape has shifted and as we face the new world following the Comprehensive Spending Settlement, we will have many challenges to face.

Local authority arts services fulfill a vital role in contributing to the wide spectrum of arts practice, delivering both local and central government core objectives, but as public service budgets are reduced and public service priorities shift, how can we ensure all that we have achieved is safeguarded? In this difficult economic climate, cultural services and the arts and creative industries remain one of the main areas of economic growth. But have we made the case well enough and is the evidence strong enough? If the future is about ‘Big Society’ and devolution and that means giving people local power, then the arts have much to contribute. How can we ensure we do? And as new ways of working become ever more important – the creative sector already has much to offer in innovative thinking and practice – are there lessons that can help your service? The conference offered an opportunity to explore these areas, to learn about good practice, and time to discuss how to respond to the new policy and funding realities.

The conference offered a mix of keynote presentations, breakouts and open forum discussion groups aimed at those working in local authority arts services as well as those in the cultural and creative sectors.

To download the conference programme,  please click here.



A seminar by Nayan Kulkarni
Wednesday 15 December 2010, 2-5 pm
Burnley Mechanics, Manchester Road, Burnley BB11 1BH


Image: Mirrie Dancers, Site 10, Shetland (Nayan Kulkarni)

Drawing from his ongoing studio based research and recent public projects, Nayan Kulkarni examined the processes through which artworks are conceived and delivered in very different commissioning contexts. In particular he focused on issues of integration and autonomy, examining the formal and informal role of an artist in a project delivery team.

Nayan’s talk was followed by local case studies of public art projects across Pennine Lancashire and discussion.

This seminar was free and open to anyone, but of particular relevance to those working in regeneration, planning, housing market renewal, development control, community and arts services.

Nayan Kulkarni’s practice engages with ideas of site specificity, time, technology and perception. These themes are manifested in work that is generated from specific concepts, processes or places through diverse media such as light, video, installation, sculpture and photography. Underpinning his practice is an ongoing theoretical and technological research base in digital media and computer controlled artificial light. See


This seminar was funded by Lancashire County Council through their Public Art Allocation.


The art of influencing change: How can art impact on change?

engage/enquire International Conference
3rd-5th November 2010
Broadway, Nottingham Media Centre
Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery
Nottingham Contemporary
and venues across Nottingham during the British Art Show 7

In 2010 engage and enquire collaborated on a joint conference, The Art of Influencing Change.

Rapid developments in the 21st century are creating opportunities and challenges for arts and education professionals. We are confronted by environmental issues, developing technology, globalisation and changes to political agendas and policies.

This year’s engage/enquire International Conference considered how those working in the visual arts could become best equipped to influence change now and in the future.

Questions addressed included:

  • How do artists and arts organisations respond to global and national changes? What are the opportunities and responsibilities for arts educators resulting from these changes?
  • Can the sector influence political agendas and environmental issues, and does it have a responsibility to influence what is going on in the wider world?
  • How might the arts, audiences and resources reshape in response to environmental and technological as well as financial changes, and how can the arts be resilient and sustainable?

To answer these questions, the conference sought to:

  • Look at key challenges facing the arts and education world and consider how artists, educators and policymakers are taking socio-political responsibility and influencing change;
  • Examine the role of technology and digital collaboration in reaching new audiences;
  • Hear from the ‘champions of change’, focusing on future forecasts, pioneering models and revolutionary social projects;
  • Highlight tools and strategies for arts educators to influence change now and into the future.

As well as a lively programme of presentations and debates, breakout sessions sought to provide a more intimate platform for discussion.

Speakers and contributors included:

Sam Bower, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the California-based;
Deborah Dean, Visual Arts and Exhibitions Manager, Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery;
Roanne Dods, co-founder, Mission Models Money;
Lisa Edgar, Head of Education at ffotogallery (Cardiff);
Patrick Fox, Programme Manager at FACT (Foundation of Creative Arts and Technology);
Johnny Gailey, Children and Young People’s Programme Manager, Fruitmarket Gallery (Edinburgh) and Director of Air Iomlaid;
Paula Marie Hildebrandt
, curator of Überlebenskunst;
Jonnet Middleton
, Artist;
Hannah Rudman
, Director of Envirodigital;
Laura Sillars
, Programmes Director, FACT;
Jane Trowell
, Educator, PLATFORM;
….and more to be confirmed. Click here for further details.

The engage/enquire International Conference aimed to:

  • Stimulate debate about gallery education and issues affecting practice
  • Inform delegates about current cultural and educational policies annd developments in the visual arts
  • Raise the profile of gallery education
  • Provide networking opportunities for delegates

Click here to download the e-flyer.

Click here for more information about booking, prices, etc or click here to download a booking form.


A place for creativity?
Inspiring urban change: Innovative approaches to place design & development

3rd annual Art and Urban Design Conference
Thursday 15th July 2010
One-day national conference at Milton Keynes Gallery, Midsummer’s Boulevard, Milton Keynes

This conference was organised by RUDI in partnership with Milton Keynes Gallery & David Lock Associates in order to bring together all those involved in placemaking and art and design that have an interest in creating unique, interesting and stimulating places.

In times of economic restraint it is particularly important that we encourage creativity in placemaking and develop inspiring and interesting urban environments.

In recent years, RUDI has encouraged discussion about the role artists and the creative community can play in the design, development and delivery of vibrant, culturally relevant and inclusive communities.


* Strategies for urban change
* Artists & the arts on the placemaking agenda
* Contemporary arts in city development
* Reclaiming abandoned & neglected urban areas

Designated as a ‘new town’ in 1967, the rapidly growing city of Milton Keynes now faces new challenges and will provide a focus and stimulus for debate and discussion on the day.

Debate will focus on the role of artists and the creative community in making places, the effects of the recession on creativity in placemaking, collaborative working practices and ways of engaging local communities in the creation of inspiring and interesting places.

Speakers include:

* Will Cousins, Architect, Urban Designer & Director, David Lock Associates
* Richard Russell, Director, Strategic Partnerships, Arts Council England
* Michael Stanley, Director, Modern Art Oxford
* Michael Pinsky, Artist
* Liza Fior, Director, MUF Architects & Artists

and many more… Click here.


What’s art got to do with it? Creativity in housing and public realm development

Tuesday 15th June 2010, 9.30am-3.15pm
Location: ACE Centre, Cross Street, Nelson, Lancashire, BB9 7NN

What does contemporary art have to do with sustainable, well-designed housing and the public realm? A series of visionary but practical case studies contrasting Housing Market Renewal Arts Programmes from across the UK.

Each region has developed a different approach to embedding creative practice in the mainstream regeneration of some of the country’s most challenging and most characterful neighbourhoods.

The day sought to explore and exchange these accrued areas of expertise in formal presentations followed by a restricted number of Master Classes where delegates and speakers could discuss, in depth, how to apply and carry forward these insights.

The conference was aimed at those who design, plan, develop or build houses, as well as artists and commissioners of artists.

Richard Hollinshead – Director, Grit & Pearl – consultants to Barrow Regeneration and Britain’s Energy Coast West Cumbria
Paul Kelly – Housing Market Renewal Public Realm Project Manager, Liverpool Biennial
Clare McManus – Director, Eventus – the arts agency for Sheffield’s Creative Futures Pathfinder
Anthony Preston – North West Senior Manager, Regional Planning, Arts Council England
Max Steinberg – Chief Executive, Regenerate Pennine Lancashire
Fiona Sullivan – Director, Right Angle Management Ltd.
Claire Timon – Creative Community Engagement Manager, Regenerate Pennine Lancashire


Hosted By Regenerate Pennine Lancashire


ixia was pleased to support Locating the Producers:

LOCATING THE PRODUCERS – A Time and Place for Public Art

Friday 11th June, 6-8pm
Arnolfini, Bristol
Tickets: £6.00/£4.50 concs

Organised by award-winning public art commissioning programme Situations, at the University of the West of England, in partnership with Bristol City Council, LOCATING THE PRODUCERS – A Time and Place for Public Artoffered the opportunity to hear from some of Europe’s most pioneering curators, artists and art producers working in the public realm.

Together, this distinguished group of public art specialists have participated in Locating the Producers, a three-year European research project led by GWR Research Fellow, Dr. Paul O’Neill at Situations in collaboration with ProjectBase and the University of Falmouth incorporating Dartington College of Art. This discussion sees the culmination of intense research into five exemplary public art projects: The Blue House (Het Blauwe Huis), IJburg, The Netherlands (2004-2009); Beyond, Leidsche Rijn, The Netherlands (1999-2009); Trekroner Art Plan, Roskilde, Denmark (2001-on-going); Grizedale Arts, Cumbria, UK (on-going since 1999) and The Edgware Road Project, London, UK (2009-2011).

The participants of these initiatives are being together for the final time in Bristol to debate how their longer-term, cumulative approaches to producing art projects outside museums and galleries have emerged in stark contrast to the short-term festival or parachuting of artists into specific places. The discussion will explore how the individual curatorial models and strategies involved in each project have been developed for their specific socio-political contexts, taking account of the multiple challenges and conflictual attitudes to working in this way for commissioners, curators, artists and their publics.

For everyone interested in the future of public art, this event offers the opportunity to get under the skin of a range of longer-term projects and the chance to quiz the producers on the impact of their projects on specific places over time.

Jonathan Banks – Chief Executive, ixia, public art think tank
Kerstin Bergendal – Artist-Commissioner, Trekroner Art Plan, Denmark
Tom van Gestel – Commissioner, Beyond and SKOR – Foundation for Art & Public Space, Amsterdam
Janna Graham – Curator of Edgware Road, London and member of art collaboration, Ultra-red
Jeanne van Heeswijk – Artist-curator, The Blue House, IJburg
Alistair Hudson – Co-Director, Grizedale Arts, Cumbria
Aldo Rinaldi – Senior Public Art Officer, Bristol City Council
Dr. Mick Wilson – Artist, Writer, Dean of the Graduate School of Art & Design (GradCam), Dublin

Dr. Paul O’Neill – GWR Research Fellow, Situations, University of the West of England, Bristol

Locating the Producers is supported by Projectbase, University College Falmouth incorporating Dartington College of Arts and funded by Great Western Research (GWR).


Public Art Professional Development Seminars

For 2009 and 2010, ixia worked with Situations, Places Matter! and Arts Council England to develop and deliver two series of Seminars in order to disseminate its research and encourage networking and debate. The Seminars were devised for artists, curators, public art consultants and representatives of public and private sector organisations that promote and commission public art. In addition to hearing from speakers, attendees were encouraged to engage actively in discussions and to reflect upon their own work in relation to the issues discussed. For more information see below:

“Places Matter!”

Places Matter! and Arts Council England partnered with ixia to deliver a series of Seminars throughout the north-west of England. The Seminars enabled attendees to reflect upon contemporary public art practice and to develop their understanding of specific contexts and issues which support and influence the delivery of public art.

Public Art Needs Outsiders
Project Focus: Grizedale Arts, Cumbria, UK
Seminar Venue: Lawson Park Farm, Coniston, Cumbria
Date: Wednesday 7th October 2009, 11am – 5pm

The Seminar above was also part of “What Public Art Needs Now!” and was developed with Situations (see below).

Public Art Evaluation Toolkit
Seminar Location: Number One Hotel, South Beach, Blackpool, Lancashire
Date: Thursday 12th November 2009, 10am – 4pm

Public Art and Health
Seminar Location: milkandsugar, Liverpool
Date: Tuesday 8th December 2009, 10am – 4pm

Public Art and Building Schools for the Future (BSF)
Seminar Location: Urbis, Manchester
Date: Wednesday 27th January 2010, 10am – 4pm

Public Art and the Planning System
Seminar Location: Preston Guildhall, Preston, Lancashire
Date: Wednesday 24th February 2010, 10am – 4pm


“What Public Art Needs Now!”

ixia and Situations developed a series of groundbreaking Seminars framed by a provocative response to the statement: “What Public Art Needs Now!”

The Seminars examined different aspects of emergent and alternative models of contemporary public art commissioning by focusing on the role of the curator/commissioner within an exemplary international public art project. Organised through informal illustrated presentations, group discussions and critical responses, the three Seminars provided attendees with the opportunity to hear from, and question, the commissioners behind the projects, the artists and other participants involved, and respondents from the contemporary public art sector.

Public Art Needs Outsiders
Project Focus: Grizedale Arts, Cumbria, UK
Seminar Venue: Lawson Park Farm, Coniston, Cumbria
Date: Wednesday 7th October 2009, 11am – 5pm

Public Art Needs Continuity
Project Focus: Beyond, Leidsche Rijn, Netherlands
Seminar Venue: Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Date: Tuesday 13th October 2009, 11am – 5pm

Public Art Needs Time Limits
Project Focus: One Day Sculpture, New Zealand
Seminar Venue: Spike Island, Bristol
Date: Thursday 3rd December 2009, 10.30am – 4.30pm


Envisioning Community: Space, Place and Translating the Past in 19th and 20th Century Britain

University of Warwick
Saturday 27th February 2010

Envisioning Community was a one-day multidisciplinary conference exploring how approaches to the study of community can better inform our understanding of the historical past. It featured renowned keynote speakers in the fields of historical and human geography, as well as in the field of visual media and its interpretation. The conference was open to delegates from all disciplines, engaging with the processes of space and place in community in nineteenth and twentieth century Britain.

Understanding location as a process has led to a reassessment of historical study. This has been informed by the new challenges of the global in which interrogation of the universal has led to questions regarding the local.  Methodologically, this has given rise to new developments. Scholars wishing to reconstruct and ‘pull apart’ the narratives of social space have recognized the benefits of adopting interdisciplinary methods and sources. This has led to reconsideration of the role of literary and visual representations in the construction and making of ‘imagined’ space, and in the dissection of the relationship between community and human action. Yet, while theory has begun to inform historical practice, the application of interdisciplinary tools and methodologies falls behind.

The object of the conference was to tackle these issues. It interrogated spatially related communities: how the inhabitants of the same streets or towns constructed, responded to and used their physical locations to forge a shared sense of identity, or to bring about social and political change. It also served as a practical forum: promoting and debating the value of interdisciplinary practices, methodology and application in ‘envisioning community’ and reassessing history. The conference aimed to build on the challenges wrought by the ‘spatial turn’: exploring not only how the study of space and location enriches our telling of the past, but how the use of interdisciplinary methods and approaches to community can benefit our understanding of the ‘lived’ past.

The conference was designed to appeal to scholars from many disciplines, history, art, film and television, translation and literature, sociology and politics.  With the underlying aim of exploring practice it was intended to be a challenging workshop-style conference which fully interrogated methodologies of translating communities from the nineteenth century to the present.


Future Perfect: Art, Gallery Education and Regeneration
engage/enquire International Conference

4-6 November 2009

Toynbee Studios and venues across London

Future Perfect took place in the ever-changing landscape of East London. Experts in architecture, future thinking and archaeology joined an international lineup of writers, artists, educators and curators to explore the role of visual arts organisations and artists in observing and shaping the places where people live and work. The event included keynote speakers, case studies, breakout sessions, practical workshops and plenty of opportunities for networking and discussion.

Contributors included: Kerstin Bergendal, Artist, Art Plan Trekroner; CAMP; Clare Cumberlidge, Co-director, General Public Agency; James Dixon, Archaeologist, University of Bristol; Claire Doherty, Director, Situations; Paul Domela, Programme Director, Liverpool Biennial; Danielle Duggan, Design Matters; Karen Eslea and Sarah Martin, Head of Learning and Head of Exhibitions, Turner Contemporary; David Gunn, Director, Incidental; Anna Harding, Chief Executive, SPACE; Sophie Hope; Donald Hyslop, Head of Community Partnerships and Regeneration, Tate Modern; Malcolm Miles, Professor of Cultural Theory, University of Plymouth and author of Cities and Cultures; muf, Architects and Artists; Laura Oldfield Ford, Artist and author of ‘zine Savage Messiah; Jennie Savage, Artist; Iain Sinclair, Author of Hackney, That Rose-Red Empire; Marijke Steedman, Head of Education, Whitechapel Gallery; Adam Sutherland, Director, Grizedale Arts; Charlie Tims, Demos Associate and Co-author of The Dreaming City; Ultra red, International collective.

Visit for information about the conference theme, speakers, breakout sessions and accommodation. Click here to download the conference flyer.


Briefing Sessions to launch Ian Dove QC’s Advice 2009 – Public Art and the Planning System

Over the last ten years the planning system has been, and continues to be, reformed to support the delivery of the Government’s Sustainable Communities agenda – the social, economic and environmental development of places. Over the same period, public art has become seen as a key ingredient in the success of development and regeneration initiatives. Therefore, ixia, in partnership with international legal practice DLA Piper LLP, has sought the advice of Ian Dove QC at No5 Chambers on the relationship between public art and the planning system. The last time this was done was in 1988 by Robert Carnwath QC.

To help people understand the Advice, free briefing sessions were held at three locations across the country. Ian Dove QC; Jonathan Banks, CEO of ixia; and David Brammer, of DLA Piper, provided an overview of the current position of public art within the planning system and talked through the Advice and its implications, took questions and encouraged debate.

Monday 14 September 2009, Birmingham – 12 noon
Monday 28 September 2009, Leeds – 12 noon
Monday 12 October 2009, London – 8:15am


Art & Architecture Journal / British Ceramics Biennial Conference
Ceramic City – Design for Public Space

Friday 9 October 2009 – Ceramic City Conference
Saturday 10 October 2009 – British Ceramics Biennial Bus Tour

Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, Bethesda St, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent ST1 3DW

In partnership with the British Ceramics Biennial.  3 October – 13 December 2009

Stoke-on-Trent is one of a network of European Ceramic Cities, and this conference was planned to give voice to those working with ceramics in the public realm. Speakers included the architect Ted Cullinan, Samantha Hardingham talking about Cedric Price, Francoise Schein from the Paris-based Association Inscrire, Lara Taves from Atelier Azulejaria, Rio de Janeiro, and exhibiting artists Stephen Dixon, Gwen Heeney and Vicky Shaw. The second day was based on tours of the Biennial exhibitions and associated events, as well as having an opportunity to experience the City’s heritage and potential. The conference themes were further developed in the associated issue of the Art & Architecture Journal, published in September.

Click here to download a conference flyer.


A Place for Creativity?
Unlocking the original in urban design and development

A national one day conference from RUDI & Places Matter
The 2nd art & urban design conference
, 16th June 2009
The Lowry, Salford Quays, Greater Manchester

  • Collaborations: Can Artists, Architects & Urban Designers Work Together?
  • Identity & Individuality: True Creativity
  • Community Connections: Avoiding Elitism
  • Funding & Sponsorship: Who Pays & How?

As the leading resource and knowledge sharing network for urban design and placemaking, RUDI believes that there is an important emerging agenda for how art and the creative community are involved in the planning, design, development and delivery of vibrant, culturally relevant and inclusive communities.

The challenge extends across both the physical design and the animation and use of place, in particular the public realm.

‘A Place for Creativity?’ took place in Salford, Greater Manchester on 16th June, organised by RUDI in partnership with Places Matter!, an Architecture & Built Environment Centre for the North West of England.

In 2008, RUDI, in partnership with Public Art South West, organised ‘Fairytale or Horror Story… Artist & Urban Designer Collaborations: What Value do they bring?’ to look at artist and urban designer collaboration. Following the success of the event, held in Bristol and attended by over 120 people, this second national event is being organised to take forward the debate on the role of artists and the creative community in placemaking.

To listen to the sessions, click here to be redirected to RUDI’s website.


3rd National Public Art Conference
Art in Public: The Culture of Possibilities

Broadway Media Centre, Nottingham
7th December 2007

The 3rd National Public Art conference presented the role of art, culture and architecture as catalysts for change in shaping regional identity, focusing on projects in Corby and Nottingham.

The event investigated artists’ responses and interventions to civic culture and the challenge of architectural and environmental regeneration. It examined how art and culture-led approaches can provide wider social and economic benefits for people, places and communities.

For further information click here.
To download the conference brochure, click here.


Art in Public: Sculpture Parks & Land Art Commissions

Yorkshire Sculpture Park, West Bretton, Wakefield

Friday 2nd November 2007 – Conference: with more than 120 dedicated sculpture parks, trails and gardens in the UK, this conference examined this expanding phenomenon.

Saturday 3rd November 2007 – YSP Walkabout: The second day included a tour led by YSP staff of the sculpture park, Longside Gallery and the Andy Goldsworthy exhibition.

For further information, click here.
To download the conference brochure, click here.


Building Cultures: Can Artists Make Great Places?

Birkbeck College, University of London, Bloomsbury, London WC1E
Thursday 20th September 2007

Part of London Design Festival and Urban Design Week 2007

Creativity, Culture and Change were the themes of a one-day conference on leading regeneration projects through art and creativity with a focus on the mega-development at Kings Cross. The event included presentations of Artists for Places – a partnership between CABE, A&B and Arts Council England; an evaluation by Comedia on the PROJECT scheme to support public art strategies embedded within the planning system; an open forum with key speakers on art, architecture, landscape and planning, debating the role or art and cultural activity within the design of the built environment.

For further information, click here.
To download the conference brochure, click here.


Building Cultures Urban Walkabout

Friday 21st September 2007

The Building Cultures Urban Walkabout offered a choice of two guided tours around Kings Cross or along the Euston Road charting previous public realm commissions and interventions and revealing the physical and social landscape within which the new art and cultural activity will be sited. The walk was followed by lunch, discussion and debate drawing together the themes of the conference with the issues and opportunities arising in Kings Cross.

For further information, click here.
To download the conference brochure, click here.


2nd National Public Art Conference
The City in Transition: Art in the Public Realm and the Creation of a Vibrant Civic Culture

17th November 2006

The 2nd National Public Art Conference focused on issues of place-making and transformation within the contemporary urban renaissance together with the role of art, media and culture as catalysts for change in shaping regional identity. The conference offered a creative, progressive and positive vision of art to the regeneration agenda with case studies, documentation and discussion. Key speakers from art, media, architecture and property provided current information on how art and culture-led approaches, working across disciplines, are influencing the built environment.

Organised by Art & Architecture Journal and Landor Conferences and supported by ixia.

For further information, click here.
To download the conference brochure, click here.
For a CD Rom of the papers, please visit:


The Public Garden: Art – Landscape – Environment
The Effect of Art and Regeneration in Shaping Green and Public Spaces

18th October 2006

The Public Garden conference was concerned with the collaboration of landscape architects and designers with artists on public realm projects. It explored the current experience of visual art programmes, installations and events, looked at the effect of art and regeneration in shaping experiences of rural and urban parks, considered projects for diverse natural and managed green public and private space.

Other highlights:

  • Utilising art and environment for tourism and marketing
  • The artist as mediator and catalyst
  • The role of local authorities
  • Ecological and sustainable use of open spaces
  • Collaborative and interdisciplinary ways of working
  • New and ambitious art + landscape schemes
  • Wastelands regeneration projects

For further information, click here.
To download a conference brochure, click here.
A CD ROM is available which contains: copies of all speaker presentations; audio of all speakers presentations and question and discussion sessions; and speaker biographies and any additional papers they have supplied. Please visit


How was it for you? Assessing Impact of Artists’s Practice in the Public Realm

4th October 2005

This event was held at the Mechanics Theatre, Manchester Rd, Burnley on Tuesday 4th October 2005. Co-organised with Mid Pennine Arts this one day event explored the evaluation of public art practice in the context of live projects.
The agenda included :

  • Catherine Ward-Thompson (OpenSpace Research Centre) talking on evaluation of public art practice
  • Nick Hunt (Mid Pennine Arts) & TonkinLiu Architects talking on the Panopticons Project
  • A site visit to one of the Panopticon sites

Documents can be downloaded by clicking on the links below:


Public Art: Regeneration, Diversity & Engagement

Think Tank, Millennium Point, Birmingham
15th March 2005

This one day event for those engaged in the commissioning, production and mediation of public art and the built environment explored current practice in the context of regeneration, engagement and diversity. The agenda for discussion was introduced in a series of papers contributed by artist Pervaiz Khan, Katherine Clarke from MUF and Noha Nasser from the University of Central England, all of whom facilitated the working groups on the day. The day was chaired by Wendy Shillam of Shillam & Smith Architecture and Urbanism.

Regeneration, Diversity & Engagement, March 2005-Speaker’s biographies

The speakers’ papers can be downloaded here:
Pervaiz Khan
Katherine Clarke
Noha Nasser


Audience & Place: current research projects exploring impact and identity within public art practice

Milton Keynes
October 2004

A one day event held in Milton Keynes with contributions from Gillian Rose & Doreen Massey, (Open University); artists Jacqui Rodger and Jayne Murray; Tim Hall, (University of Gloucestershire) and Anna Douglas (Independent Curator & Researcher).

To download the event flyer, click here.
To download the Speakers’ Biographies, click here.


Designs on our Environment?
Establishing multi-disciplinary working Practice

Arup Offices, Bristol
22nd April 2004

A one day event held in Bristol and a collaboration with Public Art South West. Speakers: Philip Singleton, Design Advisor, Birmingham City Council, Artist Nayan Kulkarni, Maggie Bolt from PASW and Dominic Murphy from Creating Excellence. To read the full transcript of the conference on the PASW website, please click here.


Should I stay or Should I go?

December 2003

A one day event held in partnership with Canterbury City Council considered the issues surrounding the decommissioning of public art. The event marked the launch of a new research study supported by the City Council and the Arts Council of England. Speakers included: Jon Rowland, Andrew Knight, Hazel Colquhoun and Sam Wilkinson.


Participatory Public Art

June 2003

An event with Fusion Arts Oxford exploring the complex relationship between participatory practice and conventions of commissioning. To read the event flyer, please click here


National Conference Creative Space

April 2003

A one day event bringing together representatives from the built environment, research and artistic practice in order to discuss future possibilites of public art practice to establish a dialogue that created an opportunity for NEW THINKING, NEW PARTNERSHIPS and NEW WORK. For the full Conference Programme, click here.

The Keynote Speech was given by Mel Gooding and artist John Newling was invited to make a response to the day’s proceedings.


If you always do what you have always done the future will look a lot like the past

October 2002

A collaboration with Midland Architecture and the Designed Environment (MADE) and Public Art West Midlands (PAWM). Click here to download the Conference Invitation. To download the conference Information Sheet, click here.


Public Art in the Landscape

Ramsbottom, Greater Manchester
March 2002

In collaboration with the Irwell Sculpture Trust.


Beyond the Angel – Public Art and Regeneration

January 2002

In collaboration with Northern Arts.


Public Art and Cultural Diversity – towards an inclusive practice

October 2001

In collaboration with Public Art Leicester and Leicester City Council. Supported by East Midlands Arts.


National Conference: Emergence

October 2001

A one day conference to explore the changing nature of artistic practice in response to emerging technology.
The Auditorium at Bloomberg, Finsbury Square, London.
Speakers: Lia Ghilardi, Matt Locke, Clive Gillman, John Rouse.


National Conference: The Benefits of Public Art

RIBA, London
March 2000

This symposium was held by the Public Art Forum at RIBA London in March 2000. It looked at conceiving and evaluating the benefits of public art in a complex environment.
Speakers: Jos Boys, Fred Manson, Gavin Jones.

Click here to download the report.