Art Fund unveils £2m in new funding opportunities - Museums Association

Art Fund unveils £2m in new funding opportunities

Grants available to help organisations reimagine their approach to engagement
Funding
Judges' Lodgings Museum received a Reimagine grant earlier this year to reinterpret the history of its collections relating to the Slave Trade, Slavery and Gillows of Lancaster & London
Judges' Lodgings Museum received a Reimagine grant earlier this year to reinterpret the history of its collections relating to the Slave Trade, Slavery and Gillows of Lancaster & London

Art Fund has announced £2m in new funding opportunities for museums and galleries across the UK this summer.

The national art charity is launching another round of its Reimagine fund, which is designed to support creativity and increase stability in the sector as it navigates recovery from the pandemic.

The key aim of this year’s programme is to fund projects that will “help organisations reimagine their approach to engagement”. Grants of between £10,000 and £50,000 will be available for projects that focus on this aim in relation to audiences and communities, as well as to collections, resources and workforce. The scheme will be open for applications from 4 July to 12 September.

Art Fund is working with Museum Development UK, which will distribute £200,000 of the £2m pot to small- to medium-sized museums. The collaboration is intended to maximise the reach and impact of the charity’s grants across the four nations.

Also due to launch soon is the next round of the Weston Loan Programme with Art Fund, which enables museums to borrow important works from major collections by funding costs such as transportation, conservation and training. Ambitious, exciting and high-profile loan projects that have the potential to be genuinely transformative for the borrowing museum or gallery are particularly encouraged. The scheme will be open for applications from 20 June to 12 August.

Art Fund’s latest annual report shows that grants totalling £5.8m were given across its programmes in 2021, with the charity on track to have given more than £6m in Covid response funding by the end of 2022. Recent research by the charity revealed an upwards trend in income and visitors to UK museums, with both steadily climbing to 68% and 61% of pre-pandemic levels respectively.

Art Fund director Jenny Waldman said: “Our latest annual report shows Art Fund’s breadth and depth of support for a rapidly evolving museum sector. Our vision for the next five years builds on our 119-year history of building public collections, connecting it with our burgeoning role helping to build and broaden audiences and amplify the work of more than 800 museums across the UK.

“Thanks to the generosity of Art Fund’s members, who buy the National Art Pass, and supporters we have been able to step up to help museums through the challenges of the pandemic and into an exciting future.”

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