Artist Voices

How is Public Art Commissioned?

Our regular Artist Voices event is back and this time we’re asking ‘how is public art commissioned?’ Through a series of conversations with independent producer Katie Daley-Yates from Host Productions you can hear about the process of working in public space from the artists’ perspective.

Throughout April and May 2021, we will be releasing four, hour-long conversations with visual artists Anne-Marie Culhane, Eleanor Goulding, Nayan Kulkarni and Hew Locke, along with a compilation video of selected highlights. These will be available on the ‘a space’ arts YouTube channel. Release dates and further details are listed below.

We recorded these conversations last year, while lockdown restrictions meant that an in-person event wasn’t possible. We look forward to returning to a real world panel discussion format later in 2021. The Youtube player has the option to turn on subtitles by selecting the subtitles/closed captions symbol in the bottom right of the player.

To coincide with the launch of Artist Voices: How Public Art is Commissioned? producer Katie Daley-Yates is offering five, free 30 minute development sessions to artists based in the SO postcode interested in working in the public realm. If you would like to book a meeting, please contact Katie directly at Sessions will be offered on a first-come-first-served basis.



How is Public Art Commissioned? Best Bits

Available from Sunday 25th April at 2pm

This best bits compilation contains selected highlights from the four, hour-long conversations that were recorded as part of this series. It will give you an introduction to each artist, an insight into their public art practices and and idea about what topics are covered in the longer conversations.




How is Public Art Commissioned? With Anne-Marie Culhane

Available from Sunday 2nd May at 2pm

Anne-Marie Culhane is based in Devon and works as an artist, activist and collaborator across a range of disciplines in outdoor spaces, community centres, parks, in the street and sometimes in galleries and museums. In Anne-Marie’s conversation she reflects on the importance of time, being able to sit with a place and how the seasons play a part in denoting how long her commissions are active.




How is Public Art Commissioned? With Eleanor Goulding

Available from Sunday 9th May at 2pm

Denman + Gould a collaborative practice made up of Eleanor Goulding and Russell Denman work from their base in rural Dorset. In Eleanor’s conversation she speaks about working with ‘a space’ arts on their first public art commissions since they moved out of the commercial design business. They reflect on how work and pressure is shared when working collaboratively and the importance of the artist’s hands in the making process.




How is Public Art Commissioned? With Nayan Kulkarni

Available from Sunday 16th May at 2pm

Nayan Kulkarni is based in London and interested in the effects and affects of cinematic imagining on human experience and the urban environment. This interest is expressed in light, sound, video and performance based works in galleries and the public realm. In Nayan’s conversation he reflects on risk taking and being part of team when delivering large-scale public artworks as well as the importance of paperwork and contracts when working in public space!




How is Public Art Commissioned? With Hew Locke

Available from Sunday 23rd May at 2pm

Hew Locke is based in London and through his work explores the languages of colonial and post-colonial power, how different cultures fashion their identities through visual symbols of authority, and how these representations are altered by the passage of time. In Hew’s conversation he reflects on the need for artists to hold on to their ideas within the process of development, but still be open to differences of opinion and how memorialising history is a tricky business.




We have produced a range of resources related to public art practice as well as the individual artists involved in these conversations.


Public Art Resources

Artist Links and Information

Key Points from Conversations

Set In Stone by David Olusoga

Questions about Art, Ecology and the Society we Embody

Grant Kester Conversation Piece


Artist Voices is a programme of panel discussion events and interviews, inviting artists, curators and programmers to share their experiences and answer your questions.

You can listen to recordings of previous events on our Soundcloud page.

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