Artsadmin and the Environment

 

We believe that artists and arts organisations have an important role to play in exploring, communicating and taking practical action against issues around climate change and the environment.

Artsadmin is continually working to reduce the environmental impact of the work we do across our artistic programme, how we run our organisation and building, and how we are funded.

Sustainability and our artistic programme
Artsadmin and Julie’s Bicycle are co-delivering on Season for Change, a UK-wide programme of cultural responses celebrating the environment and inspiring urgent action on climate change.

As founder members of a European network called Imagine 2020, we have produced projects including 2 Degrees Festival (in 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019) and commissioned Plunge and Empathy Museum, in collaboration with LIFT.

In 2019, we secured EU funding from Creative Europe to continue this collaborative work on art and climate change through a 4-year project called Art Climate Transition (ACT).

We work with artists and activists, supporting grassroots activity as well as commissioning and producing particular projects. We also take steps to make the way we work more sustainable, both at our Toynbee Studios home and in the projects that we produce all over the world – for example, we have created a green rider for touring.

As founder members of the Imagine 2020 network, we have produced projects including 2 Degrees Festival (in 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019) and commissioned Plunge and Empathy Museum, in collaboration with LIFT. In 2019, we secured EU funding from Creative Europe to continue this collaborative work on art and climate change through a 4-year project called Art Climate Transition (ACT). We work with artists and activists, supporting grassroots activity as well as commissioning and producing particular projects and have also taken steps to make the way we work more sustainable, both at our Toynbee Studios home and in the projects we produce all over the world.

Toynbee Studios
Artsadmin runs Toynbee Studios as sustainably as we can and aims to make Toynbee Studios carbon neutral by 2025. We are now embarking on a capital project to become renewably-powered and heated, single-use plastic-free and zero waste, thanks to Arts Council England Small Capital funding.

We have a Green staff subcommittee that meet quarterly and monitors our Environmental Policy and Action Plan, which you can read or download on our Policies pages. All our measures are in the Plan but some of things we do in our building include:

  • All of our electricity comes from 100% renewable sources, from our solar panels or through our electricity provider.
  • We save water through devices in all toilet cisterns and water meters.
  • We recycle as much as possible, from regular items like paper, metal and glass to coffee, light bulbs and electrical goods, and reuse or repurpose items like sets and furniture.
  • Our café is vegetarian and only offers biodegradable single-use cups and cutlery, encouraging non-disposable crockery.
  • We encourage greener travel, including commuting to work via bicycle, walking and public transports, and to use planes rather than trains for longer distance travel where possible.
  • Our website is hosted on a renewably-powered platform and, when print is needed, we produce it on recycled paper with renewably-powered waterless presses and eco inks.

In 2014, we installed solar panels and were awarded a Green Tourism for London Gold Award and in 2012, we were runners up in the Art & Culture category of the Observer Ethical Awards.

Ethical funding
In 2015 we joined Platform's initiative Fossil Funds Free, which means we do not take any oil, coal, or gas corporate sponsorship for our cultural work. We have been an active voice in the arts about ethical funding and we created an Ethical Fundraising Policy in 2015, which has been reviewed and evolved over the years. You can download and read our policy (in PDF or text formats), which encourages relationships with organisations that actively operate for the positive benefit of people, animals and the environment in a fair and transparent way.

Marketing
Our marketing team has been exploring greener ways of working – they even wrote a blog about it. In terms of physical marketing materials, we only produce what we need, and seek out greener alternatives where possible. Our printed materials are printed with waterless presses, vegetable-based inks and machinery powered by 100% renewable energy. In 2018, we switched from using single use plastic cups in in our café to reusable plastic cups.

Our website hosting is powered entirely by renewable energy with Kualo, one of the very first hosts to make this important step. Their data centre has various efficiency measures in place, such as economic free air cooling when the UK weather is cold enough, hot aisle containment so the hot air expelled from the servers never mixes with the chilled air, and automated sensor-controlled lighting.

Read our Environmental Policy and Action Plan

Michael Pinsky's Plunge, commissioned by Artsadmin and LIFT. Photo by Julian Andrews.

Michael Pinsky's Plunge, commissioned by Artsadmin and LIFT. Photo by Julian Andrews.

Blog Post:

#SeasonforChange: organisations and artists across the UK spark conversations about the future of our planet

Artsadmin and Julie’s Bicycle are delighted to announce that Season for Change is underway with over 30 events having taken place in its first 6 weeks of the season!

Blog Post:

Investing in hope: the Imagine 2020 Summer Lab 2018

Artist, producer and researcher, Joanne Matthews, reflects on what took place at this year's Imagine 2020 Summer Lab, as a group of participants explored how we can bring together art, activism and science to tackle climate change and engage with global transition.

Crash Contingency, The Laboratory of InsurrectionaryImagination, 2 Degrees Festival 2009. Photo by Immo Klink

Blog Post:

2 Degrees Festival 2017: Open Call

As a key part of 2 Degrees Festival 2017, we have opened a call for proposal for a new participatory project. Apply now.

Blog Post:

#2DegreesFestival: on Storify

A compiled story of the festival based on the moments shared online using #2DegreesFestival.

Video:

Plunge on film

A short film about Michael Pinsky's Plunge, a collaboration between Artsadmin and LIFT which took place in London in Spring 2012.

Photo from Michael Pinsky's Plunge, a co-commission with LIFT. Photo by Julian Andrews

Blog Post:

Greening the arts

Today at TippingPoint Newcastle, Arts Council England announced plans to embed environmental sustainability into funding agreements.

Photo by Immo Klink

Blog Post:

Early Warning Signs – Adopt a Sign!

Ellie Harrison's campaign to find organisations to apdopt a climate change sign...

Play Video

Video:

This is tomorrow - Two Degrees video

Mark Godber and Sam Trotman introduce the 2011 festival and some of the artists and projects involved.

Blog Post:

A is for Action

A glossary for arts and activism created as part of Interference 2009

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