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OMC Policy Handbook on Artists' Residencies
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Funding artists’ residencies
5.1 Introduction
The financial crisis and austerity measures in Europe have meant that organisations hosting artists’ residency programmes, like organisations in other sectors, increasingly have to face rising costs and cuts in funding budgets. This makes the sourcing of funds much more challenging but it is also a catalyst for innovation which gives rise to new models of funding. Public funding still remains a very important source of financing; however, new models are being developed and refined. While a large percentage of residencies are incorporated as non-profit entities, there is also a growing cadre of programs that choose to operate under a different business structure, such as programs that are created, embedded and operated within a commercial venture.
Residency programmes subscribe to a wide variety of funding models. Some models do not provide any allowances for the artists and may even require a participation fee, while others may provide per diem allowances. Some residencies also incorporate artist fees in their programme. These are associated with the ancillary activities that the artists may be asked to undertake.
Some residencies provide part of the financial support whilst others may be all inclusive packages for the invited or selected artists. However, there are fundamental requirements for ensuring basic well-being and safety for participating artists. No matter where the funding comes from, these should be given careful consideration.
5.2 Costs of running a residency programme
There is no template for costs associated with running a residency. The costs vary according to the type and length of the programme as well as the nature of the residency. For example, requirements and associated costs of running a performing or visual arts residency may be substantially greater than those for hosting writers in a residency programme.
All residency programmes have to take into account operational and running costs which may include such expenses as overheads for administration, coordinators/managers, hospitality, materials, air fares, contracts, visa requirements in the case of artists from third countries, consumables, accommodation and studio space costs for housing artists. Costs also may be subject to fluctuations related, for instance, to travel expenses for incoming and outgoing artists to and from third countries.
Residencies may include, outreach work and opportunities for teaching others, host events associated with the residency such as exhibitions, performances, projects within the community. These would involve considerations for contracted labour, venue rent, equipment hire, etc.
Costs should also factor in allowances for residency documentation and evaluation, a necessary process both in terms of institutional memory requisites and in order to facilitate and ensure transparency.
5.3 Sources of funding
Organisations hosting residencies access their funding from various sources. Some models may be solely dependent on public funding whilst others may opt for private funding only, mixed public and private models or the innovative hybrid models that incorporate a business enterprise to help fund the costs of the programme.
Informal research conducted by Res Artis, showed that 155 Res Artis members that participated in the study welcomed around 4,262 artists during 2013. This small cohort may give some indication of the dynamic activity and creative mobility that residencies generate. Residencies of course need to fund their activities in order to fulfil their remit and different funding models exist to affect this.
Some indication of this funding diversity comes from data gathered from member organisations hosted on the Res Artis Website which, while not formal research, is still a helpful exercise to look at. Out of a total of 134 respondent artists in residence organisations, 73 received public funding only, 34 relied on a mix of public and private funding whilst 22 relied on both public and self-generated funding. Similarly, the OMC working group on Artists’ Residencies asked participating experts to submit examples of best practice in the field. The examples submitted subscribed to the full range of funding models, from models that receive full state funding, mixed models including both state and private funding streams as well as hybrid models that relied on commercial activity to generate funding for their air programme. These observations are by no means prescriptive and are only included to illustrate the range of models encountered.
5.4 Public funding
Across the EU, many national bodies provide state funding for artist mobility. Almost all European countries devote part of their cultural budget towards artist mobility.1See examples in: http://on-the-move.org/funding/europe (On the Move); and IFAACA (list by country for funding opportunities for artist mobility updated in 2014). This is a policy that encourages and supports intra EU mobility of creative professionals. Some of these funds are also directed towards the outgoing mobility of EU nationals to third countries, the European Economic Area, (Liechtenstein, Norway) and Switzerland and that of incoming artists and art professionals from third countries too. Such funds may be structured funding programmes at city, state/county, national, regional and international levels.
Examples include national, federal or regional state funding bodies, as well as funds originating from Foreign Affairs Ministries (e.g. the Cultural Diplomacy Fund co-managed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry for Tourism and Culture of Malta) and the Visegrad Artist Residency Program which was set up in 2006 in order to facilitate artist mobility and citizen exchange in the Visegrad Group (V4) countries (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia). Other such regional funding streams include the Nordic Grant, Norway Grants and EEA Grants.
Some public funding comes in the form of specific grants to an organisation hosting a residency by a city authority (e.g. Künstlerhaus Stuttgart Atelierprogramm - www.kuenstler haus.de) which is a 12 month artists’ residency programme for international artists supported by the city of Stuttgart. Another example is Lokaal 01 which offers residencies for young artists and art critics, and is funded by the Flemish Community and the city of Antwerp (http://www.lokaal01.be/site/).
Public funding may be tied up to national mobility grants that enable artists who have been accepted for residencies to realise their goal. Other grants fund exchanges that also include artists participating in residency programmes as beneficiaries (e.g. Malta Arts Fund). These can be specifically tailored to provide artists with the opportunity to apply for funding that would cover traveling and sometimes accommodation costs that would facilitate their participation in residency programmes. Some grants also cater for event participation and collaborations.2The cultural mobility network On the Move has put together a Guide to Funding Opportunities for the International Mobility of Artists and Culture Professionals in Europe (http://on-the-move.org/funding/europe/).
5.5 EU funding schemes
Creative Europe3http://ec.europa.eu/programmes/creative-europe/index_en.htm , the framework programme of the European Union dedicated to the cultural and creative sectors for the period 2014-2020, aims at creating the best possible conditions for artists, culture professionals and cultural organisations to work across borders so that their work can reach as many people as possible in Europe and internationally.
Even though there is no funding strand dedicated to Artists' Residencies per se, cross-border mobility, which is a policy priority, is embedded in the Creative Europe's Culture sub-programme in its 4 action lines.
5.6 Mixed Models
A number of organisations rely on mixed models to fund their programmes. These take the form of part state and part private funding. Such schemes exist for example in Croatia, Finland, Croatia, and Lithuania. State funding may be based on specific agreements, for example, where state funding via region or municipality is given to private foundations or organisations via the detailing of workers from the public sector or by directly funding the salaries of the organisation's employees.
5.6.1 Models incorporating commercial agencies
Within the burgeoning field of artists’ residencies, new models for serving artists are being developed and refined. While a large percentage of residencies are incorporated as non-profit entities, there is a growing cadre of programmes that choose to operate under a different business structure, such as programs that are created, embedded, and operated within a commercial venture.
Cultural innovators are looking at the creation of hybrid organisations that follow an essentially cultural brief but depend on commercial revenue to sustain operations or residencies that have a combination of revenue generated by commercial hospitality via accommodation.
One other innovative model that has been conceived out of the artist-to-artist network architecture is inspired by the popular “couch surfing” phenomenon. In this model, artists swap studio-space and or/ apartments. The platform site Artquest (http://artquest-artelier.com/) provides a cost free platform with 30 international partners to this effect (see also chapter 3 on new partnerships).
5.7 Taxation
Differences between the systems of taxation and exemptions in EU Member States often pose obstacles to the cross-border mobility of artists and culture professionals. Under EU law, EU Member States have the freedom to design their tax systems in the way they consider to be the most appropriate to meet their domestic policy objectives. While the OMC working group is aware of EU's limited competences in the field of taxation of individuals, the members want to draw attention to a problem related to the taxation of artists who are recipients of grants connected in particular with artists’ residencies.
In some Member States, such as Germany, grants connected with artists' residencies are usually exempted from taxation. In other Member States, artists may be asked to pay taxes on grants awarded for a residency, because these grants are considered as income in the Member State where the grant-holder is a resident for tax purposes. The artist is taxed for his/her grant in spite of the fact that in the country where the awarding institution is based (for instance, in Germany) such a grant would be tax-exempt. The OMC group members are also aware that, in order to avoid double taxation and allocate taxing rights Member States may conclude tax treaties with each other. Nevertheless, the content and interpretation of these bilateral tax treaties by the contracting Member State, including whether or not to include a specific provision on source taxation of non-resident artists, may create problems in cross-border situations. In this case, the attractiveness and purpose of grants awarded by a given Member State may be compromised and, in the long-term, be harmful to the freedom of intra-EU mobility and cross-border cultural exchange.
The ideal solution would be a general EU-wide tax exemption for grants connected with artists’ residencies awarded solely in order to promote art and without a service rendered in return by the artist. On the other hand, given EU's limited competence in the taxation of individuals and the requirement for a unanimous decision by the Council on direct taxation legislation, the OMC working group believes that the EU could work closer with its Member States to promote and facilitate the exchange of relevant best practices on artists' taxation.
1     See examples in: http://on-the-move.org/funding/europe (On the Move); and IFAACA (list by country for funding opportunities for artist mobility updated in 2014).  »
2     The cultural mobility network On the Move has put together a Guide to Funding Opportunities for the International Mobility of Artists and Culture Professionals in Europe (http://on-the-move.org/funding/europe/).  »
3     http://ec.europa.eu/programmes/creative-europe/index_en.htm  »