PERSISTENCE through multiple proposal ideas

(Green Cultural Policy Mind Map)

(Green Cultural Policy Mind Map)


Research questions;

  1. How can the Green Party develop their Cultural Policy draft to integrate their policies on the protection of the environment ?

  2. What are the first practical steps for the party in enacting their cultural policy?

  • Aim: to assist the Green Party in the development of their Cultural Policy and to take the first practical steps towards realising these values in the real world

  • Reflection: I was working on this proposal idea from October to November 2018. I was interested in cultural policy at the time and the prospect of developing and implementing The Green Party’s draft cultural policy was extremely exciting. Of the 12 policy priorities the party name on their website only 1, Irish Language, expressly relates to the cultural space. Making contact with Councillor Claire Byrne, she sent me the party’s draft cultural policy which was being developed by a volunteer steering group. Within that draft policy was the progressive idea to establish a new network of local artists and arts officers within the five administrative areas of Dublin. This network would function as an hyper localised arts council addressing more directly the artistic life of the locality. In addition there was the petition made by Councillor Claire Byrne to transform the derelict Pigeon House Precinct in Poolbeg into a artistic, creative and cultural hub. This proposal idea was exciting because it held the prospect of integrating cultural and environmental policy in a practical way with real world implications. However, as correspondence with Councillor Claire Byrne became more sporadic I got the impression that the cultural policy draft wasn’t a priority. In a last attempt to continue my discussion with the party I visited their offices on Suffolk Street. After that my correspondence with the party stopped; this was in early November. I’m not sure what was happening on the inside, but I suspect that the party had limited time and resources and needed to priorities their policies. The cultural policy steering group where all volunteers and I suspect that it is a constant struggle to raise funds. I presume when funds are raised, they are directly channeled into priority campaigns leaving other policies at the draft phase.


Research questions;

  1. To what extent does the creative residency generate social cohesion amongst the group?

  2. To what extent does the creative residency encourage further participation in the arts in the medium - long term?

  • Aim: to explore the effectiveness of the project on workshop participants in terms of social cohesion and further participation in the arts.

Reflection: the BeSpecACTive! project is an EU funded project designed to increase access and participation to the arts. It is coordinated by Giuliana Ciancio and Luca Ricci at the European level, and Maria Fleming; General Manager of the Dublin Theatre Festival, at the local level. I heard about his project through Katie Lowry at the Creative Europe Desk Ireland in October 2018. Visiting her office in Marian Square she introduced me to the project and put me in contact with Maria Fleming. This was an interesting project because it marked the relationship between artistic and civic engagement; that participation in the creative process is a rehearsal for acting on the political stage.I was drawn to this project because it placed an emphasis on grass groots community building through creative action. The 2018 report produced by BeSpecACTive! entitled Breaking the Fourth Wall became a key piece of literature in the early development of the project. My search strategy was to use the references cited in the text as a way in which to dig deeper into the topic of participatory arts. Breaking the Fourth Wall is a large an in depth book , however, that covers many topics from cultural policy to documentation of the creative process and arts management . In the initial phases I was focused on the Theories of Spectatorship; models of seeing and experiencing that debate how audiences relate to a piece of art. Key theorists within this reading included; Jacques Rancière, Guy Debord, Claire Bishop, Antonin Artaud and Bertolt Brecht. However, in late November during the initial presentation, I realised that this field of research wasn’t relevant to my research questions about artistic value. These theories provided a historical background to the research, but where tangential to my research questions. Yet Breaking the Fourth Wall remains a key text in my literature review, however, my reading of it is now directed by my research questions in mind.

(Breaking the Fourth Wall: 2018: References)

(Breaking the Fourth Wall: 2018: References)



Research Questions;

  1. To what extent does the Laying the Foundations workshop generate collaboration and imagination amongst the group

  2. What value do participants experience as a result of participating in these workshops

  • Aim: the extent to which LTF encourages collaboration and imagination amongst the group and the value participants attach to this experience

Reflection: The focus group workshop between Creativity, Culture and Education and Helium Arts on February 12th and 13th 2019 was the catalyst for this proposal. Honing in on the dependent variables of imagination and collaboration according to The Five Creative Habits of Mind Model (Lucus: 2016), it was my intention to use these two measures to study the impact of the theatre workshop on workshop participants. Yet this research proposal didn’t go forward for two reasons. One, Dave was facilitating his workshops between April 29th and May 1st 2019 and I hadn’t received ethics approval to collect data. Two, Dave was under the impression that the conducting of interviews would involve a series of informal chats between myself and participants as opposed to an in depth one hour, semi - structured interview. Although I clarified this point with Dave, it didn’t leave us enough time to meet in person and discuss the details and procedure of the chosen interview technique. However literature on the role of creativity within an educational context played an important role in identifying the scope of the project.