Live Work Fund

Existing collaboration

Aims and activities

Aims and questions

The Live Work Fund is a collaboration to support artists and producers working with music and live performance to sustain their practice through Covid-19.

It opened for applications in October 2020, received 1,283 bids and made 33 awards in December. It has been designed to provide a significant financial bedrock of £20,000 for each of the 33 artists and creatives, from which new artistic approaches, risks and experiments can be undertaken.

With financial precarity undermining the flourishing of so much exceptional talent, the fund aims to help prevent exceptional individuals and collaborators from leaving their practice behind and provide an alternative support mechanism to hardship funding. The fund will also provide meaningful professional development support through expert mentors.

Jerwood Arts has long been committed to supporting artists to develop their practice, and unlike many arts funders, is able to fund individuals.

This specialised focus prompted conversations with other funders who shared a concern about the economic impact of the pandemic on freelance artists and creatives, especially in music and the performing arts. Collaboration proceeded with relative ease and speed: the fund went from conception to launch within three months.

The significant support from Wolfson Foundation, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and The Linbury Trust was the first time these funders had worked together in this way, agreeing a shared set of aims that they entrusted Jerwood Arts to take forward practically to deliver the fund.

The Wolfson Foundation’s aim is to support civil society by investing in excellent projects in science, health, heritage, humanities and the arts. Established in 1973, the Linbury Trust supports a wide variety of compelling and exciting projects across the world in the fields of arts, heritage and culture; the environment; and social and medical welfare.

The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation aims to improve the natural world, secure a fairer future and strengthen the bonds in communities in the UK. Jerwood Arts is the leading independent funder dedicated to supporting UK artists, curators and producers to develop and thrive.

Together, they hope to support a generation of visionary ideas that can mark a new beginning for live work in the UK.

There’s huge value in having a diversity of funders with different aims and ways of doing things. But there's also something really valuable about funders recognising where we do align and have a shared interest or ambition.

Lilli Geissendorfer
Director, Jerwood Arts

How to get involved

To find out more, contact Jerwood Arts.

Who's involved

The Live Work Fund is a collaboration between Jerwood Arts, Wolfson Foundation, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and The Linbury Trust.

Learning and Resources

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