In 2014 HUTT opened with the intention of giving opportunity to emerging artists, initially reviving a small grant from Nottingham Trent University’s and taking up residence in the dilapidated ground floor and basement of a small house attached to a Victorian-era primary school in Nottingham, UK. This little corner of the school, by this point home to artist led initiative Primary, served as HUTT’s home for 4 years with the gallery closing in the Summer of 2018. During the galleries four year run, hosting around 50 artists in various events and exhibitions, HUTT received a grand total of £4000 in funding with expenses running at around £2000 per annum, the short fall coming from the pockets of those running it. As such HUTT has never been in a position to pay its artists but have instead relied on an economy based on in-kind transactions, favours, gifts, luck and the kindness and generosity of those we have worked with. This couldn’t be maintained forever however and we now move into a new phase in our activity, involving us moving from our static gallery to working by invitation and experimenting more with digital platforms in presentation of artwork and publishing. This will make it a little more tricky to offer our home to visiting artists. It takes away the commodity of space which we can, and by proxy those we work with, do with as they please. With the directors now being based in London and Gothenburg takes us out of the local network in Nottingham and away from our links with Nottingham Trent University. With this we must start to reconsider how we are operating with those we work with; maintaining the connections we have to the best of our ability, whilst building new relationships in new locals. This in mind, we wanted to initiate a research project to explore how our “best practice” can shift to maintain a good working relationship collaborators. That leads us to this point, an invitation out of the blue to apply for the Art Licks Weekend 2018, offering a well timed nudge to start pursuing these goals of fairness, community, generosity and opportunity. Perhaps more importantly, it provides a chance to pursue them in the open, with the artistic community, in concert with those we have worked with and those we hope to work with in the future, and make that information and process available to others.
Ephemeral Care is intended as an occasional journal which we will use to present the progress and try to initiate new questions within our research on ethics within artist organised. We aim to talk to as many people as possible, get as many interesting and enlightening texts as possible and also mould our approach as we go along, in line with our findings.
Thanks for reading and hope you enjoy the rest.
Connor and Joe
Connor Brazier & Joe Rowley - 2018
Ephemeral Care focuses on ethics, practice and strategies in artist-led and self-organised projects.