23rd May 2019

(Title taken from The Knife – You Make Me Like Charity)

This series of meetings with invited guest speakers will look at the charitable model in the arts and call into question it’s assumptions about patronisation and beneficiaries. Many non-profit art galleries and organisations, including artist-run spaces, operate as charities. We will be learning about co-operatives as an alternative form of organising and thinking how the co-operative model could be incorporated into the organisations we work in. 

Meeting #1: Co-operation vs patronisation 

The first session will take the shape of an informal presentation followed by discussion with Siôn Whellens. Siôn is a member of Calverts a print and design cooperative established in 1977. He also operates as Principle Six which advocates for co-operatives and supports the development of new co-operatives. Some background reading for the session can be found here.

Siôn Whellens is a Vice President of CECOP, the European network of cooperatives in industry and services. His working life has been in worker cooperatives in the graphic design and printing industries. Siôn is also a cooperative organiser and advocate with the Principle Six partnership. He specialises in advising community and worker worker coop startups, and coop business conversions. Siôn has also served as a Director at Co-operatives UK, Cooperative and Community Finance and Cooperatives London.

Tommie Introna is a member of Black Shuck – a non-profit co-operative that produces moving image, audio and digital projects. https://blackshuck.co/