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Image courtesy of Beverley Heath-Hoyland, Estate of John Hoyland. Photographed by Brian Benson for DACS © Brian Benson, 2016


'If you are planning on becoming a famous, successful artist, archive everything because you’ll never know what will come in handy – from the grandest masterwork to the smallest postcard. If you don’t become famous there’s always recycling…!'  Grayson Perry

Art360 Foundation, an independent charity that empowers artists and artists’ estates to manage and protect artworks for future generations, is launching a free app designed to make archiving and cultural preservation skills available to all.

The Art360 app was produced with the support of the artists’ rights management organisation, DACS, and is a motivational tool for artists of all disciplines and at any career stage. In creating the app, Art360 Foundation drew on research it has undertaken into how UK artists and estates manage archives. Among its key findings were that 81% of artists have never worked with a conservator or archivist and that 71% were not aware of the conservation status of their archive.

Says Mark Waugh, Director of Art360 Foundation:

‘Archiving can be a daunting prospect and we hope this app will encourage artists and estates to take their first steps, or offer valuable support for those who have already started.

‘A well-managed archive allows artists to preserve artworks and materials, as well as allowing artists and estates to shape the narrative of their work or collections. Good archiving processes also provide insights into artistic practice for curators, art historians and cultural institutions.

‘As Art360 has demonstrated, with the right tools archiving is possible for any artist or estate; no matter the stage of their career or size of estate.’

The app is simple to use and breaks the process of archiving into manageable stages. It offers a step-by-step guide on the effective management of physical and digital assets, with advice on how these can be maintained and protected, enabling artists to determine a method and pace that suits them. Using checklists and videos with professional archivists, it guides the user through essential practices and encourages progress onto the next stage. The app will be available from the App Store and Google Play.

Says Gilane Tawadros, Chief Executive at DACS:

‘DACS is proud to have supported the development of the Art360 archiving app. At a time when public funding for the arts and cultural conservation is facing significant cuts, we believe it is vital to provide practical support to all artists and estates, so they can sustain their work. 

‘We want to demystify the process of archiving; empowering artists to shape the stories about their art, and their cultural contribution. Usually, this role falls to academics and cultural institutions. We believe in challenging this dynamic, by giving artists the tools to transform their legacy themselves.'

The Art360 app will be launched at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, on Monday 15 October 2018. The event will include insights from artists Sonia Boyce MBE RA and Rose English, as well as an opening address by the Royal Academy’s President, Christopher Le Brun PRA.

Sonia Boyce, who recently appeared in the BBC film Whoever Heard of a Black Artist: Britain’s Hidden Art History, following her work on the Black Artists and Modernism research project, will speak of the importance of archives to identity and cultural memory. 

Sonia Boyce says: ‘Archives play an essential role in how future generations understand the work of British artists and their contribution to our wider culture. By supporting and encouraging artists to manage their archives effectively, Art360 Foundation is playing an invaluable role in safeguarding Britain’s shared cultural memory.’

Rose English, known for her work in performance, theatre, dance and film, will speak about her experience going through the Art360 archiving project and the impact it has had on her individual practice.

Rose English says: ‘What’s important to me about the archive is that it contains the vestige of the idea, even if it’s the ephemeral moment where all those things are in the air together… There’s also the element of documentation that exists in the archive... This can give rise to the sense of the event, the context the event happened in, and the evidence of the idea.’

About Art360 Foundation 

Art360 Foundation was established in 2015 to safeguard at-risk cultural assets for present and future generations. It seeks to promote archive management, while increasing public understanding of the value that contemporary and modern art brings to culture and society. The foundation invests in the skills and knowledge of artists and estates through a programme of education, research and events.

Art360 Foundation works with and brings together the shared expertise of the Art Fund, DACS, The Henry Moore Foundation, The National Archives and Arts Council England. In the last three years, Art360 Foundation has worked with 100 British artists and estates, encompassing a diverse range of practices, generations and backgrounds, carrying out extensive research into how UK artists and estates manage archives. This revealed a critical gap in the national provision of support and infrastructure. With funding from Arts Council England via the National Lottery, bursaries were given to artists and artists’ estates to fill this gap.

The money is used for a range of approved expert services, including legal advice, tax planning, valuation of assets, archive management, digitisation and legacy planning. In its first phase, the project awarded bursaries of £6,000 to 33 artists, including David Batchelor, Cathy de Monchaux, Richard Billingham and Rose English, and the estates of Maggie Evans, John Latham and Austin Wright.

Contact Information: 

For further information about Art360 Foundation, please contact:

Gemma Scotcher, Head of Communications, DACS

t: + 44 (0) 20 75 53 90 75