Seems like another bout of short-sightedness from those who hold the purse strings. It takes years to build up an organisation like Waygood - and one silly funding decision to destroy a lot of hard work. I know how much effort it takes to create buildings, and it seems very unfair that you won’t be able to inhabit the building you’ve put so much good work into.
I run BV Studios, newly established in Bristol. Withdrawing Waygood’s funding at the final stage is seriously short-sighted and very difficult to understand…it shows a marked lack of joined-up thinking. BV Studios, thank goodness, exists entirely through the generosity of one business man and his vision to support artists in Bristol - relying on funding in today’s economic climate is a deeply worrying business. I fervently hope that ACE and/or your local council can be persuaded to see that continuing their support for Waygood would be of much greater benefit in the long run and a more intelligent and positive response to the current crisis.
This situation sounds really unfair, you especially deserve to occupy the new building after all the hardwork you’ve done to create it!
Thanks to you Waygood I got my first start at working in the arts!
You certainly have my best wishes,
Dear Waygood-artists, members and staff, when I heard of the serious trouble for the Waygood Gallery I was really shocked. Regarding your successful work since years on such a high level I can’t really believe it. Because of my work as an artist in different Countries I everytimes made the experience how well-known Waygood in the European-wide art-scene is. I really hope the heads of the Newcastle City Council becomes aware that a Metropolitan-Character of an area highly depends from an contemporary art-scene like it is represented, established and ongoing developed by Waygood. I like Newcastle very much. It is such a wonderful town! It should not become provincial! All the Best! Matthias Schamp
John O’Rourke - Lecturer / Course Leader of a Foundation Degree in Fine Art at Tyne Metropolitan College.
I’m an artist creating works to commission, with very little knowledge of Arts Council funding mechanisms. However, I do have positive experience of Waygood - mainly through my role as a 0.6 contracted Lecturer / Course Leader of a Foundation Degree in Fine Art at Tyne Metropolitan College. As an organisation, Waygood has my support. Jude Thomas, in particular, has been very helpful. Enhancing the student’s research for their Professional Studies module, she conducted a tour, showing them artists’ studio spaces as well as outlining Waygood’s plans for the future - a gallery and so forth. Her talk was excellent and the students (two have been involved in voluntary work experience there) were very appreciative of the morning spent with her.
Upon arriving in Newcastle from France in 2007, Waygood hit my map immediately as one of the main drivers in the magic of Newcastle, where a local, grassroots scene interfaced with an international scene in a mutually productive, organic way. I hope that this essential cultural identity of Newcastle will continue.
The Waygood, when it was still in the town centre, organised some really good
discussions. I still remember a meeting, which must have been in 2004 or 2005,
to discuss notions of ‘popular culture’ as part of the debate surrounding
Newcastle and Gateshead’s bid to be City of Culture. It brought together arts
practioners, public sector officers in relevant areas, and academics; the
debate was both wide-ranging and deep. Both the overall strategy of the
Waygood and its location make it an excellent place for this kind of
arts/politics discussion. And the Waygood management of that time was
evidently inventive and entrepreneurial in setting up such meetings.