Green Visual Arts Guide launched at Frieze Art Fair
Today saw the launch of the Green Visual Arts Guide at Frieze Art Fair. The guide was official launched by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, Matthew Slotover, Co-director of Frieze Art Fair, and Sir Nick Serota, Director of Tate.
Julie's Bicycle was commissioned to produce the Green Visual Arts Guide by Frieze Art Fair on behalf of the Mayor of London.
DOWNLOAD the Green Visual Arts Guide
The JB team left to right: Catherine Langabeer, Helen Heathfield, Christina Tsiarta, Alison Tickell, Catherine Bottrill, Sholeh Johnston and Sian Alexander.
The Mayor has set a target for London to reduce emissions by 60 per cent by 2025 and the new guide gives practical information tailored specifically for the visual arts, highlighting how the sector can cut its carbon emissions and in the process save money.
Straightforward advice contained in the guide includes: saving energy through efficiency measures such as LED lighting and installation of insulation; using renewable energy; increasing recycling and composting and reducing the amount of waste sent to landfill; and saving water. The Guide also measures the impact of audience travel and provides reduction advice - through switching to public transport, walking and cycling.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said: 'I can't think of a better place than the Frieze Art Fair to launch our green guide for the arts world. This provides excellent, practical advice on how to save energy and therefore cash, which is invaluable at a time when, as individuals and organisations, we all need to tighten our belts. By greening 42 of our own GLA buildings with energy efficient gizmos we have saved over £1 million.
Matthew Slotover, Co-Director, Frieze Art Fair, said: 'Frieze was delighted to co-ordinate this Green Visual Arts Guide for the Mayor. Working with Julie's Bicycle, the authors of the guide, we have been tracking the fair's carbon emissions since 2007. This year we have been able to achieve 60 per cent reductions thanks to changing our energy source from diesel to re-used vegetable oil biofuel.'
Nicholas Serota, Director, Tate, said: 'We have a responsibility to work together to reduce the energy load for caring, showing and lending our Collections, and the Green Guide to the Visual Arts brings together the expertise and research already undertaken by organisations and artists. Tate has already made good progress in reducing the emissions from its energy use in buildings and is leading in research to revise protocol for more sustainable gallery environmental conditions. This excellent booklet will provide invaluable advice for others and set the benchmark for future practice and developments.'
Left to right: Sir Nick Serota, the Chairman of Deutche Bank, Boris Jonson, Matthew Slotover
The visual arts sector employs 8200 people in the capital, contributing £827 million of gross value to the UK economy; it also generates 220,442 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year. This is the fourth guide in the Mayor's series of Creative Industry Green Guides.
Data drawn from over a thousand organisations contributed to the preparation of the Green Visual Arts Guide. Packed with practical advice, it includes case studies of some of the many eco initiatives already taking place. They include:
- The National Portrait Gallery has reduced electricity consumption for lighting by 68 per cent by switching to LED lights
- Camden Arts Centre has reduced waste to landfill by 25 per cent, their fuel bills by 10 per cent and whose staff now either walk, cycle or use public transport to get to work
The Green Visual Arts Guide is part of a series of Creative Industry Green Guides which cover London;s theatre, film and music industries. These set out how organisations can save hundreds of tonnes of CO2 and cash, such as:
- Theatre: the National Theatre saved £100,000 by switching to LED lighting, equating to 30 tonnes of CO2 per year.
- Music: the music industry is working towards switching from plastic to card CD packaging, which will save 90 per cent of emissions.
- Film: Pinewood Studios scheme to build international streetscapes on site, reducing emissions by around 77 per cent
INDUSTRY COMMENT AND ENDORSEMENT
Alessio Anotniolli, Director of Gasworks and Triangle Arts Trust: 'As an organisation operating on an international scale and working with members of a world-wide network, Gasworks needs to develop strategies for supporting artists and disseminating their work while being mindful of its impact on the environment. We hope this study will support us in developing alternative tactics for our activities.'
Anita Zabludowicz: 'The Zabludowicz Collection is committed to being a model of best practice not only in the conservation of artworks but also in their exhibition. We are constantly aware of the issue of waste, from packing materials to shipping, our whole team tries to keep it down to a minimum. We have tried to make our systems as efficient as possible, when we founded our project space at 176 Prince of Wales Road we spent a minimum of funds on the renovation but ensured we had efficient heating and insulation. We have implemented paperless filing, use print on demand headed paper and in the exhibitions re-use whatever materials we can. They are small steps but we hope they make a difference.'
Cornelia Parker: 'I think it's essential with the rapid expansion of the contemporary art world globally and with more and more people travelling from one art fair, biennial or exhibition to the next, that we examine our behaviors more rigorously. I attempt to do this on a small scale in my studio by doing practical things like painting the pitched roof above my skylights white, to reflect more natural daylight into my studio. On a larger and more philosophical scale I have been questioning the amount I travel internationally both in accompanying works and also in terms of committing to exhibitions abroad. I’m on various advisory boards and try to raise green issues. It is amazing to see the impact of one small suggestion to the right person at the right time.'
Emma Kay: 'Artists' studios were the pioneers of urban regeneration but necessarily situated in low rent, short-lease buildings, they are usually unable to meet current environmental or energy efficiency standards. There are artists all over the world whose practice draws attention to climate change and alternative living. It's important that function follows ideology - that artists are able to make their workplaces fit for a sustainable future. Artist-run organisations are productive, sustainable and self-sufficient communities run on a shoestring who are eager to be greener.'
James Lingwood, Co-Director, Artangel: 'Artangel has always tried to give artists the opportunity to imagine the unimaginable and make us see and feel the world in which we live in a different way. We believe that their experimentation and exploration will change how the rest of us respond to vital issues like climate change. And by temporarily occupying found spaces for each project, Artangel aims to keep its own footprint as light as possible.'
Jenni Lomax, Director, Camden Arts Centre: 'Camden Arts Centre welcomes the publication of the Green Visual Arts Guide. As a publicly funded institution we are committed to utilising our funds in a sustainable and ecologically resourceful way. Our Environmental Policy takes a prominent place in all of our operations; from procurement to staff travel, from cleaning to energy consumption. We are dedicated to reducing our environmental impact, and are proud to be working with our partners across the visual arts sector to support environmental sustainability, through energy conservation, waste reduction, and recycling.'
Judith Knight, Director, Artsadmin: 'We know it is imperative to pay attention to our environmental impact, but it isn’t easy to change how we work overnight. Artsadmin is trying to take steps in the right direction, aware of obvious changes that can be made to improve building efficiency, but also the small but important changes we can make in our work as producers, which are more difficult to measure. We were delighted that in March 2010 Toynbee Studios was awarded a Green Tourism London Silver Award, reflecting the improvements we have already made in the building, the work of our Green Team, and the climate change-related arts projects we have produced to date, including the Two Degrees festival, which will take place again in 2011. It’s a good start, but there’s still a long way to go.'
Marcel Baettig, CEO, Bow Arts Trust: 'Being Green as is often the personal choice of the majority individual artists yet collectively the organisations who support them often find being green is cost prohibitive when trying to deliver affordable facilities for artists. Our attitude at Bow Arts Trust is a wholly practical one that starts with just one person and some realistic and good ideas and we help that grow. We may not be able to change our buildings or afford new roofs but we can change how we use them!'
Mark Wallinger: 'Artists are recyclers. Anyone who has ever shared a building with other artists will testify to the eternal return of discarded art matter. A skip outside a studio is a restless place of ceaseless exchange. Nothing is wasted - nothing needs be mined, smelted or burned; no-one coerced, brainwashed, exploited or oppressed. No greed or envy. Everything can be valuable because it is quite useless.'
Michaela Crimmin: 'The casual consumerism of the rich nations and the impact on the poor of the world are eliciting new insights to the challenges that Joseph Beuys, thirty-five years ago, addressed with such prescience. With five years intensive experience of directing the RSA Arts & Ecology Centre, I am left with not a shred of doubt that the imperative behind the Guide is of paramount importance. Change is difficult but many of us will be more persuaded by the practical guidance of Julie's Bicycle, the vision of artists and the lead of our arts organisations, than by hectoring or preaching.'
Polly Staple, Director, Chisenhale Gallery: 'The Green Visual Arts Guide is a very useful gauge of the positive Green-ness of the visual arts sector. It also serves as a constructive guide for future practice. As a charity and not-for-profit organisation, Chisenhale Gallery is used to being thrifty and being Green feeds directly into that economy as well as obviously ensuring we can all breathe better, for longer.'
Sandy Nairne, Director, National Portrait Gallery: 'Sustainability is a crucial issue for museums and galleries. At the National Portrait Gallery we have been working for some years to reduce our carbon footprint and to take forward creative thinking in this field. Most recently we have been pleased to collaborate with the National Gallery on trials of LED spotlights in the public galleries which can reduce power use by as much as 80%.'
Tessa Jackson, Chief Executive, Iniva (Institute of International Visual Arts): 'Iniva (Institute of International Visual Arts) is very aware that working internationally can have an impact on the environment and welcomes this Guide with its practical recommendations. We constantly need to adapt how we work as new information becomes available. Iniva runs its physical programme from Rivington Place, a new building which was designed specifically to be energy efficient. We are also committed to strengthening our virtual programme, using different digital platforms to reach our audiences and for them to reach us, from across the globe.'