Cookies information uses cookies to make the site simpler. Find out more about the cookies we use.

Close banner

New Public Art Strategy will help Exeter become a thriving city of culture

Published: 12 October 2022

New Public Art Strategy will help Exeter become a thriving city of culture Vhils / Alexandre Farto Street art in Exeter

A new Public Art Strategy aimed at boosting Exeter’s ambition to become a leading city of culture has been approved by councillors.

The Strategy proposes that all art for the city, including public art, should meet the key criteria of quality, inclusion and sustainability, and that a shared set of values be adopted by all partners to foster positive collaboration.

It has been drafted by Art Work Exeter and commissioned by Exeter City Council, in partnership with the University of Exeter and Exeter Culture, to make the most of future public art opportunities in a growing city.

Art Work Exeter consulted with artists and makers, curators and commissioners, consultants and specialists, community groups and individuals from across the city and beyond.

The Strategy sets out new ways of thinking about public art in the city and recognises the need for greater coherence and transparency around current practices.

Exeter’s aspiration to be a City of Culture is set out in the City Council’s new Corporate Plan. It says Exeter will innovate and lead in the area of environment, wellbeing, cultural literacy, creative making and heritage innovation to build a living city where everyone thrives.

City Council Deputy Leader Cllr Laura Wright, Lead Councillor for Culture, said: “Culture is so important to Exeter and is a key priority for the Council and its partners as the city expands in the future.

“Public art plays a key role in helping to define places and gives people a sense of pride in their community and their city. The Public Art Strategy for Exeter sets out how we can best achieve this, and I very much welcome that its recommendations can now start to be implemented.”

A report presented to the Council’s Executive this week states that public art has been recognised as an opportunity and an important platform for artists. It is fundamental to effective place-making and plays a key role in setting out a city’s intentions and identity.

The Strategy recognises that early stage collaboration makes it more likely that artwork will be more connected to place, and enables opportunities for creative engagement with the relevant community in the project’s design and development.

This will be crucial as Exeter expands with new neighbourhoods and communities in the years ahead.

The report recognises that Public Art, in essence, is creative work sited in the public realm, in places and spaces that are freely accessible to everyone and can be either permanent or temporary.

It can include visual arts such as murals and street art, sculpture, video, sonic and digital media, as well as performance, music and theatre. It can be a soundscape, a light work, a landscape intervention or an interactive installation, street furniture or an architectural statement.

The Public Art Strategy can be read on the Council’s website.

Share this page on...