Working visual artists are an integral component of local, regional and national culture, and an important part of the UK’s creative and cultural economy.
Research over the last ten years has demonstrated a sustained demand by visual artists for affordable studio space throughout the UK. Affordable studio providers make a vital contribution to the development and success of the visual arts by providing low-cost studio space to artists, who are generally on low incomes. Rents are, on average, one third of open market prices.
In this way, affordable studios provide a substantial subsidy to the visual arts economy. If we value art, we must value artists. NFASP believes if artists are to make excellent work and to thrive as creative practitioners, they need access to good quality facilities at a price they can afford.
Thousands of artists need secure, affordable, accessible and well-managed facilities in order to research and produce high-quality work and to make their work and skills available to culture, communities and the economy.
There are affordable artists' studios throughout the UK, located in rural areas as well as in towns and cities, and with a significant presence in London (60 per cent of total studio space). According to the 2010 NFASP Survey, there are now at least 144 studio organisations and groups managing 252 buildings, and providing 5,450 studios for 7,250 artists in the UK. These organisations share a core commitment to providing space for artists to research, experiment and make work, and they represent a diverse range of approaches to workspace provision.