Growth Project - Funding
One of the things that has always been difficult when it comes to funding for things like art projects or independently lead experiences is that funding and a viable mean of income is a much harder thing to place a pin in. There are so many deciding factors that could determine whether this model of business would be successful. To me, the first issue that stems from it is the general public interest, which may decline or increase as social views change. It isn't something like the hospitality industry. The design of that is that British culture will always place an emphasis on drinking as its own form of leisure. It is a constant that varies in success from business to business, as it is never going to really go away for as long as I can see it running. But art as a business model, has the danger of generating fluctuating results. Some days people might be more interested in certain topics of discussion and then some days people might just not come altogether. I think that to maintain the GROWTH Project from a social and cultural standpoint, there needs to be a commitment to constantly updating the appeal of project to fit with current events, especially from an art standpoint.
I think that one of the easiest gateways in to getting funding for this project would be to first reach directly out to the Kirklees Council. Nearly every town and city has some for of Arts Council that is there to make sure that its citizens are generating work to draw business to certain locations by engaging them of an intellectual level. So by contacting the local council and proposing to them what the project as a whole aims to and bring to the town centre, I think that would be one of the easiest ways in.
However, once the space has been obtained, it then becomes a question of how to maintain that. Since it is a space where artists would want to be able to showcase their work, the opportunity for artists to be able to rent out the space should be one of the main routes. As well as this, since we also want to use the space to be able to talk as well, there is also the way of using the additional rooms that we have in the building as therapy offices, which licensed therapists would also be able to book out. The difference between these two is that Artist renting might possibly come as one higher price for a set amount of time, whereas the therapy offices could come at cheaper rates but could be rented out more frequently on a monthly basis.
As well as this, the group also looked at partnering with Beans Bros. as an official business partner. Beans Bros. operate in the Yorkshire area, meaning we would be sourcing locally, as well as partnering with a company that would want to contribute to the local area as much as we do. By (in a sense) teaming up with them, we could look at implementing a coffee shop within the space. This would generate a steady flow of income for the project and would slowly feed into the funds in comparison to the renting, which would come in larger chunks. On top of that, by including the Beans Bros. as an official partner, two different companies are benefitting as a result of the GROWTH Project then.
A downside to projects like this though is that it does put too much money into one pot. You rent the space and you partner with a company. Say you don't get any artists coming in, you then don't get any people coming to view that art. Then no one will buy from the coffee shop. I think that if it succeeds then you have a system that works, but in the case that it doesn't, then it acts as chain, where one failure in the system ripples throughout the rest and then the project as a whole would not maintain a constant flow of money to be able to support itself. But it is the case of any business that this occurs. I think there just needs to be enough updating to the ideas that the project is trying to generate to keep that public interest from waning and the project should endure as a whole.