UCL Institute for Global Prosperity


Painting connections: call for proposals

23 June 2016

Ana Bleahu, Hackney Wick, Global Citizenship

The Painting Connections project is looking for artists to produce work on the theme of “the sharing economy” for an exhibition in Hackney Wick at the end of July. The works, preferably from artists based in Hackney Wick and Fish Island (HWFI), or with a strong track record of working and collaborating with the HWFI creative community, will respond to research produced by the Painting Connections project on the topic of the Sharing Economy within the area. We expect to award up to three commissions of £500, with work to be delivered and exhibited in July. Applicants should read the full tender document (below, and downloadable here as a pdf) and submit a short application using the pro forma or plain text document. Any queries, and the submission, should be addressed to Martin Zaltz Austwick at m.austwick@ucl.ac.uk.

Painting Connections is a UCL research project which has used interviews, online surveys and sharing diaries to explore the sharing economy in HWFI, and how it benefits the creative community within the area. Since Winter 2015, we’ve worked with citizen scientists from Creative Wick and Affordable Wick, local community groups supporting the creative and business community in the area. The summer exhibition represents the culmination of our pilot phase of research in the vibrant and unique community.

Painting Connections is based in CASA, the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis in the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment, partnered with the Institute for Global Prosperity and the Institute for Sustainable Resources, with citizen scientists from Creative Wick and Affordable Wick. The project is funded in part by the UCL Grand Challenges Small Grants Scheme under their Sustainable Cities theme, with events funding by UCL’s Public and Cultural Engagement department in partnership with the Forum for Future London.


This document is also available as a pdf; the pro forma can be downloaded from here.

Call for proposals

Painting Connections: Sharing Economies in the Creative Wick
Call for proposals

1. Introduction

This tender process is part of a University College London (UCL) research project called Painting connections: sharing economies in the creative Wick. As part of the project, we are delivering an exhibition showcasing not only project outcomes and discoveries, but also local artists’ responses to the research.

Painting connections focuses on Hackney Wick and Fish Island (HWFI): an area with one of the densest concentrations of creative and cultural industry workers in Europe. The LLDC and other policy-makers have highlighted the creative and cultural industries (CCIs) in HWFI as a source of potential for a sustainable local economy, but has also recognised their vulnerability in the face of regeneration. The community of creative and cultural workers manifests a flourishing sharing economy - sharing space, resources, knowledge and skills - largely on an informal, non-monetised basis. This sharing economy has allowed the CCIs of Hackney Wick to show resilience to external pressures.

2. Project concept and themes

In the project we have been exploring the sharing / collaborative economies at play in the unique HWFI creative local community as part of a pilot study on population, space and place.

We have been collecting data so that we can learn where, what and how residents and workers in the area participate in the sharing economy and creation of a sustainable, more prosperous community. To this end, we ask for art works that interpret in their own way the connections in a sharing economy, especially from those working in the HWFI area. Examples of sharing behaviour can be found in the Annex to this document.

3. Budget

We are inviting applications up to a value of £500 (including materials) and encourage the use of recycled/reclaimed materials as well as digital works. We expect to fund up to three pieces.

We may be able to utilise e.g. UCL projectors and/or screens for the presentation of digital art as part of the exhibition; please outline your requirements in your application.

4. Timetable

Tenders must be received by midnight BST on June 22nd.
Decisions will be made by June 30.
Projects must be finalized by July 21 for exclusive delivery to the exhibition in the week commencing July 25, 2016.

5. Requirements

The works may be used as part of the artist’s portfolio, however UCL will retain the commissioned work (or representations thereof), and rights to display it for research dissemination and outreach purposes. If this raises any concerns, please contact m.austwick@ucl.ac.uk

6. Tender responses

Tenders must be received in writing, using the provided pro forma, or plain text document containing the same information, accompanied by a 1-2 page CV of the main applicant by midnight BST on June 22nd, 2016. Links to images or descriptions of previous work are strongly encouraged.

Please use the subject line “Painting Connections Tender” and email to: m.austwick@ucl.ac.uk ; or post to: Martin Zaltz Austwick, CASA, 90 Tottenham Court Road, London W1T 4TJ.

Shortlisted candidates may be contacted between June 22nd and June 30th for further information: please ensure you have given us relevant contact details.

7. About us

The Painting Connections team is drawn from the Institute for Sustainable Resources, the Institute of Global Prosperity, and the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at the Bartlett Faculty for the Built Environment at UCL, and from members of Creative Wick and Affordable Wick. The project is led by Martin Zaltz Austwick from the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis and is funded by the UCL Grand Challenges Sustainable Cities Small Grants Scheme, and the UCL Public and Cultural Engagement department in partnership with the Forum for Future London.

Painting Connections Application Pro Forma (see separate word document for editable version, or submit this information as a text file)

Personal Details
Work Address:

Total Budget required (max £500):
Describe the artwork(s) you would like to create; explain the medium as well as themes and ideas (max. 250 words):

How will your budget be spent? Make it clear the costs associated with your time, and costs associated with any materials you need to purchase; up to a maximum of £500.

What other materials/support will you need to deliver your artwork for exhibition (for example – screens or projectors, moving artwork to and from the location):

Additional Comments or Questions:

Send completed forms to Martin Austwick at m.austwick@ucl.ac.uk by midnight on June 22nd 2016. or post to: Martin Zaltz Austwick, CASA, 90 Tottenham Court Road, London W1T 4TJ. Enquiries before that date are welcomed at the above address.


Those artists commissioned will have access to selected with research materials from the project, including maps, academic writing (if desired), analysis of interview transcripts and selected quotations.

Interview Excerpts

Living here, I don’t spend a lot of money.

[Sharing] is a great way to connect different types of people

I always felt, in London, a bit disconnected… [sharing] is the heart, the soul of Hackney Wick.
It’s why I’m here.

I have problems living in a concrete jungle.

I haven’t been to other communities which function similarly.

It’s nature to share, human nature to care about other humans…

If I don’t need it, I’ll share it.

[Commercialism] is the opposite of the Sharing Economy; [it’s] the greedy capitalist economy, which is the downfall of the human race.

You need to trust the people around you, or you won’t be happy.

[Creative] people are more open - when people of a similar mindset find themselves in Hackney Wick, they want to share.

[I] Don’t think [the creative community] exists as much as it used to… the rent’s too expensive.

Uber, Air BnB are just [taking advantage of the] sharing economy

Acknowledging your own limits, and realising that the people might be able to help you… it’s easier when they’re around the corner

[The Sharing Economy, and the HWFI sense of community] makes people’s lives better, and hopefully radiate[s] to outside Hackney Wick.

Image credit: Ana Bleahu