Tate, with agreement from government, will seek to appoint its first Trustee dedicated to bringing the views of the next generation to the highest level of Tate’s decision-making process.
Tate is also launching £5 exhibition tickets for 16 to 25 year olds as part of a new scheme called Tate Collective. It is the first free-to-join membership scheme for 16 to 25 year olds at a national UK museum and is open to people anywhere in the world to join online. Those who do can see any of Tate exhibitions for a fiver and also get discounts in Tate’s cafes and shops. They can also bring up to three friends to shows, each for £5.
These initiatives respond directly to Tate’s recent programmes and consultation with this age group who said the cost of living and higher education mean funds are squeezed and they want access to more affordable activities which they can enjoy with their friends. Museums and galleries also need to build stronger relationships with youth organisations, grow a more diverse workforce and provide a platform for relevant debates, such as identity and social issues.
Maria Balshaw, Director of Tate said at a press conference this morning that ‘We are acting on what 16 to 25 year olds say they want so that we can make the changes needed for future generations. Our sector should be shaped by their creative energy and their message to us is clear: arts institutions should plan ‘with’ not ‘for’ them. To do this it is important their voices are heard across the organisation, not just in niche programming. Recruiting a new Trustee – a cultural entrepreneur and digital native – will support this across Tate. And with Tate Collective, our exhibitions are made accessible to this younger generation.’
The research into what these audiences want from the sector is part of the legacy of Circuit, a four-year, Tate-led project supported by Paul Hamlyn Foundation, engaging 175,000 people under 25 in England and Wales who devised and produced festivals and events across a number of UK art galleries. Participants were asked how they wanted the sector to change to make it relevant for future generations.
Tate is also announcing today an online project Why Study Art? devised by collaborative practice They Are Here, which will ask the public for their views and culminate in posters for every secondary school in the UK. An annual careers fair for the arts will be held, and ongoing opportunities for access to information about careers in the arts provided, following the successful pilot event Routes In earlier this year at Tate Modern.
For schools, Tate will establish an annual ASSEMBLY day in April to welcome over 50 schools from across London’s boroughs in a takeover of the Blavatnik Building and Turbine Hall at Tate Modern. It is anticipated that over 1,500 pupils will take part in this year’s event.