Spark - Call for companies for 2019

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Would you like your business to be part of Spark 2019?

Spark is programme aimed at companies who are interested in collaborating with artists and promoting creativity within their organisation. Leitrim County Council Arts Office and Local Enterprise Office Leitrim are now looking for a business in Leitrim that would like to participate in the 2019 programme. Once selected we will work with management to investigate the needs of the company and determine opportunities and approaches that an artist could take which would positively impact on the copmany. We will then recruit a suitable artist to work with the company in response to the needs identified.

Previous participants have included The Bush Hotel; Leitrim Organic Centre; Cafe Lounge; Leitrim Association for People with Disabilities; the Leitrim Observer; The Hive, Mohill Enterprise Centre; Prior PLM Medical and currently Leitrim County Council itself.

The programme provides the artist with the opportunity to make work inspired by the company; to explore different methods of working, new influences, and the opportunity to produce art in a unique context. While applicant artists will have presented a project proposal in response to the expressed needs of the copmany, there are no pre-determined outcomes in the early stages of the residency. Instead the artist is first expected to engage with the company and its staff, learning about its environment and work practices and to make work that is influenced and inspired by this environment. Quite naturally, this will be clearly influenced by the adopted environment, thus providing a greater interest and involvement in the work from staff and clients/customers. As well as making work, the artist can develop a programme which may point to new different creative and innovative paths for the company, and serve as a catalyst for new thinking. Working with management and staff, they may consider areas where benefit to the company could accrue such as developments within existing or new products or services; developments within staff interrelations; adoption of new attitudes towards creativity in the workplace or adoption of new attitudes towards service users, customers or the wider society.

The project is divided into two phases...

STAGE 1
In the first stage, the artist is invited to spend approximately 15 days at the company within a two-month period. During this stage, the artist is not necessarily expected to make artworks, rather the objective is to engage with staff, to gain an insight and understanding of what the company does and to reflect on that from the artist’s unique perspective. At the end of this period, the artist presents the results of their research to staff and management. This could include new work, but is more likely to be documentation of the process undertaken and the learning from it, and ideas for the next stage. At this point, if both the artist and company wish to progress these ideas, the artist and company can together develop that proposal for a longer project which will have more tangible results lasting 35 days spanning up to five months.

STAGE 2
In the second stage, the artist has the capacity to develop new work that could be substantial in its ambition or undertake a much more detailed project which explores new and different creative and innovative paths, or serve as a catalyst for reflection and new thinking within the company. It is important that the entire residency, particularly the second stage, should serve to benefit both the artist and the company, and how each party hopes to gain from it should be evident in the proposal.

If you manage a private or public business in Leitrim and would like to get involved in Spark, please contact the arts office and let us know. For further information, please contact Christine Kelly at Leitrim County Council Arts Office on 071 96 21694 or email ckelly@leitrimcoco.ie.

Spark responds directly from within a company, developing a platform for creative collaboration appropriate to that context, providing alternatives to the current view, and making connections and linkages where they may not have existed previously. Spark responds directly from within a company, developing a platform for creative collaboration appropriate to that context, providing alternatives to the current view, and making connections and linkages where they may not have existed previously. The programme is important for developing ideas about creativity and the exchange carries equal benefit for both the artist and the company.

 

What businesses have said about SPARK...

 
‘Our Company was fortunate to have had the opportunity to participate in the Spark Program. It was an uplifting, fun and mutually beneficial experience for everyone involved - myself, the artist, our employees and customers. The business outcomes were very positive; we differentiated ourselves as a business with an innovative and resourceful ethos in addition to the positive competitive marketing advantage derived.  I would urge every business to seriously consider getting involved.’

Joseph Dolan, Managing Director, The Bush Hotel.

 
"The 2015 SPARK programme at the Mohill Enterprise Centre provided creative inspiration for staff, students and customers facilitated by the Artist in residence Leo Scarff. The Enterprise Centre plans to continue to collaborate with the creative sector throughout Leitrim to improve, innovate and inspire local businesses."

John Mannion, Manager, Mohill Enterprise Centre & Mohill Computer Training

 
"The Involvement of the Leitrim Association of People with Disabilities in the Spark project gave us new energy and challenged us to look at what we do for members. It also reflected back to us the positive benefits we bring to members and the wider community."

Rosleen Kielty, Manager, LAPWD

 

Spark is funded by Leitrim County Council and Leitrim Local Enterprise Office with the support of the Arts Council.

 

  • Ireland Structural and Investment Funds
  • EU European Regional Development Fund