Frequently asked DIY questions

How much are the DIY awards and how many projects will be supported?

We expect to support around 20-25 DIY projects with awards of £1,500 each. The award is expected to cover the lead artists' fees, expenses and direct costs for running the project.

What about costs for participant artists?

Wherever possible artists’ participation in DIY projects should be free. Lead artists are encouraged to think about the needs of their participants when drawing up a budget, and many of lead artists allocate some of their £1,500 award budget to help with participant expenses. However, with projects taking place all over the country, and transport costs going up all the time, we are still some way off being able to completely cover all the costs of taking part in a DIY. In recognition of this, and as a gesture of our commitment to making DIYs as accessible as possible, in 2018 we are trialling a new ‘top-up fund’ for participant expenses. Up to an additional £100 will be available to every project (via the lead artist) in order to help participants cover travel, accommodation or other access costs. We realise that this is unlikely to cover every expense – some participants may still have to pay something, and lead artists are still encouraged to consider participant expenses within their main budget – but we hope this extra money will help open up the DIY programme to a greater number of artists.

What sort of project can I propose for DIY?

We are seeking proposals from artists for adventurous and possibly outlandish projects that respond to issues impacting on artists' practices. The development of a Live Art practice is as much about the exploration of ideas and experiences as training in skills and techniques -- we are therefore not seeking proposals for training programmes or masterclasses in any conventional sense but for projects that explore interesting ideas through interesting methodologies. Some DIYs have specific briefs devised by DIY partner organisations that artists are invited to respond to, others are open to any idea. 

The lead artist(s) running the DIY should gain as much from the experience as the participants.

As part of all DIY proposals we expect you to identify the kinds of artists who will participate and how you will select them. We want to know how your project will contribute to the artistic and/or professional development of the participants as well as your own practice.

Please see the documentation from last year's DIY projects for more information. 

Who can propose DIY projects?
We accept applications from individual artists or groups of artists. We welcome applications from artists who have previously applied, run or participated in DIY projects. Applications can be made from artists based outside the UK. However, all expenses would need to be covered by the award and we are reluctant to support applications that spend a large proportion of the budget on lead artist travel/accommodation.

When would my DIY project have to take place?
Your DIY project must take place between July and November 2018. The length of your project should be proposed by you. There is no set minimum or maximum duration. Your project can last anytime from one day to a few months. If your project is more than a couple of days we suggest running it later on in the year to give participants as much notice as possible. You should also be available to attend the DIY Picnic – an afternoon of presentations, discussion and feedback with other DIY project leaders, participants and invited guests. This will take place on Saturday 1 December 2018 in London.

Where would my DIY have to take place?

Once the DIY programme has been selected, every DIY project is matched with a partner organisation, and we will almost always ask you to deliver your DIY in the venue, area or region where your partner is based. It is useful to think about the kind of location your project needs when you apply (do you need a rehearsal space, a swimming pool, a pub, a forest?) as this will help us match you with a suitable organisation.

Do I need to budget for renting a space?

The DIY scheme is supported by a range of partner organisations around the country, and each DIY project will be connected to one or more of these organisations. Some are large and well-resourced, with workshop and performance spaces, while others might be run on a shoestring out of someone’s kitchen. If your DIY project requires a workshop space, it is prudent to allocate some of your budget towards rental costs. Partners who have a suitable space may be able to offer their space to you for free or at an affordable rate; other partners who do not have their own venue will be on hand to help you find local, reasonably-priced space to work. Please do not assume that all of your venue needs can be met by the partner organisation.

How do DIY artists work with their partner organisation?

By the time the DIY projects are selected each spring, that year’s partner organisations have already been working with LADA for several months, committing money, time and resources to the programme. Once a project is matched with the partner organisation, they will become one of your key contacts for its delivery (alongside LADA) and will help you confirm a date, location and other things you need to make the DIY go brilliantly. This might mean introducing you to key people and resources in their area, helping you find cheap places to stay, taking delivery of materials or hosting a sharing. Every project is different so every partner will help in slightly different ways. One thing they will certainly do is help spread the word about the DIY opportunity to local artists who might want to apply to take part.

How do artists report back on their DIY experiences?

DIY project leaders are required to submit documentation of their experience. This involves a series of short, open questions, accompanied by 10 images. We actively encourage video documentation and reflection, but also welcome drawings, performance relics, participant feedback and more. We will distribute more information regarding the report after 2018's projects have been selected.

Can you help develop my proposal?

DIY encourages artists to self determine and run their own projects. However, we are happy to discuss your proposal with you as you work on it. Project proposals can also be developed in collaboration with the DIY partner organisations in those regions – in some cases, partners have provided a brief on the kind of thing they’re particularly interested in. Please contact one of the DIY partner organisations listed in the Call for Proposals if you would like to discuss a project idea in advance of submitting a proposal. We are sorry we cannot meet in person to discuss proposals, but are very happy to make telephone appointments.

What should I put in my budget?

We expect the artist(s) organising the project to be paid a fee for the time they contribute to the project. Other budget items may include transport, materials, tickets for events, space hire, guest speakers' fees, participant travel bursaries, etc. The fee and expenses should be covered by the £1,500 DIY award. Further participant expenses can be covered by the additional £100 top-up fund (see above) if required.

How do I apply for DIY?

DIY 15: 2018 is accepting proposals until 22 March 2018. Follow the 'apply' link on the full Call for Proposals to submit your idea.

Can I send supporting materials with my application?

Supporting material is not required, however you can send weblinks and a CV to support your proposal via the application form. You must also complete the monitoring questions. Your application will not be eligible without the completed monitoring questions.

Who will make the decision about which projects are funded and how will they decide?

Selections will be made by representatives of LADA and the DIY partner organisations.

The criteria for selection includes:

  • The relevance of the proposal to the aims of the DIY initiative.
  • If appropriate, the relevance of the proposal to one of the specific project opportunities.
  • The relevance of the proposal to Live Art practice and artists.
  • The extent to which the proposal shows clear artistic direction and vision.
  • The degree to which the proposal will contribute to the professional development of artists and regions. This will include the viability of locating projects in certain regions.
  • The viability of the proposal.
  • The ability of the applicant to achieve the stated aims of their proposal.

It is our intention to support a range of forms of projects which together represent a coherent national programme. The final decision on which projects to fund will therefore by informed by this and a project may be prioritised over another because of the alternative vision for professional development that it offers. All decisions will be notified by email. Complaints and appeals in relation to DIY applications are undertaken under the Complaints and Appeals Procedure of the Live Art Development Agency.

What happens if my proposal is selected?

After the selection process, successful applicants will be invited to discuss their projects and plans with their DIY partner organisation in order to develop the shape and location of the projects. Then, lead artists will have a short time (around 1 week) in which to create image and text for a participant callout. LADA and the partner organisation are available to help with this.

How will the award be paid?

We can pay £1,300 in advance (as soon as selection is confirmed), and pay the final £200 on receipt of documentation and short evaluation report. The £100 top-up for participant expenses can be paid at any time between June and November, as it is needed. All payments require an invoice (to include BACS details for electronic payment).

For more advice 

For general DIY advice, please email Megan at the Live Art Development Agency. Contact details for specific organisational briefs are listed on the Call for Proposals.


Part of DIY 14: 2017 - Call for Proposals