Test, risk, change: Exploring democratic practice between young people, youth organisations and galleries

Nottingham Contemporary, Friday 10 March 2017, 10.45am-5.30pm. Free

Join Tate for a day of in-depth debate on how the youth and gallery sectors can work effectively together in turbulent social and political times to challenge inequalities and champion young people’s cultural participation.

'Test, Risk, Change' will include reflections on the realities of co-production between diverse groups of young people, arts and youth sector organisations and staff members. It will look at what four years of experiment and learning can tell about how two (art and youth) sectors can effectively work together. These insights have come from Circuit, a four-year national programme connecting 15-25 year olds to the arts in galleries and museums, working in partnership with the youth and cultural sectors. Circuit was formulated in response to the 2011 riots, while other social urgencies have shaped the creative energy of the programme.

Participants highlight different models of peer-led practice, and question how much autonomy can be afforded to young people who are not familiar with galleries. Drawing upon examples of practice in the youth and cultural sector, the event will ask: do ‘peer-led’ approaches work in hierarchical organisations? And how do young people learn through these semi-professional models? They will examine the agency of young people, and address the dynamics of organisational change.

Delegates are invited to pose questions, engage in open conversations, share expertise, and propose actions to advance future relationships.

The Tate Network hope to draw upon their collective experience to identify how to make their programmes more socially inclusive, politically relevant and creatively diverse. They also plan to think about how to meaningfully collaborate while cuts and policy changes are altering the landscape of national youth provision.

This is the first of a series of platforms for conversation hosted through Circuit in 2017 between the arts and youth sectors and young people, investigating what steps can be taken to engage with wider social justice agendas and to push for change within and beyond institutions.

The full programme and booking information can be found here.

Email circuit.conference@tate.org.uk for a place.


Circuit was led by Tate and funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. and involves Tate Modern and Tate Britain; Tate Liverpool; Tate St Ives and partners from the Plus Tate network: Firstsite, Colchester; MOSTYN, Llandudno; Nottingham Contemporary; Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester; and Wysing Arts Centre and Kettle’s Yard, Cambridgeshire.