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PROJECT Evaluation Report and Evaluation Toolbox

PROJECT - engaging artists in the built environment was a national funding scheme jointly supported by the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE) and Arts & Business (A&B). Public Art South West (PASW) worked in partnership with CABE and A&B to develop the scheme and was responsible for its management, It ran ras a two year pilot shceme from April 2004 to March 2006.

Comedia was commissioned by Public Art South West in July 2004 to make an independent evaluation of schemes funded by PROJECT, before any awards had been made. The research focused on the extent to which the mindset and working practice of those involved in each project – architects, planners, developers, urban designers, engineers and artists – changed as a consequence of the experience. Data was gathered on a 'before and after' basis from 36 participants in 12 projects. Several personal journals and detailed case studies were also included in the evaluation.

The evaluation asked four questions:

1   Did the people involved change their mindsets and/or working practices?

2   Has there been any impact on long term practice of the project players?

3   Has the involvement of artists made any demonstrable difference to projects?

4   Under what conditions does artist input have a positive effect and when does it not?

The findings of the evaluation can be summarised in two maxims:

  • Engagement of an artist from an early stage in a development project, in good circumstances, brings about a positive change in mindset and working practice among the other professionals involved.
  • When artists are working in a development milieu and expected to contribute their professional expertise and creativity, they should be engaged on the same terms as the other professionals involved.

An Evaluation Toolbox has been produced, in addition to the Evaluation Report, in order to share developing practice with others in the public art field.

Follow this link to the PROJECT website to download the Evaluation Report or the Evaluation Toolkit as Adobe Acrobat documents. Both are available free of charge.


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