Seeing Like A Fund

Live Book Tickets

In collaboration with Prins Claus Fund, we're excited to host Seeing Like a Fund: an interactive event with artists, researchers, members of the Prince Claus Fund team, and other funding organizations.

The funding application process is a two-way street: funders put forward distinct criteria, expectations, and desirable outcomes for applications, and artists and cultural practitioners present work that aims to match those.

Are these dynamics as linear and clear-cut as we might assume them to be? Information exchange between artists and funders travels in context-specific ways, which in turn prompts the question: within a funding application process, which kinds of knowledge are being amplified, and which types of expertise are perhaps being left out?

The event Seeing Like a Fund takes place at Kunstinstituut Melly between 2 and 5 pm on 6 June 2023 and is based on a simulation of a “typical” grant cycle—from the publication of an opportunity to the final evaluation of a project. Participants engage in a role-play to model the incentive structures behind key moments of information exchange in the grantmaking cycle, from application forms to informal conversations, and how these influence the way both funders and funded perceive the cultural development field.

During the simulation, characters—artist-applicants and various roles within a funding organization—are represented by small teams of participants. Participants are encouraged to play as characters that do not represent their real-life experiences. The object of the simulation is not to “win” by receiving funding or allocating it, but to pay careful attention to the way that the systems of funding structure determine what can and cannot be communicated, and what kinds of knowledge are amplified, repressed, or distorted.

An invited group of artists, funders, and researchers will participate in Seeing Like a Fund.