Winter Greetings 2012

NASA Newsletter Winter 2012 – from Mission Control (NASA UK Steering Group)

Season’s Greetings to One and All!

May all your gigs be lovely and all your invoices paid on time.


Contents:  5 ways to help NASA UK this winter, What we did in 2012, Updates from NASA UK Steering Group, Starting this January on our website.

 5 ways to help develop NASA UK this winter!

  1. Visit the website and have a look around
  1. Visit the NASA UK facebook page, leave a comment, add a photo or just ‘Like’ us
  1. Tweet us some news at
  1. Send a picture/image/photo in high resolution to support our graphic design. So we can build some printable materials to promote NASA and you. Send a 5” x 7” (12.5cms x 18cms) or something similar or square at 300dpi to please. We have only previously asked for lower res images for web use, now we’d like to print some promo materials. (It can be the same image that you sent us already but at a printable resolution)
  1. Opt in (by doing nothing) or out of the NASA UK Members Maps. Please let us know if you don’t want to be listed. See below…

What we did in 2012

  • Attended North West Street Arts Gathering  – Xtrax Networking Meeting Nov 20th 2012, Manchester
  • Attended ISAN AGM Manchester Nov 2012
  • Attended British Arts Festival Association Nov 8th,  London
  • Attended The Great Outdoors, Oct, Machynlleth. Steering Group Meeting
  • Mintfest, Kendal, Cumbria. Steering Group Meeting
  • Continued working with Impossible Arts on FLOI-12 and FLOI’13
  • Attended Street Arts Winter Academy (SAWA 2) (An annual Pan European Network exploring Street Arts Education) March 2012 Winchester
  • Helped organise FLOI-12, Cumbria (NASA UK AGM and Members Meeting) and Steering Group Meeting
  • Recruited new members to NASA UK
  • Increased the size of the Steering Group
  • Worked on developing the options for a national archive for the outdoor arts and a London outdoor arts facility
  • Improved the website
  • Worked on our relationship with ISAN and with Arts Council England
  • Fed news and events info into the NASA UK yahoo group mailings
  • Spent money from our Grant for The Arts funding to support the above and made a report.

Updates from the NASA UK Steering Group

Bev Adams 

My work with NASA over the past three years has been about developing the organisation and building its capacity and our grants for the arts for organisational development has helped us to achieve this in 2012.  The steering group has been very active, NASA UK web and social media presence is improved and membership is on the increase. In addition, our relationships with ISAN, the Arts Council and European counterparts are much stronger.

The projects we are still working on include the National Street Arts Archive (see Tony’s update below) and a place for Street Arts in London Borough of Lambeth’s regeneration.

By February 2013 we will have drafted a business plan for 2013-2016.  FLOI 13 in Bristol is a key event for NASA members and steering group as this will be our AGM and an opportunity to input into the next three years of NASA. Please sign up ASAP for FLOI 13 and come to the AGM, exciting plans are afoot as the arts landscape seismically shifts (again) under the present political constraints… we need your help!

Molly Orange

I’m one of the new kids on the NASA steering group block. Since doing my bit for the members I have been inspired to chase up one of my goals- to do some postgrad research into the thing we all know and love. It started hearing about the close of the Lanternhouse in Ulverston. Having made The Cabaret of Dr Caligari there with Artizani I can say I’m sad to see it go. Simultaneously talk of a new London based creation centre, the London Outdoor Arts Facility (LOAF), currently being lobbied by Roger from BOSI, got me thinking- in order to understand what we artists need in terms of facilities, surely we need to understand our processes (for there are many) first?

One thing can be said: we all have a different process of creating work. Yes, this is blindingly obvious and also true of our indoor counterparts but at least they have basic outlines that have been cultivated and more importantly documented for them to follow or react against. Are there formulas for creating work outdoors? Is there an overriding practice in the UK right now? Some of you probably have more of an answer than I do, but that’s what I want to look into, to take a snapshot of WHO is doing WHAT, WHY and HOW are they doing it. What’s the ideal creation process? What’s stopping people make the work they want to make? How do we make sure it’s about the art and not the context? It’s going to be a long journey for me, hopefully starting in September with a lot of primary research. I want to spend time with as many companies as possible, so expect a call in a year’s time from me asking to peek into your world. Put the kettle on, I’ll bring the biscuits.

Paschale Straiton

We want to be able to offer helpful and inspiring ways in which we can collaborate. Practically speaking: in the near future we aim to be able to share contact details for festivals and local councils, so that we don’t all have to spend valuable time researching this independently and to clarify where we could all help each other with resources like rehearsal or storage space. Artistically: our community provides a huge amount of skill and expertise and we would like to facilitate ways in which we can share skills and offer each other useful, critical evaluation. Let’s work together to ensure a sustainable and well supported future.

Tony Lidington (Uncle Tacko)

Our Place in the Pantheon of Art!

We’ve all got plastic bags, buckets and broken filing cabinets mouldering away with our ancient publicity, reviews, funding applications, bills, running orders and strange quirky momentos. This is the stuff of an archivist’s dreams! Our sector has, for centuries, been the poor relation of the more ‘legitimate forms’ of performance. A lot of my work is about researching old practices of popular entertainment forms and putting them into contemporary contexts, but the practical, professional details of pierrot troupes, flea circuses, raree shows and pantomime is, on the whole, pretty hard to find! NASA are trying to persuade some key universities to house the archive material of any ‘outdoor’ or ‘street’ arts practitioners or organisations, in secure and safe repositories. Instead of cluttering-up the office, the spare room and the attic, the aim is for these materials to be retained and eventually digitised and archived by research students, at a later date. The Desperate Men and Natural Theatre have already begun this process with Bristol University and on behalf of NASA, I am researching the possibility of other regions providing a similar service. If successful, we hope to make some sort of a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund to kick-start the process and then the call would go out to our colleagues and associates to provide the archives of the industry. The fair folk have a Showman’s Archive held at Sheffield and the V&A holds the theatre archive, but our sector has always dismissed and devalued…this is a project to demand our place for posterity as a significant, potent, popular form which equal to, if not surpassing, the less accessible and therefore more transient performance forms.

Starting this January on our website

  • Making Maps of all NASA members available to bookers and the public
  • Making Maps for resources and organisations available to members.

We offer to include you on the Maps – in fact we will include you unless you ask us not to! So please let the web robot know soon. What does the Map look like, how does it work? Check out the Steering Group Map here.

(just email with subject “No to Map of Me”)

Annual Membership invoices will be sent out in early January to Members


Many thanks for your continued involvement and support!

Festive and Seasonal Greetings to One and All,

Yours faithfully,

Jules, the Membership Robot for NASA UK.

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