The New Audiences programme was a milestone in arts funding in England. It was set up by Arts Council England to encourage as many people as possible, from all backgrounds and every walk of life, to participate in and benefit from the arts. This article describes the various visual arts projects undertaken as part of this programme of work. It outlines the content and impact that a wide selection of visual arts project had on audiences, organisations and partnerships. These include Architecture Week, Slot Art, Shooting Live Artists, The Library of Babel and Love Art Later.
New Audiences also allowed the Arts Council to develop broadcast partnerships to explore the cutting edge of arts practice and new media technology. A notable example was Slot Art, a three-year collaboration with Channel 4. Its main objective was to provide a television platform for artists’ work. In 2001, 16 artists were selected through open submission to make short, three-minute artists’ films for television. In 2002, Slot Art shifted its emphasis to explore how television might help stimulate an audience for art on the internet.