Netherlands/ 8.1 Support to artists and other creative workers
8.1.2 Special artists funds
The Public Cultural Funds play an important role in executing national cultural policy. They were established with the objective of subsidising one-off (individual) cultural activities or projects. As of 2009, the Funds will have the structural obligation of granting multi-annual subsidies to organisations, groups, companies, production houses etc (up to a maximum of 4 years). The Funds are themselves responsible for the evaluations.
Below is an overview of the existing Public Cultural Funds, falling under the rule of the Cultural Policy Act (Wet op het specifiek cultuurbeleid, 1993] (see chapter 2.1 and chapter 5.1.3):
- The Netherlands Foundation for Visual Arts, Design and Architecture (Fonds BKVB, 1987): this Fund offers a range of grant options: Basic Grants for visual artists and autonomous designers, Incentive Grants for visual artists, designers and architects and Cultural Mediation Grants for cultural theorists, critics and exhibition curators. In addition, the Fonds BKVB has access to a number of artist-in-residence studios in various countries and, in alternate years, an architecture study tour is organised. Recently, the Pilot Projects were established with a view to promoting outstanding projects. Every two years, the Fonds BKVB presents Oeuvre Awards in each discipline, the Award on Art Criticismand the Benno Premsela Award (design). The Fonds BKVB operates a small exhibition space which regularly features work that has come about with the help of a Fonds BKVB grant.
- The Mondriaan Foundation, (Mondriaan Stichting, 1994), is responsible for the support of exhibitions, artists' initiatives, purchases, events, books and magazines, presentations outside the Netherlands and at international art fairs. It also aims to strengthen the international position of contemporary visual arts and design and to enlarge and extend interest in, and the demand for, visual arts, design and cultural heritage from the Netherlands. The Mondriaan Foundation therefore publishes articles, organises symposia / debates and an international visitor's programme and is responsible for the Dutch entry at the Venice Biennale. Financial support is given to institutions, companies and authorities, both national and international, to reach their audience and extend that reach. The Fund stimulates the creation of collections (museums), on issues such as the cultural heritage of minorities, activities to enhance the visibility of collections, security for collections, educational projects, selection policies for museum objects, and art historical research as well. In 2008, 17 organisations for the presentation of visual arts and artists' initiatives received 1.9 million euros for the programming of visual arts (for other activities of the Mondriaan Foundation, see chapter 4.2.4).
- Netherlands Architecture Fund (Stimuleringsfonds voor Architectuur, 1993): commissioned by four ministries (Education, Culture and Science; Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment; Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality; Foreign Affairs). The Fund operates 3 subsidy agreements: the Architecture Project Grants Programme for cultural projects in the fields of architecture, landscape architecture, urban design and interior architecture, to foster the development of design disciplines in the Netherlands and the dissemination of knowledge of these disciplines; the Belvedere Project Grants Programme for projects that incorporate cultural history in the thinking about the spatial design of the Netherlands; and the HGIS Culture Fund (see chapter 3.4.5) to reinforce the international position of Dutch architecture and urban design. The Fund supports projects, exhibitions, debates, design contests and research. Its objective is to raise the quality level of the design disciplines, the effectiveness of related policies and the design climate in general. In 2006, a total of 4381260 million euros were granted: Architecture 2713160 euros, Belvedere 1123299 euros and HGIS 544801 euros.
- Netherlands Fund for the Performing Arts+ (Nederlands Fonds voor Podiumkunsten+, 2007); a new public Fund for music, dance and theatre, originated from a merger between 3 performing arts funds: the Music Composers Fund (Fonds voor de Scheppende Toonkunst, 1982), the Netherlands Fund for the Amateur Arts and Performing Arts (Fonds voor Amateurkunst en de Podiumkunsten, 1993); and the National Fund for Performing Arts Programming and Marketing (Fonds voor Podiumprogrammering en Marketing 2001). The budget for the new Fund will be around 50-60 million euros. Its task is to stimulate efforts to reach large and diverse audiences, varying from children and youth, to an adult public. Special attention will be given to the development of talents, professionalism in the performing artists, ensembles / companies, stages and festivals, and to cultural entrepreneurship. Stimulation of innovation in the chain of creating, production and distribution is another task to perform. The Fund distinguishes a 4 year agreement for performing arts institutions 2009-2012 (meant for performing arts institutions, as well as for ensembles, companies and festivals), and, until 2009, includes the existing agreements of the 3 merger funds. In the course of 2008, these agreements are being evaluated and integrated into new agreements for project subsidies for 3 years.
- Dutch Film Fund (Nederlands Fonds voor de Film, 1993): the fund subsidises projects and activities in the field of film-making in order to broaden the quality and diversity in Dutch national film making. Only producers can apply; individual authors or directors are not eligible, except for research and development. Organisations can apply for activities such as courses, workshops, publications and events, or media education. The Fund supports the development, realisation and distribution of qualitative and art house films, films for children and youth, documentaries, experimental films, short films and animation films. The budget for the Fund in 2007 amounted to 14.9 million euros. There is also a budget of 18.1 million euros for the"supplement arrangement" (from the cv-agreement which ended in 2007), which is intended to stimulate films with a cultural value, which contribute to the diversity of cultural expressions in the Netherlands and, by their accessibility, are capable of reaching large audiences.
Media, literature and libraries
- Dutch Foundation for Literature (Fonds voor de Letteren, 1965): the Fund's aim is to raise the quality and availability of Dutch and Frisian literature, by providing work and travel grants to writers and translators of fiction, poetry, non-fiction, children's books and drama. On a yearly basis, the Fund invests over 5 million euros in over 500 literary projects of writers and translators. The Dutch Foundation for Literature also wishes to increase publication possibilities for foreign authors who live in the Netherlands but who do not (yet) write in the Dutch language. One of the most successful means of promotion has proven to be the "Introductory Portfolio". Authors from non-western countries who have not yet been published in the Netherlands, or are temporarily residing in the Netherlands as political refugees and of whom it is uncertain whether they intend, or are able, to write in Dutch are all eligible for these Introductory portfolios. The Dutch Foundation for Literature operates a writer-in-residence programme.
- Foundation for the Production and Translation of Dutch Literature (Nederlands Literair Productie- en Vertalingenfonds, 1991): the fund aims to promote interest in Dutch-language (including Frisian) literature abroad. It maintains contacts with a large number of international publishers, and has a stand at major international book fairs, including the Frankfurt Book Fair, the London Book Fair and the Children's Book Fair in Bologna. It brings into operation a set of subsidy regulations for foreign publishers who wish to publish translations of Dutch or Frisian literature and for literary institutions, universities and publishers who can apply for subsidies towards the travel costs of authors taking part in literary programmes and / or promotional activities in connection with translated works. The Foundation also organises writer-in-residence programmes in London, Paris, Berlin, Vienna, Budapest, Ann Arbor and Paramaribo. Translators from Dutch into any language, who want to improve or maintain their language skills and their knowledge of Dutch culture, are welcome at the Translators' House in Amsterdam.
Chapter published: 24-01-2011