A couple of weeks ago, we posted an item on the Editors’ Blog about two open letters addressed to Tate on the occasion of Tate Modern’s 10th anniversary celebrations. One was from the organization Making a Living, criticizing the institution’s treatment of artists during the ‘No Soul for Sale’ event, the other a communique from Liberate Tate calling for Tate to drop its sponsorship agreement with BP.
Here is a brief update regarding the letter from Making a Living. At time of writing, Tate had not made their response to the organization public. However, the museum has since been in touch with frieze, informing us that they were in already in correspondence with Making a Living before ‘No Soul for Sale’. Below is a copy of the letter sent to them by outgoing Tate Modern director Vicente Todoli.
Dear Making a Living
Thank you for your reply and for your open letter outlining your specific concerns. In keeping with the original project in New York in 2009, No Soul For Sale is a convention of not for profit arts organisations who were all invited upon the same basis. The invitation to participants explained that Tate was providing a free platform to organisations to present their work at the event. The festival was free to the public. It was also made clear to them that this would be part of Tate Modern’s 10th anniversary celebrations.
By hosting this project Tate wanted to look outwards at the other models of institution within the art world. It was a celebration of the myriad of organisations and collectives that contribute to our vibrant visual culture. In the original announcement of the event it was expressed that Tate was the host, with the concept of the event being that of the Curators, and the presentations being independently devised by the organisations taking part. The logistics for a large-scale event like this are complex and it was supported by a dedicated team across departments in the organisation. Tate is also a not-for-profit organisation and any funds raised go towards running the gallery.
We have received a very positive response from many of the participants who have expressed their interest to the Curators in taking part in the event if it is staged for a third time.