Funding and access to funding is a key element in sustaining project spaces. There are many funding tools that project spaces can use to cover the costs of labor, materials, and rent. But the options are competitive and usually involve a lot of effort and paperwork. In our opinion, there needs to be a change in the funding system that includes simplifying the application process and shortening the waiting time between submission and announcement of the result. Only like this can the project space keep the momentum and focus on artistic and curatorial projects.The pandemic gave us a pause and became a forced hiatus.
For us, it didn’t make sense to organize events or to move into the digital space during the last year.
A willingness to think outside the box, to implement short-term funding, and to listen to the needs of the community. Not everyone requires long term investments; others would like to apply for EUR 500 to develop a project for next month. These quick, low-cost funding opportunities are not clearly available yet. When implementing initiatives, first think about the places and the people you are trying to serve. Requiring project spaces to have a program mapped out six months in advance, or ask for only German-language applications is not responding to the community.The word “project space” is almost misleading to me. Projects do not have to take place in spaces. Radio shows, Instagram takeovers, and outdoor screenings are also projects. To focus on the aspect of space itself is to take a narrow view of what could – and is – happening in Berlin at the moment.
The ideal project space would come with a budget for production and overhead costs. Ideally, also the curators ought to get paid.