DACS is seeking partners for a UK-wide programme of artists’ placements on high streets to re-set and renew society post-Covid 19.

Work with us

ART WORKS is a high-profile future facing initiative which will place artists in the high streets of our towns and cities in spaces made vacant in the past year. It will employ the creativity of artists to reimagine and re-build, making a visible impact on place-making, community, local economies and culture.

We want to collaborate with partners to develop projects of scale and impact. Led by a project coordinator, a team of up to 15 artists both local and national, established and newly qualified will develop projects and engage communities in each location for a year. This use of space will create new ways to imagine and use retail, commercial and public spaces, to enliven our high streets and to engage local people in creativity.

Pre-pandemic creative industries contributed £112bn to the UK economy, with visual arts and artists an important part of this success. By employing the creativity of artists, we can help create opportunity, boost local economies and fuel wider economic recovery. 

Call for expression of interest

We are seeking expressions of interest from towns, cities, high streets, regions and organisations to collaborate with us to develop and pilot this exciting intiative, as one of 5 participating locations in this significant national programme.

We will be seeking a financial contribution estimated at £160,000 plus vacant properties to be a partner of the project. Your contribution will cover your participation including selection and management of the artists and programme. Your investment will see an immediate return to the value of £200,000 which we are seeking from national funding sources.

This call may be of particular interest to Future High Street Fund awardees though other towns and cities are welcome to apply.

How to apply

Please download the application form from this page and include with your submission:


  • 500 word statement outlining your interest in the scheme
  • 500 word description of your location and context
  • An indication of the type and location of vacant properties which the project may occupy
  • An outline of any plans or schemes which will set the context for your participation in ART WORKS
  • An indication of your ability to fulfil the financial contribution to the scheme and whether finances are confirmed or subject to application

Please submit your expression of interest by 28 May 2021 to artworks@dacs.org.uk

Further information and help

If you have any questions please refer to our FAQs on this page.

We will also be running online surgeries, where you can talk to ask us about the scheme, on the afternoon of 11 May.

If you are interested in booking a surgery please email us.

About DACS

The programme is being developed by and delivered through DACS. We are the leading UK organisation championing artists’ rights and their sustained and vital contribution to culture, society and the creative economy.