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Studios FAQ

Please read our Frequently Asked Questions below for more information on applying, and using the studios.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I see one of the studios available?

Do I need to pay to register with you?

How long will I have to wait to get a studio?

How do you select artists for the spaces? What criteria is used to allocate the studios?

Who can have a Bow Arts studio?

There are questions about noisy work on the application form. What does this mean?

Can I live in the studios? Can I sleep overnight occasionally?

How accessible are the studios?

What happens after I have viewed a studio and been told it can be allocated to me?

Can I pay in cash?

How secure are the studios?

How long can I keep the studio?

What is the notice period?

What is a licence fee? Is that the same as rent?

What does the licence fee include? What doesn’t it include?

Do the studios have heating?

Does the licence fee cover insurance?

Can I share the studio?

Can I sublet the studio?

What about Open Studios?

 

How can I see one of the studios available?

You need to register with us first, (see the ‘apply for a studio’ section ) then we can arrange for you to see the currently available and soon to be available spaces. 

Once you have registered we will contact you with a list of what is available. After that you need to get in touch with us to make a viewing appointment.

 

Do I need to pay to register with you?

No, unlike some other publicly funded studio organisations we do not charge a fee to register with us. We do charge a small admin fee of twenty pounds when you sign the licence agreement to actually take on a studio with us.

 

How long will I have to wait to get a studio?

You need to be proactive in contacting us if you need a space. We won’t necessarily contact you each time a space becomes available – as we believe those who need a space most will be those artists who are proactive in searching.

Availability can be hard to predict and demand can be high.

If you can be flexible about the sort of space you take on initially you will find a space sooner.

   

How do you select artists for the spaces? What criteria is used to allocate the studios?

We use the application process to ensure all those registered with us are active professional artists/ creative practitioners. We try and make sure we place artists in spaces where their practice will be complimentary to those around them, and not cause problems due to noise etc. All other things being equal, preference will be given to those who have been registered for longest, but there may be further individual criteria for different sites. Artists currently with a Bow Arts studio licence who wish to move to another space within our buildings may be given preference, if they are on our internal waiting list.

 

Who can have a Bow Arts studio? 

Some organisations restrict the use of their studios to ‘non commercial fine artists only’.

We think this is an outmoded definition, and within our buildings we accommodate a range of practices, including painters, printmakers, photographers, performance artists, sculptors, those working in digital media, video, film, craft, applied arts, design etc.

We reserve the right to charge a different non subsidised licence fee to individuals or organisations that are operating on a more commercial basis.

 

There are questions about noisy work on the application form. What does this mean?

We need to know about your studio practice so we can help find you a place that will be suitable for you and others around you. Some of studios are semi open plan and therefore noisy, dusty or certain other practices wouldn’t be suitable in those spaces

 

Can I live in the studios? Can I sleep overnight occasionally?

Any use of the studios for sleeping or residential use is strictly forbidden, there are clear health and safety reasons for this. Please see our ‘Live Work’ section if you need a place to live as well as make work 

   

How accessible are the studios?

All our buildings have different in terms of physical accessibility. At present P1 Studios, Old Manor Park Library, and IceHouse Court (Barking) are the sites which have studios which are accessible for wheelchair users.

   

What happens after I have viewed a studio and been told it can be allocated to me?

We will contact you and arrange time and date for you to come to our office to sign a licence agreement for the studio. Where time permits we will email you the agreement prior to the appointment so you have plenty of time to read the agreement before the meeting. But we will also take you through the licence agreement and be able to explain it to you, prior to you signing.

You will need to pay a two month deposit at this stage, the initial first month ( or part of month) licence fee, and be asked to set up a direct debit for your future payments.

Please be aware you must have a UK bank account and be able to set up a direct debit in order to take a studio.

If you cannot make a card payment or bring a cheque for the deposit we will arrange with you to make a bank transfer in advance of the meeting with us.

   

Can I pay in cash?

No, you will need to make the initial payment by card payment, cheque, or bank transfer. The only method we accept for regular monthly payments is by direct debit. There are no exceptions to this.

   

How secure are the studios?

Our sites have suffered from very few break-ins over the years. The safety of the studios does rely to large extent on our occupants vigilance and cooperation in ensuring doors and windows are securely locked.

   

How long can I keep the studio? 

We cannot guarantee a period longer than our leases. These vary for each site. We also review regularly how the studios are being used as we want to ensure best use is made of the spaces. There is no set maximum time we restrict you to, provided you are complying with the terms of the agreement with us.

 

What is the notice period?

Under our licence agreement you are required to give two calendar months' notice (this must be from the 1st of the month).

   

What is a licence fee? Is that the same as rent?

We use licences rather than tenancies for our agreements with artists. This offers both you and us more flexibility and keeps the administration costs down, a saving which we can pass onto you. 

Under a tenancy you pay rent, under a licence you pay a fee, in return for which we licence you to use the space, under the terms set out in the licence agreement.

   

What does the licence fee include? What doesn’t it include?

The licence fee includes all management costs, including rates. It does not always include electricity or gas heating or internet costs. 

There are different arrangements for recharging utilities (electric, gas, internet) at different sites.

 

Do the studios have heating?

At Bow Rd Studios some studios have communal gas heating which is recharged at cost.
At P1 Studios each studio is fitted with electric heaters which are paid for through the individually metered bill.
At Stratford Studios there is gas central communal heating to some studios.

At Rum Factory Studios there are individual electric oil filled radiators supplied to all studios.

 

At ArtSpace at St Katharine Studios there are individual electric heaters supplied to all studios.

 

At Old Manor Park Library there ais gas central communal heating supplied to most studios.

 

 

Does the licence fee cover insurance?

Bow Arts covers public liability insurance for all its studio sites.
Licence holders are responsible for their own contents cover insurance
If you employ assistants, or use volunteers or students to assist you in your studio you are responsible for arranging Employers Liability Insurance, and we may ask for evidence of this cover.

   

Can I share the studio?

We are happy for artists to share spaces to keep costs down. This must be done through by Bow Arts by formal agreement with us though – we do not permit ad-hoc sharing, even for short periods.

Let us know when you apply if you wish to share the studio, all artists wishing to share must be registered with us, it helps if you indicate when applying that you want to be together.

We can easily add another artist to a new licence agreement at a later date too, so please contact us should your circumstances change and you wish to share (or vice versa).

 

Can I sublet the studio?

We don’t allow artists to sublet the studios. If you need to take a break from the space for 6,9, or 12 months we can try and help you arrange this, but as with sharing, it must be done formally though Bow Arts . 

 

What about Open Studios?

We run an extremely successful and popular Open Studios programme. We support this actively and part of your licence fee contributes towards the marketing and project management of this event.

It is a requirement of the licence agreement that each artist must take part in the Open Studios, full participation is a key to its continuing success.

We encourage all artists to be active members of the studio community, and assisting in the running and setting up of Open Studios is an excellent way of doing this, and creating opportunities for you as an artist.