Artists and their Families

Artists are invited to consider what it might mean to work together with a non-artist family member.

A five day workshop
Thursday 23 – Monday 27 August 2018
Tate Britain, London

Deadline for applications: 5pm, Mon 18 June
This DIY is supported by Tate (Early Years and Family programme)

Project summary

Does your mother complain that she doesn’t understand what you do?
Do you think your grandfather has an amazing story to tell?
Have you always thought your sister was a natural dancer?
Would you like a shared experience with your boyfriend?
Are the dinnertime conversations with your daughter better than theatre?
Is the best friend who is really like the brother you never had desperate to try something new?

These are just some of the reasons that artists might want to participate in Artists and their Families, a peer-to-peer workshop devised and facilitated by Joshua Sofaer.

Over 5 days, artists are invited to consider what it might mean to work together with a non-artist family member. Through a range of exercises, participants will be encouraged to begin develop a professional collaboration with a member of their family.

We will explore ways of drawing on personal, familial relationships in the creative process. We will use family histories and anecdotes for storytelling; we will interview each other about our lives; we take turns in directing each other; artists will share their practice with their family member as an equal collaborator.

It will be important to create a safe, confidential, group environment for people to share their hopes, dreams and fears. At the same time it is important to recognise that this is not a group therapy session.

How to apply

Artists in any field but with an emphasis on contemporary performance, and a non-artist family member, are invited to apply. It is essential that both the artist and their non-artist family member can both make all workshop sessions.

The online application asks for information on you, your family member, your relationship to one another, and why you would like to participate in this DIY. Apply here.


This is a chance for artist participants to develop professionally with a non-artist member of their family in a safe environment. It is also an opportunity for them to create social bonds outside of their artistic practice.

What does family mean in this context?
– We recommend participants are a minimum of 10 years old. If you want to discuss exceptions, please feel free to get in touch.
– When we say ‘non-artist’ we mean those whose professional background is not in art or the cultural industries. If your family member is working in the arts in a very different discipline to you that might also be fine.
– The family member can be either biological or chosen. Friends that are considered as close family are also fine. Participants should define for themselves what constitutes family. The closer the relationship the more we expect the workshop will be of benefit.
– It is important that the same family member attends all the workshop sessions. Participants must remain the same throughout the workshop.

What are the costs?
– Like all DIYs, this workshop is free of charge, but participants are advised to bring a packed lunch.

If you have further questions about this DIY, please contact Joshua.

Artists and their Families was originally conceived for and produced by Prototype Paradise, Taiwan and is now developed out of the Live Art Development Agency’s DIY programme of professional development for artists.