Developed by our in-house international agency - Wales Arts International - the Art Council of Wales’s International Strategy sets out new ambitions for redefining the nation’s cultural relationship with Europe, building connections with countries world‑wide and showcasing Wales’s art and artists on a global stage. The plan acknowledges the potential of the arts to inspire, encourage tolerance and enable those they engage to find their voice and to express themselves as global citizens.
Phil George, Chair of the Arts Council of Wales introduced the Strategy at a meeting to launch a Wales partnership for the UNESCO Year of Indigenous Languages at St Fagans, National Museum of History:
"At a time when Wales’ place in the world is changing rapidly, the Art Council’s commitment to international working has never been more important. With so many challenges around the globe, navigating our way through stormy seas seems to have become a new norm.
"At such times the arts are vital, shining a searching and illuminating light on the world we live in. This is why working internationally is so important, now more than ever, in developing a dynamic and welcoming country with creativity at its heart."
Nick Capaldi, Chief Executive, Arts Council of Wales said:
"As we redefine our relationship with Europe, growing productive and forward‑looking relations is now more important than ever."
"Cultural exchange broadens our understanding of other people and communities. But Wales’s artists are also looking for new opportunities and market places for their work. For the Arts Council of Wales this means working closer with other agencies in the broader cultural sector as well as increased cooperation with the British Council, relevant UK Government departments and agencies responsible for culture, foreign policy, trade and industry."
Alongside Europe, China and India, the strategy identifies Canada as a new geographic priority. There’s also a particular focus on those nations and regions with longstanding cultural and linguistic connections to Wales.
Eluned Hâf, Head of Wales Arts International added:
"Our arts, our culture and our languages give Wales its unique global personality, one that resonates with many other minority languages and cultures around the world.
"The arts have an important role to play as we re-imagine Wales’s cultural place, voice and brand in the changing world. "
"To overcome the challenges posed by Brexit, we’re encouraging the sector to work together and to step-up our collective engagement in European and international networks."
Arts Council of Wales published a Guidance Note on Brexit implications for the Arts in Wales in December 2018. It meets regularly with Arts Council of England, Creative Scotland, Arts Council of Ireland, Culture Ireland, British Council to prepare for a world beyond Brexit.