#artsNI is a space for people who want to help make an ethically creative future for NI. A growing and diverse gathering of creative citizens, #artsNI celebrates the vibrant artistic communities, whose compassionate creativity makes NI stand out as one of the best of places not just in but for the world.
Whether you are a professional artist, a creative entrepreneur, part of a group, or an enthusiastic individual participating in the arts in your spare time, our guess is that you are involved for the sheer love of it. #artsNI exists to encourage and enable you to grow and broadcast the creative things you love to do through collective action.
NI is a part of the world where there has long been a marvellous creative cultural landscape from which many great artists have emerged and continue to emerge. Think, for example, about the world-renowned brilliance of northern Irish people like Seamus Heaney (Poet), C.S Lewis (Story-teller), Van Morrison (Musician), Liam Neeson (Actor), to name a few.
Against this amazing historical and contemporary background, we have a vision of a creative cultural economy – involving publicly funded arts, self-sustaining voluntary arts and creative industries – that makes NI a creative capital for Europe and the world by 2030. We see this emerging economy being about more than just material prosperity – growing knowledge and awareness, ideas and capabilities, imagination and appreciative curiosity, pride in belonging and shared purpose, compassionate action and a sense of wellbeing. We want to place that creative cultural economy, and the wealth and wellbeing it generates, in the service of people and communities.
We will seek to develop this creative economy through its main resource of people and their skills, ideas and networks, and by encouraging a single, integrated investment framework to include public, private and self-generated philanthropy. This framework will enable both social and economic benefits.
#artsNI will work to achieve our shared vision by 2030 through the 191 Project – inviting creative citizens, arts organisations, schools, businesses, local authorities and government ministries from across the 191 countries of the world to help us re-imagine Northern Ireland. We will exchange art and skills and creative people and ideas across the global arts community. We will work with others across society to make Northern Ireland an attractive destination for the artistic endeavour and creative cultural activity generally.
If you count yourself among us this is your platform and a place for your voice. Let’s come together, engage in civic conversation, and act to rebuild our creative cultural places. NI can become an international home for compassionate creativity and cultural innovation – a creative capital for the world!

Kevin Murphy | Champion | #artsNI

Kevin Murphy

Kevin Murphy, Chief Officer of Voluntary Arts Ireland, is the NI Champion for #artsNI. Kevin chairs the monthly meetings and ensures the voice of the grass roots arts sector of N.Ireland is heard. “Growing up in N.Ireland what sustained me was music and people. That creative space in our lives needs nurturing and I want NI to be known for that – to move from the imaginations of the few to the imaginations of the many”.

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