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Trusts & grantmakers

Photo of woman performing on stage in front of an audience

Funding enables the Barbican to develop new ways of unlocking the creative potential of people from all walks of life and to continue welcoming the work of outstanding artists from around the globe.

Join our community of partners and funders and be part of the Barbican’s arts and creative learning programmes.

We work with trusts and grantmakers in support of the Barbican’s presentation of brave and adventurous work, and to increase the accessibility of its programmes for individuals and communities across London.  Funding enables the Barbican to develop new ways of unlocking the creative potential of people from all walks of life and to continue welcoming the work of outstanding artists from around the globe.

We couldn’t support the Barbican’s pioneering arts and learning programmes without the generosity and encouragement of our community of Barbican partners and funders. To discover how you could join them or to find out more about the impact of charitable giving through the Barbican Centre Trust, contact the Trusts and Grants team. 

Case Studies

Young people on stage

Creative Learning

Barking Nuns and Heritage Lottery Fund

Funding of Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning supports people of all ages and backgrounds to discover their creative voice and access world-class arts for free. 

In 2018 we were thrilled to secure a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), its first ever to the Barbican Centre Trust, for Barking Nuns, a Barbican Guildhall Creative Learning project that forms part of The Art of Change Season. Barking Nuns is a project led by Creative Learning alongside volunteer researchers from Valence House Museum, students from one of Britain’s largest secondary schools, Sydney Russell School in Barking and Dagenham, and artists from theatre company Complicité. It forms part of Change Makers, a year-long residency in Sydney Russell School that celebrates the rich feminist heritage of Barking and Dagenham.

young barbican private view basquiat

Visual Arts

Basquiat and Cockayne Grants for the Arts

Funding of the Barbican Art Gallery and Curve Programme continues to support the presentation of the best of international visual art to the widest possible audience, as well as supporting the artists of today and tomorrow.  

This year the Barbican staged its most successful exhibition in its 35-year history, Basquiat: Boom for Real. The exhibition captured the imaginations of audiences as well as funders, who responded with generous support for the Barbican’s celebration of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work.

The Barbican’s associated public talks programme, which was an important and integral part of this remarkable exhibition, was made possible by a grant from the Cockayne Foundation. The grant enabled Barbican Art Gallery to programme an outstanding series of events that took place throughout the 4-month exhibition run, between September 2017 and January 2018.  

The programme offered UK audiences an opportunity to hear from leading academics on Basquiat’s work, as well as the chance to consider the ongoing relevance of Basquiat’s work on artists today.

Colour photo of After the Rehearsal/Persona

International Programme

Toneelgroep Amsterdam Residency

The support of trusts and grantmakers continues to play a vital part in the Barbican’s international programme, which brings artists of all kinds from around the globe to London.

Showcasing the very best of the Barbican’s work in bringing world-class theatre to London audiences and local communities, the Centre welcomed the internationally-renowned Toneelgroep Amsterdam and award-winning director Ivo van Hove back to the main stage for an extended range of performances and creative learning projects in 2017. 

The Trust was delighted to receive support for this residency from many funders including the SHM Foundation, which helped to bring four electrifying plays to thousands of audience members. Alongside this, more than 600 students across east London took part in the Barbican Theatre Boxprogramme, which was curated and co-delivered by van Hove and the Toneelgroep Amsterdam team in collaboration with the Barbican.

In their words

‘We’ve been learning new experiences; we’ve never done stuff like this before. It encourages us for the future if we ever wanted to work on arts projects, we’ve got experience already‘
Student and Change Maker, Sydney Russell School
‘Our Basquiat events programme was funded by a generous grant from the Cockayne Foundation, allowing us to bring an impressive array of leading experts from the US to discuss Basquiat’s work‘
Jane Alison, Head of Visual Arts
‘The play, Obsession, really drew the students to the theatre and showed them the rich possibilities available to theatre makers.‘
Teacher and Barbican Box participant