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Public Art Commissions Agency shuts up shop

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The Public Art Commissions Agency (paca) has shut down after 12 years in what its former director, Vivian Lovell, describes as 'a positive decision'. paca had , she said , 'reached the end of its natural lifetime'. With declining public subsidy it was no longer possible to continue funding full-time staff. In addition, Lovell is moving to London from the West Midlands where the agency was based. Lovell has instead set up a consultancy, Modus Operandi, with Stephen Beddoe, who was paca's London manager.

Other former staff have gone freelance. Lovell said, 'Public art is a continually evolving form. We are developing a commissioning service with other disciplines - with makers and architects, possibly with musicians and writers.' Current collaborations include one with Bennetts Associates on the Wessex Water building in Bath, involving three artists; and with MacCormac Jamieson Pritchard and seven artists for the Coventry Phoenix project. 'The idea of collaboration is beginning to reach new spheres,' Lovell said.

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