'Under the Shadows of A Subterranean River' Group Show 27th October - 30th October 2016
The Crypt Gallery, St Pancras, London
For this show I was cajoled into working as part of the Finance Team. There were six members. I felt as though I contributed a lot of time and thought for this role but was not looking to head the finance team. Having been in this role on numerous occasions previously I knew that the collection of money from peers was going to be a long task and made sure that I gave a deadline for these to be collected as I did not want to spend the entire summer chasing people. I felt that this particular collection role was mainly down to both Fiona and myself.
We looked to find various ways to raise money externally but the summer meant that communication virtually broke down any momentum. Since we had covered the cost of the hiring of The Crypt it was down to the team to find a solution for any other funding. One suggestion I had given was to enquire whether we could raise funds through the Considerate Constructors Scheme. I was not able to take on this task as I was already project leading Interventions and Canary Wharf Residency. Although I introduced a couple of members to someone that could explain the scheme in more details no further action was taken to explore this.
Additionally I had dealings with UAL finance over the ordering of provisions for the PV.
Skills required were:
Excel Spreadsheets - keeping the books balanced
Time management - both raising the funds and creating work for the show
Organisation - Collecting the funds in time
Collaborative - working with other members of the team and other teams over tasks.
Negotiation - both with UAL Finance and the Curation Team
Logistics - making sure that there was a float for the bar, working out how much drink was required for the PV
Problem solving - how to raise the money for the show. I had initially talked to the second years about this and suggested that we all pay £1 per week. Fiona helped collect the funds and I made sure the money was safely transferred to the bank.
Balancing all this with creating my work for the show
I felt that other teams had strengths and weaknesses. However, there was very little, if any, direction, let alone communication at times particularly considering what a long lead in we had. I believe that many teams did not understand the full implications of the tasks required either individual or collectively.
The Finance Team were given the task of buying the drinks for the PV but we were not given direction by the Logistics/ Project Management as to how much. Many things were overlooked and taken for granted that someone may sort like making sure we had a float for the bar, and more worryingly there was very little regard as to what happened to all the money accrued on the evening of the PV.
Disappointingly there were some very unnecessary instances but equally there were some very professional outcomes including the final curation, and the video of the show. If people are inexperienced they should look to the more experienced for guidance or perhaps not take on roles they are not prepared to commit to.
Video Showcase By Qianqian Cai
Photographs of show by Fiona Mountney