More Than a Hundred Stories

We are two artists, interested in how art can animate, challenge and create communities. We’ve been commissioned by Creative People and Places to creatively map and respond to its achievements, the problems it faces, and the questions it has generated.

We are interested in the programme’s ambition to change how art is commissioned and experienced and will be exploring how and to what extent this ambition has been realised across all 21 projects.

We will be posting creative responses to conversations, observations and research throughout the project and will share our final work with you in autumn 2016. Do join us and follow our creative journey on this blog.

You can find out more about our work at: and

Sarah Butler and Nicole Mollett

‘We are not a wasteland’ – visiting bait , 5th May 2016


I started my Northeast ‘tour’ (not on my bike this time!) visiting bait in South East Northumberland. We started off at their base at Woodhorn Museum, a fabulous complex of old colliery buildings plus a new building housing the region’s archive and a new exhibition, Common Ground, commissioned by bait, which brought together local groups with professional artists to create new work. I was struck by the variety and depth of the work, and particularly interested in how artists Robert Parkinson and Aaron Guy had created contemporary text and image pieces documenting their process working in Guide Post social club which stood up strongly in a gallery context and gave a glimpse of process-based work in a way I haven’t seen before.


The Money Bootcamp


On the 19th March 2016 Nicole Mollett attended the ‘Money Bootcamp’ in Ely organised by Market Place and supported by Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy.

I want to make Books exciting as Birthdays!

‘We’re Always Learning’ – visiting The Cultural Spring, 9th May 2016


Early Monday morning, I arrived at The Customs House in South Shields to see a huge ferry making its ponderous way towards the sea, a line of passengers along the deck soaking up the morning sunshine. The day started with a team meeting – a run through of projects and opportunities, and a space for everyone to share their work and ideas – then brief one-to-one chats with Rob (PR and Marketing), David (Communications and project management) and Michael (community engagement).

I learnt about The Cultural Spring’s workshop programme: a regular and extensive set of workshops, planned in conversation with local communities, and delivered across ten wards in Sunderland and South Tyneside. The Your Art funding scheme: which allows local groups to apply for small amounts of money to make creative things happen, with funding decisions made by a panel of community representatives. And their commissioning programme: regular large scale commissions throughout the year, and smaller R&D commissions, which are supported with the ambition that they will grow and develop.

Chewing gum art