Julia Farrington is a freelance arts producer and consultant, and an Associate Impact Producer in documentary film with Doc Society. Since 2005, she specialised in artistic freedom, working at the intersection between arts, politics and social justice and more recently has taken these interests into the field of documentary film. She was Head of Arts at Index on Censorship (2009 – 2014) and continued to work as Associate Arts Producer with Index in a freelance capacity, on her pioneering work on censorship and self-censorship in the arts in UK until 2020. She worked for Belarus Free Theatre (2014 – 2016) as their head of campaigns; and as interim Development Director for Kayd Somali Arts and Culture. She has worked internationally with artists and organisations in Myanmar, Belarus, Ethiopia, Turkey and Somaliland in support of the right to artistic freedom of expression. She currently works with Doc Society curating Films4Transparency festival which takes place during the biennial International Anti-Corruption Conference, in partnership with Transparency International. She is also project lead for Doc Society working with University of the Arts London on a pilot programme in the lead up to the launch of the new Storytelling Institute, a new initiative focusing on socially engaged art practice.
Examples of Julia’s work:
Advising institutions and individuals working with issues that fall within legally protected areas of society
- Ditchling Museum of Arts and Crafts – Eric Gill The Body
- Homegrown – The Inconvenient Muslim
- The Believers are but Brothers – Javaad Alipoor
- Tripwires 2011 – 2012: youth programme – exploring issues of freedom of expression, censorship, self-censorship through the arts.
- Where do you draw the line: 2013-2014 – working with literature and literacy organisations on issues of institutional positioning on freedom of expression.
- Risks, Rights ,Reputations: supporting risk-taking and controversy in the arts – 2017 – 2020 working with senior arts management, boards and senior police
Connecting and Mapping
Artsfex mapping project with Emerson College, Boston – working with students on interactive, graphic representations of mapping of organisational and institutional support for artists worldwide.
Research, Evaluation and Writing
Case studies on UK artworks that have ventured into protected areas of society – some that have been foreclosed on the advice of the police, others that have been successfully produced.
Working with Legal Frameworks
Edited a series of five information packs on UK laws that impact on what is sayable in the arts – counter-terrorism, public order, child protection, race and religious hatred and obscene publications.
Public Speaking and Events
Some examples of events devised and produced:
- Tripwires performance – young people promenade, multi-media performance in London’s East End
- Taking the Offensive, censorship and self-censorship in UK arts, London 2013
- The Art of Transition, Yangon 2013
- Belfast Symposium on artistic censorship in the Troubles and in peace time 2014
- ‘I’m with the Banned’ major international concert, artists performing in solidarity with artists who are not free., in collaboration with BBC Arts Online – featuring David Gilmour and Pussy Riot London 2015
- Staging a Revolution – series of post show talks on themes of Belarus FreeTheatre repertoire