We are delighted to be launching Mesh, a wiki site that has been initiated by Into the Wild Artist Interpreter Esther McManus and developed with this year’s Into the Wild cohort. It is an online community-built space by and for UK artists, to support artistic practice through the sharing of information, knowledge and resources. Of her motivation to create the wiki, Esther has said:

“Wikis offer a practical way to share knowledge beyond the timeframe and cohort of this year’s Into the Wild. The joy of wikis is that every reader can also be a contributor – anyone can add their own content and help build the site into a valuable resource for others.”

The name Mesh reflects the Into the Wild group’s search for new cooperative art world structures, rejecting the idea that success is modelled on the individual’s ability to ‘climb a ladder’, and instead thinking about how, through working together, more mutually supportive structures can be built. Mesh also points to the fact that we are already in this art world together, and that we all have valuable ideas and knowledge to contribute.

As a continual work in progress, we hope that the wiki is user-friendly and flexible enough for artists to contribute to, take from and shape in ways that are useful for both the individual and known and unknown peers around the country. Although it is intended to be a community-generated resource, how-to guides have been built into the site and content has begun to be added to give a sense of how it might be used and made useful, and to support those that are unfamiliar with wikis.

The site is divided into three broad sections:

  • Networks: an atlas of workshops, facilities, groups and artists in the UK, organised by location and by type
  • Resources: useful and practical templates, guides, walkthroughs & links to other external, practical information
  • Inspiration: a library of creative activities and reading to inspire your practice

The wiki can be found at: https://mesh.miraheze.org/

Originally planned to be developed over the course of 2020, we have instead been working intensively on this for the last couple of months, as we feel that in light of the Covid-19 pandemic and the additional challenges it poses for emerging artists, that now is the time when new tools for support are needed and when it is important to continue to build solidarity across the art community.

We hope that you enjoy exploring and contributing to this site, and will help us to spread the word about the wiki by sharing it across your networks.

image: Esther McManus, Into the Wild Artist Assignment No.7