Frieze already had a globally recognised brand through their contemporary art fairs in London and New York, and the magazine that has been a core part of the art scene since 1991. They engaged Clever Boxer first to facilitate brainstorm sessions with senior management and their staff to generate ideas for new business ventures. These quickly honed in on a regular events programme which could both generate revenue and also give the brand a presence between issues of the magazine and the two fairs.
What we did
We developed a pilot programme of events for the new Frieze Academy to test the content, pricing, timing and potential audiences for the venture. These included ‘in conversation’ evenings with artists and authors such as Ben Rivers, John Akomfrah, and Olivia Laing; vocational courses on how to launch an independent magazine,how to write about art and Instagram for art and fashion; and higher priced guides to collecting art. Our objective was to create a robust programme which could be managed internally by Frieze beyond our engagement.
We carefully measured the feeback (qualitative and quantitative) to the pilot events, and fed the results back to the Frieze executive team. We also developed and handed over the processes, systems and strategy that would be needed to grow the Frieze Academy programme beyond our involvement. Frieze Academy is now an ongoing and revenue-generating venture, with a variety of events which can be viewed here.