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BBC Wales's Frances Donovan
"Less than one tenth of the estimated 200,000 have come through the door"
 real 28k

Tuesday, 15 February, 2000, 06:17 GMT
Job cuts at arts centre

Centre for Visual Art The centre had hoped for 200,000 visitors


Wales's multi-million pound Centre for Visual Arts has made staff redundant just five months after it opened.

The gallery in the centre of Cardiff blames some of its problems on having to charge schools for visits.

The decision to axe four of the 22 jobs at the centre comes after a leaked report revealed that it had financial difficulties.


We have had a good turn-out. We want more and we want to make sure that the building works for Wales
Sally Medlyn , Centre Director
The centre had high hopes of attracting 200,000 visitors a year when it opened last September.

The director Sally Medlyn said it is unfortunate that they - unlike museums - have to charge schools for admission.

"We have had a good turn-out. We want more and we want to make sure that the building works for Wales, " said Ms Medlyn.

The centre has now learned that it is getting a grant of just over 200,000 for the next 12 months from the Arts Council of Wales, but its progress is to be reviewed over the next six months.

A decision was expected last week after consultations with staff and efforts to find other cost-cutting measures.

Lottery-funded

The CVA was launched in September last year after a successful 9m refurbishment of the Old Library in the city centre.

But a consultation document leaked last week revealed that cuts in the centre's expenditure would possibly have to be made.

Alternative proposals were understood to include closing the centre in between seasons.

The gallery employs five workshop leaders on short fixed-term contracts, nine posts on a full-time equivalent basis and casual staff.

Events held at the centre since its opening have included the Australian Season exhibition, featuring works of art from a variety of artists and the Unconvention show of artwork that has inspired Welsh band The Manic Street Preachers.

The gallery was loaned works by Picasso, Edvard Munch, Jackson Pollock and Andy Warhol for the exhibition.

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See also:
14 Feb 00 |  Wales
Arts centre cuts jobs
29 Jan 00 |  Wales
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20 Nov 99 |  Wales
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