WeTransfer launches arts foundation The Supporting Act, endowed with €1 million for emerging creatives

The independent charity will uplift up-and-coming artists, designers, photographers, filmmakers and musicians through education, grants and an annual prize.

21 April 2021

WeTransfer has launched its own arts foundation called The Supporting Act, with a focus on supporting emerging creative talent including artists, designers, photographers, filmmakers and musicians. The file-transfer company will endow the foundation with €1 million to get it started, and from next year will commit one per cent of its annual revenue towards its work. Set up as an independent charity, The Supporting Act will run educational programmes, grants and an annual prize, starting in 2022.

The company says it hopes to build on its long history of supporting the creative community by putting in place a formal structure to ensure there is support for the industry in the long term. The foundation will help emerging creatives to study at home and abroad, and bursaries and grants will reward work that “aligns with WeTransfer’s B Corp values” of sustainability, responsibility and inclusivity.

The annual prize, the WeTransfer Award for Creative Excellence, will be based on a single challenge issued every year to arts institutions, universities and individuals across the creative arts.

The Supporting Act, like WeTransfer, will be based in the Netherlands but will operate across the US, UK, Italy, France and Germany, with potential to expand to other countries in future.

“WeTransfer has always played an active role in supporting the arts, from high-profile talent to emerging artists,” comments WeTransfer’s co-founder and chief creative officer Damian Bradfield in a statement. “As we’ve grown, so have our ambitions and commitment to finding new ways to be there for up-and-coming creative talent. The launch of WeTransfer’s Supporting Act Foundation is an important step as we build further on this legacy.

“Covid-19 has had a devastating impact on the arts, with a negative impact on patronage, sponsorship, and other opportunities – particularly for those without connections. Our ambition is for WeTransfer’s Supporting Act Foundation to help fill part of this vacuum, providing a helping hand to talented artists and creators at the start of their careers, particularly those from underrepresented backgrounds.”

WeTransfer commissioned Jean Jullien to make artwork for the announcement, depicting a group of acrobats making a human pyramid.

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Jean Jullien: The Supporting Act (Copyright © WeTransfer, 2021)

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Jenny Brewer

Jenny oversees our editorial output across work, news and features. She was previously It’s Nice That's news editor. Get in touch with any big creative stories, tips, pitches, news and opinions, or questions about all things editorial.

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