Creative Scotland: Janet Archer appointed new chief executive

Janet Archer
Image caption Janet Archer will take up her post in July

Arts funding body Creative Scotland has appointed a new chief executive after its previous head stood down following a protest by artists.

Janet Archer, who is currently director of dance at Arts Council England, will take up her post in July.

Creative Scotland has been without a leader since Andrew Dixon resigned in December last year.

In October, 100 leading artists had launched an attack on the management and running of the organisation.

Crime author Ian Rankin and national poet Liz Lochhead were among those putting their names to an open letter condemning Creative Scotland's decision-making and saying it was in an "ongoing crisis".

A funding shake-up had seen 49 groups - including the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra and the Edinburgh Mela - told by letter that their regular funding would end in spring 2013.

Ms Archer has worked frequently in Scotland in the past, most recently chairing the artist-led organisation The Work Room, which is based at the Tramway in Glasgow.

The former dancer and choreographer said she was "thrilled and excited" at her new role.

She said: "The passion and intelligence emerging out of recent debate has reinforced the vital role that Creative Scotland has to play as a partner and facilitator.

"These conversations are evidence of a genuine dynamic at work in the country, and a real desire to make the best use of the fantastic resources of intellectual and human capital available to us.

"I'm simply delighted to have the opportunity to contribute towards Scotland's creative future and look forward to working with people everywhere to unlock talent, drive opportunity, and grow artistic and cultural capital for this amazingly ambitious nation."

Her appointment has been largely welcomed by those working in the industry in Scotland.

Creative Scotland was established through a merger of the Scottish Arts Council with Scottish Screen and has an annual budget of more that £75m from Scottish government and Lottery funding.

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