Affordable artists' studios in London
Founded by Jonathan Harvey and David Panton in 1972, Acme Studios is a London-based charity which provides affordable studio space and residencies and awards for non-commercial fine artists. Through this provision it continues to make a vital contribution to the development of art and artists’ careers.
Acme supports over 700 artists and manages 582 studios in 15 buildings in Greater London, offering a wide range of high-quality, long-term and professionally-managed space including permanent new-build studios. In 2014 we opened a new studio project, Warton House in Stratford. The previous year we opened High House Artists' Studios, a purpose-built stand-alone studio building including work/live units in Purfleet, and Glassyard in Stockwell which contains a large 'transitional studio' space for recent graduates from Central Saint Martins.
The current average cost of an Acme studio is £11.15 per square foot per year or £279 per month for a 300f² (28m²) studio. This is one third the price of a comparable commercial space and less than most other London studio providers. The rent is fully inclusive of business rates, insurance and service charges - the only extra cost is electricity.
Residencies and Awards
In addition to affordable studio space, Acme also offers a Residency & Awards Programme, which is one of the most supportive and extensive in the UK including:
- Adrian Carruthers Award
- CSM Associate Studio Programme
- Chelsea BA Studio Award
- Chelsea MA Studio Award
- City & Guilds of London Art School Studio Award
- Fire Station Work/Live Residency Programme
- Goldsmiths Studio Award
- Helen Scott Lidgett Award
- Jessica Wilkes Award
- Jonathan Harvey Studio Award
- Rita Harris Studio Award
- Stephen Cripps' Studio Award
Acme’s International Residencies Programme manages 22 artists’ residencies in London for international governments, cultural agencies and foundations.
Since its inception Acme has taken the lead in developing affordable, high-quality, secure and accessible space for artists in England. It has developed pioneering projects for permanent studio space working in partnership with local government and commercial and social housing developers.
Acme has advised and supported numerous organisations with an interest in helping to develop affordable space for artists. Its research has led to associated publications for artists, studios groups and others interested in the artist studio sector.
Increasingly Acme is working in partnership with art colleges to create programmes that meet the needs of recent graduates.
Artist Yukako Shibata in her studio at Harrow Road. Photo: Hugo Glendinning (2011)
- Acme Studios
- 44 Copperfield Road
- E3 4RR
- T +44 (0)20 8981 6811
Between 1996 and 2012 Acme received £3.2m of capital funding from Arts Council England which supported the creation of six permanent affordable studios in London: Copperfield Road, Fire Station, Galleria, Harrow Road, Leven Road and Matchmakers Wharf. This resulted in 186 studios and 12 work/live units in four London boroughs.