Illustrated World Series receives lifeline grant from Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund

The Illustrated World Series has been awarded £70,000 as part of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) to help face the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and to ensure they have a sustainable future, the Culture Secretary has announced today.

The Illustrated World Series is one of 588 cultural and creative organisations across the country receiving urgently needed support – with £76 million of investment announced today. This follows £257 million awarded earlier in the week to 1,385 organisations, also from the Culture Recovery Fund grants programme being administered by Arts Council England on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. Further rounds of funding in the cultural and heritage sector are due to be announced over the coming weeks.

Founded in 2010 the Illustrated World Series (IWS) offers an exciting tournament platform where artists battle head-to-head in 60-minute bouts to complete an A2 illustration inspired by a recent news headline. Showcasing some of the world’s most talented emerging illustrators and street artists, watch as they compete live, witness a clash of styles and interpretations as they battle to become world No.1!

Technical ability doesn’t always matter, more the ability to communicate an instantly thought provoking narrative, whether it be funny, serious or provocative – this underpins the series and drives the creation of such visceral, exciting and edgy content.

The IWS believe it’s important for live illustration to have a solid and respected platform with a competitive and sporting ethos. As a developing and rapidly growing part of England’s cultural ecology, IWS tournaments are popular with both professional and amateur artists and provide an essential, trusted and regulated tournament platform for freelance illustrators. This lifeline grant will help retain their status as a global benchmark for excellence in live illustration.

If you would like to compete at their next tournament or attend as a spectator reach out to @illustratedworldseries. For partnership enquiries email:

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said:

“This is more vital funding to protect cultural gems across the country, save jobs and prepare the arts to bounce back. Through Arts Council England we are delivering the biggest ever investment in the arts in record time. Hundreds of millions of pounds are already making their way to thousands of organisations.

“These awards build on our commitment to be here for culture in every part of the country.”

Chair, Arts Council England, Sir Nicholas Serota, said:

“Culture is an essential part of life across the country, helping to support people’s wellbeing through creativity and self-expression, bringing communities together, and fuelling our world class creative industries.

“This latest set of awards from the Culture Recovery Fund builds on those announced recently and will help hundreds of organisations to survive the next few months, ensuring that the cultural sector can bounce back after the crisis. We will continue doing everything we can to support artists and cultural and creative organisations, with further funding to be announced in the coming weeks.”

Founder, Illustrated World Series, Marc Farrington said:

“Ensuring we’re financially resilient is paramount as we continue navigate these tough times. This grant is a lifeline for organisations like ours and will help ensure long-term viability, sustainability and recovery heading into 2021 and beyond.

The Government’s Culture Recovery Fund enables us to continue delivering world class creative tournaments providing a trusted and high visibility platform for freelance illustrators and artists.”

Press release distributed by Pressat on behalf of Illustrated World Series, on Monday 19 October, 2020. For more information subscribe and follow

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Illustrated World Series receives lifeline grant from Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund