Participants announced for our Artists’ International Delegation 2018, a partnership between Castlefield Gallery and a-n

Posted on 22 February 2018

Castlefield Gallery is pleased to announce that a delegation of artists from Manchester and the North West will travel to Budapest to meet with artist-led projects and experience the Hungarian capital’s grassroots art scene, traveling overland via Munich. The trip will take place between 17 – 24 March 2018 and is being made possible thanks to eight funded places supported by Castlefield Gallery’s Lee Artists’ International Bursary Fund and a-n The Artists Information Company.

The eight successful artists selected to be part of the delegation are: Jamie Allan, Olivia Glasser, Grace Harrison, Laura Harrison, Lucy HarveyGregory HerbertAnna Horton and John Powell-Jones.

An additional place has been awarded to writer Bob Dickinson to join the trip. Dickinson is particularly interested in researching critical writing in Hungary, and the possibilities for developing future links between artists and writers from the UK and Hungary, looking to find common ground in how each group is responding to politically challenging contexts.

Led by Castlefield Gallery with assistance from a-n, the artists’ delegation is the first of several partnership projects that the two organisations will jointly deliver over 2018 and 2019. This first initiative is aimed at providing support and talent development opportunities, facilitating international experiences and encouraging exchange for artists in the North West of England.

The delegation is conceived as a mini-residency within which participants will encounter aspects of two different contemporary European art scenes as well as the historical and socio-political contexts that artists in Germany and Hungary are currently working in. The stop in Munich will consist of a number of gallery visits, while five days in Budapest will allow for a range of encounters with galleries and artist-run projects, including a visit to the artists’ town of Szentendre.

Castlefield Gallery’s Director Helen Wewiora states:

Our partnership with a-n goes from strength to strength, and I am delighted to see what we can achieve by working together. It’s also great to see how we are able to meaningfully use the generous donations made by individuals and companies to the gallery, in ways that promise legacy. It feels timely to be delivering this delegation now, and supporting artists to learn from one another on an international basis. I am particularly looking forward to experiencing the delegation remotely via the artists’ planned posts and blogs during and after their trip, also seeing how they will share and create direct benefit for their peers in the North West, especially those attached to some of our key studios in the region. As a group the selected artists bring a rich mix of thinking, interests, ideas and backgrounds, and they will undoubtedly benefit from sharing this experience together.      

Places have been made available through Castlefield Gallery’s Lee Artists’ International Bursary Fund and supported by a-n. The Lee Artists’ Bursary Fund was established from donations given to mark the end of Kwong Lee’s eleven-year Directorship of Castlefield Gallery, and doubled thanks to Catalyst Evolve Funding.

Arts Council England’s Catalyst Evolve Funding is an initiative from Arts Council England supporting arts and cultural organisations to grow private giving and build resilience. This means that, between 2016 and August 2019, Arts Council England will match every pound Castlefield Gallery, a registered charity, secures from new individual donations, Trust & Foundation sources, and corporate sponsorship on a 1:1 basis.

Kwong Lee, Castlefield Gallery Director (2005-2016), says:

I am really pleased that Castlefield Gallery has developed this new opportunity for artists to connect with their peers and galleries in the Budapest art scene. It is well understood that face to face meetings facilitate knowledge exchange that can lead to longer term creative collaborations. I am proud to be associated with the International Bursary Fund and wish the selected artists an interesting and fruitful journey.

Fundraising for the next year of the Lee Artists’ International Bursary Fund has already begun, and Castlefield Gallery will be announcing further ways that people can help us double–their-money in Spring 2018.

The artists will be accompanied by delegation co-producer Anett Gecov, a London-based art historian and project manager who currently works with New Generation Centre in London, a Hungarian organisation which provides cross-disciplinary talent support for young people in the United Kingdom and in Hungary. Anett has worked in art galleries in Budapest and has an exhaustive knowledge of the Hungarian art scene.