£790k support for cultural activity across Scotland

Published: 31 Aug 2018

£792,000 of National Lottery Funding was awarded last month through Creative Scotland’s Open Project Fund; supporting 36 recipients, including individual artists, musicians, writers, theatre makers, festivals and organisations working across the arts, screen and creative industries.

From the Station House Media Unit and Bogha-frois’ support for inclusive music making, to the Aberdeen Mela One World Day and Elaine Gallagher’s Speak for Ourselves, celebrating Scotland’s trans and non-binary community, we are incredibly proud of the difference these projects will make to people’s lives in communities across Scotland.- Iain Munro, Acting Chief Executive

A cross-section of projects and individuals receiving funding in July 2018 includes:

Visual Arts

Among the visual arts awards, Art360 Foundation Scotland has received funding to enable ten outstanding Scottish based artists to work with them in their mission to safeguard at-risk cultural assets for present and future generations by investing in the skills and expertise of artists and estates.

Glasgow-based Many Studios has received funding towards The Gallow Gate 2018-19 Arts Programme. The Gallow Gate hosts exhibitions, international collaborations, discussions, seminars and live art events.

MANY Studios Performance by Ashanti.

Among the visual arts awards, To Step Across the Line, 6 0ctober 2018, a day-long festival presented in partnership with Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum and Arts Centre on North Uist. The festival featuring talks, readings, screenings and performances accompanies an exhibition of new visual arts commission Making Her Mark by Mairéad McClean currently on show at Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum and Arts Centre until 27 October. Invited artists and writers include Lea Anderson, Tara Bergin, Kapka Kassabova, Tess Letham and Andrea Luka Zimmerman.

Making Her Mark by Mairéad McClean - pic by Thomas Zanon-Larcher


The Islay Jazz Festival, 14-16 September 2018, has received funding towards this year’s programme which includes 15 public concerts, featuring many leading Scottish jazz musicians.

Bogha-frois (Rainbow) has received funding towards a project aimed at LGBT+ folk musicians in Scotland and allies. The project will invite musicians to a series of workshops led by some of Scotland’s most prominent LGBT+ folk musicians, where participants will share their stories and experiences and create new work (in English, Scots and Gaelic). The project aims to challenge perceptions of the LGBT+ community and encourage discussion amongst the Scottish folk music industry and beyond about this topic.

Multi-award winning band Talisk received funding to record and produce their second studio album, to be recorded by award-winning engineer Andrea Gobbi and mastered by the Grammy award-winning Brian Lucey.


Aberdeen-based Station House Media Unit (SHMU) has received funding towards the creation of a new community media facility in Woodside, Aberdeen.  Featuring TV, radio and music studios, the new facilities will help build on the organisation’s growing reputation as a centre for creative and community cultural development, youth work and employability.

Murray Dawson, Chief Executive, Station House Media Unit said: “The grant will allow us to increase the numbers participating in our existing programmes and develop exciting new ones – including our new community TV service. This is not just an investment in new equipment, it is an investment in our incredible volunteers and trainees, without whom our organisation would not exist.”


Writer Elaine Gallagher has received funding to develop a new solo performance piece, Speak for Ourselves, chronicling and celebrating Scotland’s trans and non-binary community.

Scotland’s Transatlantic Poetry Journal Dark Horse Magazine and Northwords Now, which showcases writing from across the north of Scotland have received funding to support their next editions.

Independent comic creator and author Kathryn Briggs received funding to exhibit her work at MCM Manchester Comic Con! Briggs has been shortlisted for Best Graphic Novel and Best Up and Coming Talent at the Scottish Independent Comic Book Alliance Awards - both for Magpie.

Kathryn Briggs


Stirling-based Art4you have received funding towards the refurbishment of new premises for an art school with two studios and exhibition space.  The new Art4you facilities will have high quality studio lighting and provision of new resources including a kiln, printing press, storage and utilities. The funding will provide resources to help emerging and established artists develop skills and support artists practice.

Art 4 You

Ceramic artist Lara Scobie has received funding to undertake a period of artistic development and create a new body of work.


Movement artist Martyn Garside has received funding towards the research and development of a new dance/physical theatre work, Concepts of normality/ This is your Life (working title). The work will explore concepts of normality.  Garside will collaborate with filmmakers and authors to build a script of poetry, song, text, live projection and dance resulting in a live performance piece.

Edinburgh-based dance organisation Dance Ihayami have received funding towards the creation of a new Indian classical dance work, Rasa Lila, the sequel to their previous work, Silent Space.


Edinburgh-based Surrogate Productions have received funding towards their theatrical debut, The Guitar Man a one-act play with song that follows the story of a nameless busker and his search to be known. The creative team includes: singer and composer Hanna Tuulikki; set & costume designer Sarah Beaton; dramaturg Eszter Marsalko; lighting designer Emma Jones; artist, sound designer Kevin Murray; and director Nora Wardell.

Independent theatre director Nikki Kalkman has received funding towards a puppetry scratch night in Edinburgh in Spring 2019. Inspired by the Clown Cabaret formula, this project will offer selected emerging and established artists the chance to develop their work with collaborator and puppetry expert Gavin Glover in half day development sessions. This puppetry scratch night will offer artists the opportunity to hone their puppetry skills, present new work, and network with other artists and audiences.

Theatre-makers Vision Mechanics, Nima Séne and Feather Productions have all received funding towards the development and presentation of new work.


Aberdeen Multi-Cultural Centre have received funding towards Aberdeen Mela One World Day 2018. The all-day event which took place on 29 July 2018, celebrated the diverse cultures of Aberdeen and the North East of Scotland.

Dumfries and Galloway-based multi-arts venue CatStrand and Birnam Arts in Dunkeld have both received funding towards their artistic programming.

Birnam Arts

Glas(s) Performance has received funding to develop the short documentary, Eleven. 11 yr old Isaac, who has complex needs, and his mother Philippa are working with Scottish film-maker Geraldine Heaney to create the film which hopes to provide a unique perspective from a child who sees things his own way.   For the past year, Isaac and Philippa have been filming 11 seconds of footage every day to document their daily experiences.  The film will be shared with audiences as part of Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018. The film will be premiered at Tramway’s Unlimited Festival, 15-21 October, and at the charity Touchbase for the community of parents and children that Isaac and Philippa are a part of.

On receiving funding, Jess Thorpe, Co-Artistic Director, Glas(s) Performance said: “We are delighted to be receiving support to present Eleven as part of the Unlimited Festival. As a short film it attempts to document the relationship of Philippa and Issac and their unique experience of the world. We are excited to share this thought-provoking and meaningful project with a diverse range of audiences in Glasgow and look forward to the ongoing dialogue that happens as a result.”

Iain Munro, Acting Chief Executive at Creative Scotland said:

“It’s great to see such a high number of emerging and established individual artists and creative practitioners being supported to develop their practice through these National Lottery awards.

“From the Station House Media Unit and Bogha-frois’ support for inclusive music making, to the Aberdeen Mela One World Day and Elaine Gallagher’s Speak for Ourselves, celebrating Scotland’s trans and non-binary community, we are incredibly proud of the difference these projects will make to people’s lives in communities across Scotland.

“Open Project Funding supports individual artists and organisations to explore, realise and develop their creative potential and widen access to their work through the research, development, production and presentation of work across all art forms.”


Open Project Funding Awards July 2018

View the Open Project Funding Awards made in July 2018, in Excel format.

Notes to Editors

Open Project Funding

Open Project Funding is available to a wide range of organisations and individuals working across Scotland in the arts, screen and creative industries. It supports a broad spectrum of activity including creative and professional development, research and development, production, small capital requirements, touring and collaborations, festivals, arts programming, audience development, etc. A full list of activities supported through this route is set out in the Open Project Funding application guidance. Support is available for projects of different scale and duration with the maximum period of award being set at 2 years. Awards are made in the range £1,000 to £100,000 (or up to £150,000 by exception).  Details of the Open Project Fund and all other Creative Scotland funding can be found on our website at http://www.creativescotland.com/funding/funding-programmes/open-project-funding

Please note the funding awards listed above remain offers of funding until such time as all terms and conditions have been formally accepted and fulfilled by the award recipient. If an award recipient fails to accept any offer, the funding award will be withdrawn and credited to future Open Project Funding Panels.

Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery.

For further information about Creative Scotland please visit www.creativescotland.com. Follow us on Twitter @creativescots, Facebook www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland and Instagram www.instagram.com/creativescots.

Creativity Matters

The arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland deliver real benefits and make a real difference to all our lives regardless of who we are or where we live.  Film, theatre, literature, dance, music, visual art, video games, craft, and the commercial creative industries all contribute to a flourishing society, to our education and learning and to our skills, jobs and economy.

Public funding for the arts, screen and creative industries, through both the Scottish Government and through the National Lottery, helps make life better in Scotland - better for us all as individuals, as communities and as a nation.

As we say in our 10-year plan Unlocking Potential, Embracing Ambition we want Scotland to be a place where the arts, screen and creative industries are valued and recognised, where artists and creative people can flourish and thrive, and where everyone, everywhere, is interested and curious about creativity.

Media Contact

Eilidh Walker, Media Relations & PR Assistant
Creative Scotland
E: Eilidh.Walker@creativescotland.com
T: +44 (0) 131 523 0019
Switchboard: +44 (0) 330 333 2000

Images credits: MANY Studios Performance (photo: Ruth Mitchell) / Making Her Mark by Mairéad McClean (photo:Thomas Zanon-Larcher) / All others courtesy of the projects