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Over £440,000 support for cultural activity across Scotland

Published: 31 Jan 2019

Over £440,000 of National Lottery funding was awarded last month to 31 recipients through Creative Scotland’s Open Project Fund, including individual artists, musicians, writers, theatre makers, festivals and organisations working across the arts, screen and creative industries.

The latest range of projects to have received support include radio station Radiophrenia broadcasting from Glasgow’s CCA; Shared Stories creative writing project across Cairngorms National Park throughout 2019; UZ Arts’ continued membership of IN SITU; Lovely Tyrants and Invisible Women visual arts programme from Glasgow’s Civic Rooms; new albums from Mhairi Hall and Ewen Henderson; visual art works from Tim Dodds, Juliana Capes and Joanna Kessel; a new play from spoken word theatre company, In The Works’; Independent Venue Week, Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival, Aberdeen Jazz Festival, Edinburgh’s Tradfest and the continuation of Jazz at The Blue Lamp, Aberdeen, amongst others.

Iain Munro, Acting Chief Executive at Creative Scotland said: “It’s thanks to National Lottery players that we’re able to support these talented artists, programmers and organisations to create and present work to audiences across Scotland.

“These awards also enable artists to take their work overseas and showcase Scotland’s creativity at festivals and cultural events across globe, which is key to ensuring Scotland remains a distinctive creative nation connected to the world.”

Further details on individual projects:

UZ Arts’ receive support towards their continued membership of IN SITU, the European Performing Arts Network including 20 partners in 12 European countries. Neil Butler CEO and Artistic Director UZ Arts said: “Creative Scotland supported UZ in establishing the Insitu network. Their continued support means that UZ can continue to maintain and develop relationships between European and Scottish artists and producers at this critical time in our relationship with Europe.”

Mark Vernon has received funding towards the continuation of Radiophrenia, a temporary art radio station exploring current trends in sound and transmission arts broadcasting from the Centre for Contemporary Arts in Glasgow. Vernon commented: "We are delighted that, with the support of Creative Scotland, we can return to the airwaves to bring the fourth edition of our unique festival of radio art to the people of Scotland and listeners around the world. As in previous years there will be an exciting and innovative blend of radio experiments, free live events and a series of community projects".

In Literature

Shared Stories: A Year in the Cairngorms - a creative writing project will take place in the Cairngorms National Park throughout 2019. The project will be facilitated by writer-in-residence, Merryn Glover.

Outdoor Learning Officer Cairngorms National Park Authority, Alan Smith said: “The project has come about from the fact that we all know – that the well-being of the natural environment and the people of the Park is inter-dependent. This project aims to delve deeper into that relationship through creative writing and story-telling activities with participants creating pieces of writing that inspire and give insights into our relationship with the landscape and wildlife – along with outdoor experiences in the Park – to a wider audience.”

In Music

Composer and performer Lucie Treacher and multi-instrumentalist Joaquim Badia Arumi, will create Cryosphere (meaning the frozen surface of the earth), a new sonic composition recorded in disused oil tunnels deep in the hillside, above the industrial town of Invergordon in the Highlands. Recently re-discovered, these tunnels currently hold the world record for the longest echo in any man-made structure. The soundtrack will be accompanied by a film.

One of Scotland's leading pianists, Mhairi Hall receives support towards her new album, Airs. The album will feature a combination of old Gaelic and Scots traditional songs, alongside newly composed pieces inspired by the ancient airs. Hall said: “My solo album Airs is due to be released in Autumn 2019.  This is a hugely exciting collaborative project combining music, contemporary art and film, each inspiring the other to create something unique, beautiful and profoundly Scottish.”

Scottish musicians Graeme Stephen (guitar), Hardeep Deerhe (tabla) and saxophonist/piper Fraser Fifield receive support to collaborate with Dutch musicians as part of the Going Dutch’ programme. The resulting work LoLanders will be presented at high profile international events and venues including Celtic Connections, Glasgow International Jazz Festival, Amsterdam’s Bimhuis and Rotterdam’s In Jazz festival.

Ewen Henderson - founding member of Mànran – receives support to record his new album, Bogadh / Immersion. The album will feature original compositions inspired by personal and family experiences alongside material passed down through bearers of Gaelic music and tradition.



Ellie Griffiths and Geraldine Heaney will attend, present work and deliver workshops at the Inclusive Arts Festival, Tokyo. Griffiths creates sensory performances for and with audiences with complex needs, and Heaney makes inclusive film work as well and co-directing KOR! Records, an independent record label, running experimental music and noise projects for young people with additional support needs.

In Theatre

Spoken word theatre company, In the Works has received funding towards the development a new 30-minute show.  A collaboration between Bibi June and Ross McFarlane, the piece discusses being young in our modern society through a story of two flatmates and best friends who made disparate choices but share a life regardless.

McFarlane commented: “Creative Scotland’s Open Fund has given us the time and space to produce a show which demonstrates what we do and who we are, as artists and as a company. Make/Shift is politically relevant, while being entertaining and fundamentally rooted in how people are carving out their own space in the world."

Emerging children’s theatre director, Lisa Wilson receives support to research a new piece of work based on the physics of colour-mixing as a core concept for early years theatre.

Al Seed has received professional development funding to incorporate new skills related to new technologies, especially in the field of the video games industry into his visual theatre practice.

In Visual Arts

Glasgow gallery Civic Room has received support towards the realisation of Of Lovely Tyrants and Invisible Women visual arts programme. Addressing themes of spatial politics, gender and racial hierarchies, this year-long programme will run from February 2019 featuring four solo exhibitions and associated events from artists Lauren Printy Currie, Ashanti Harris, Thulani Rachia and Marija Nemcenko. Civic Room is working with design agency After the News, Centre for Contemporary Arts Glasgow and advisory including Sarah McCrory, in collaboration with community groups and public audiences - to examine gender, race, architecture and contemporary art.

Ilana Halperin will develop a new international cross-disciplinary project between Yamaguchi, Japan and Scotland with Aberdeen-based curator Naoko Mabon. Drawing inspiration from the geological rock cycle, the project highlights the remarkable landscape of Yamaguchi, as part of an upcoming bid to designate Akiyoshidai as an International Geopark.

Halperin said: “It is deeply heartening that there is still space to develop new work which aims to melt borders (whether territorial, material, or across discipline), in order to articulate through culture new ways of cultivating our understanding of and relationship with our fragile world.” while Naoko Mabon commented: “This will be our second collaborative project connecting Japan and Scotland after Geologic Intimacy (Yu no Hana) between Beppu and Aberdeen (2015-2017), which was also supported by Open Project Funding.”



Visual artists Tim Dodds, Juliana Capes and Joanna Kessel all receive funding to research develop and present a new body of work.

Capes, who makes installations and durational artwork that challenges expectations about public artwork said: "I am totally delighted to be supported in this way, support which will allow me to focus on research, collaboration and the development of new work."

Kessel will present a solo exhibition of new sculptural objects and architectural mosaic and cast concrete artworks within Collect Open - a platform for 15 individual artists to show ambitious and conceptual craft-led installations within Collect, he international art fair at the Saatchi Gallery, London (28 Feb - 3 Mar 2019).  Kessel commented: “I’m delighted to have been selected by the Crafts Council to showcase new work within Collect Open 2019. It’s an honour to be the sole representative of Scotland within this section.  The exhibition has given me the focus to create radically new work.”

In Festivals and Events

Festivals and event open project funding has supported events across the country as part of Independent Venue Week (28 Jan – 3 Feb 2019) and specific festivals in Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival (24 May - 2 June 2019), Aberdeen Jazz Festival (21 - 31 March 2019), and Edinburgh’s Tradfest (26 April -  6 May 2019).

Douglas Robertson, Edinburgh Tradfest Programmer said: “Scotland’s traditional music scene is thriving. The calibre of our home-grown artists is exceptional and the demand from audiences is increasing all the time. This is why we wanted Edinburgh Tradfest to continue. Thanks to our funders we’ve been able to put together a very strong programme that includes some of the very best musicians from Scotland and around the world.”

Alan Morrison, Head of Music, Creative Scotland said of Independent Venue Week: "The buzz of seeing a fantastic live band at close quarters is something that every music fan will cherish for years to come. Creative Scotland is delighted to partner again with Independent Venue Week, extending the reach of this vibrant campaign further across the country. Our grassroots venues are at the heart of our music scene and there`s no better way of celebrating the work they do, week in week out, than to get down the front and join the action. "

Open Project Funding Awards December 2018

Read and download December's Open Project Fund announcements in .xlsx format.

Notes to Editors

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 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 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 @creativescots and www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland

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.

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