Media Release: Creative Scotland invests in environment, health and education residencies

INNOVATIVE residencies for artists working with communities in health, the environment and education have been announced as part of Creative Scotland’s Innovation Fund.

Eleven new Partners residencies, which bring together practicing artists and diverse communities, will begin this year and continue for up to two years.

Residencies with an environmental theme include a project to offer new opportunities for black and minority ethnic communities to explore Scotland’s natural environment, while in the Highlands, a visual artist will work with people experiencing mental ill-health to create an artwork reflecting on environmental issues.

Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop will collaborate with partners including Loanhead Miners’ Welfare in a two-year project to develop artworks in a semi-rural setting.

Health residencies in Glasgow include creating new video works about parent-child relationships based on a theme of Kin; while at BBC Scotland’s Pacific Quay HQ an artist will build links between local communities and the contemporary visual arts.

In Edinburgh, a musician-in-residence will work with adults looking for routes into music education, while the Scottish Book Trust will host a picture book writer to create a new story book for children.

Ewan Brown, chair of Creative Scotland 09 Ltd announced the new residencies and added: “Creative Scotland’s Innovation investment is focused on developing inspirational collaborations between artists, the wider public sector and individual communities.

“Our support for the Partners residency programme provides a unique opportunity for artists to develop new work, as well as offering people who may be new to the arts a route to get involved.”

This two-year Partners programme will be supported by the Creative Scotland Innovation Fund (£500,000) and the National Lottery (£500,000). Partners residencies aim to:

  • Health: develop mental health and community wellbeing particularly in deprived areas or disadvantaged communities;
  • Education: supporting informal learning and particularly people who have moved away from education; and
  • Environment: exploring and improving the sustainability of Scotland’s environment including green spaces, urban landscapes and the natural environment.

Creative Scotland’s Innovation Fund aims to:

  • Support Scotland’s artists by funding new work, inspirational collaborations and residencies;
  • Encourage and support innovative working between public agencies and artists;
  • Extend practical help to new creative entrepreneurs; and
  • Support and sustain Scotland’s artistic community and economy now , at this time of recession, by offering new ways of getting funds into the hands of artists and creative practitioners across a wide range of disciplines

The 11 Partners residencies supported are:

Aberdeen City Council, in partnership with Townscape Heritage Initiative: Leafing the Green is a two-year writer’s residency working with residents of the city’s Torry area to explore environmental themes through creative writing and studying The Green in the historic heart of Aberdeen. Amount awarded £50,000.

Artlink Edinburgh and the Lothians, in partnership with NHS Lothian Children and Adolescent Mental Health: Artlink and artist Steven Hollingsworth will work with a core group of 20 participants, their carers and relatives to explore the potential of functional (aesthetic) artworks for people with severe learning disabilities and/or autism in the context of their lives.  Amount awarded £48,780.

BBC Scotland, in partnership with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and Culture and Sport Glasgow: A contemporary visual artist will be based at the BBC building at Pacific Quay for 16 months. During the residency, the artist will work with communities in the Glasgow South area to increase their involvement in contemporary arts. Amount awarded £30,000.

Centre for Contemporary Art, in partnership with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and the University of the West of Scotland: Based at Glagow’s CCA, visual artist Donna Rutherford will create several new video performance works on the theme of Kin. A core group of 12 participants will develop stories which explore their attitudes to parent-child relationships in later life. Four video performances at the CCA will be complemented by listening posts sited in hospitals and clinics. Amount awarded: £29,529.

East Dunbartonshire Council and Hillhead Housing Association: Two artists will work with residents of Hillhead, Kirkintilloch on contemporary sculpture projects, while developing their own practice. Artist, Rachel Mimiec, will provide project support and, through a series of community workshops, it is hoped that a permanent sculpture workshop can be established. Amount awarded £50,000.

Greater Easterhouse Arts Company, in partnership with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde: A two-year drama residency at The Platform in Easterhouse, working with older people from the city’s East End to create a range of new writing, theatre and storytelling works. As well as developing their own theatre practice, the artist will encourage older people from the area’s day centres, clubs and residential care homes to make greater use of The Platform’s facilities. Amount awarded:  £45,000.

Highland Print Studio in partnership with NHS Highland Community Mental Health Service Trust: An artist will develop their practice while working with people experiencing mental ill health to create an artwork on an environmental theme. Twenty-five participants will be involved in this year-long residency. Amount awarded: £26,934.

Midlothian Council, in partnership with Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop, Mayfield and Easthouses Development Trust, Loanhead Miners Welfare, Midlothian Advice and Resource Centre: Midlothian Council will host a two-year residency programme working in partnership with Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop, local community development trusts and voluntary organisations in a semi-rural area. The resident artist will work with communities to create artworks that reflect their surroundings. Amount awarded: £50,000

Scottish Book Trust, in partnership with Home-Start: A picture book writer will work within a community for nine months to work with parents and children to create a new picture book. Young children will enjoy an early experience of creating their own illustrated stories while the resident artist develops their own work. Twenty-six workshops are planned. Amount awarded: £50,000

The Edinburgh Mela in partnership with the Forestry Commission and Scottish Natural Heritage: Shared Territories is a partnership between Edinburgh Mela, the Forestry Commission Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage for a 16-month residency for a visual artist and a theatre professional. The artists will develop their own work at North Edinburgh Arts Centre, while using the arts as a way for black and minority ethnic groups to explore Scotland’s natural environment. Nine workshops are planned. Amount awarded:  £49,680.

WHALE, in partnership with Napier University, Stevenson College and City of Edinburgh Council: WHALE will host a musician-in-residence over two years using the Music Box facilities at Stevenson College.  A core group of 45 participants will be involved throughout the project, which is focused on creating routes into music education for adults and will be open to anyone who has an interest in playing or performing music. Amount awarded £43,387.


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