Media Release: £2m Open Project Funding awards boost cultural activity across Scotland


£2m Open Project Funding awards boost
cultural activity across Scotland

 99 awards of between £1,500 and £100,000 made to
individual artists and organisations from Feb – March 2015.

CREATIVE Scotland has awarded more than £2m Open Project Funding in February and March 2015 to 99 individual artists and organisations working across the arts, screen and creative industries, in awards of between £1,500 and £100,000.

In music, significant awards have been to sound: Scotland’s Festival of New Music 2015 (£130,000); Mr McFall’s Chamber (£80,000); Scottish Music Industry Association (£75,000) and AC Projects (£79,000).

AC Projects’ flagship event is the annual contemporary music festival, Counterflows.

On receiving the award, Alasdair Campbell, Ddrector of AC Projects, said: “It is really encouraging to receive this award from Creative Scotland for our 2015-16 programme of challenging, inspiring and exciting new music.

“This award is a positive step in the development and sustainability of AC Projects and of the networks of international and local artists and audiences that are committed to furthering the exposure and development of new music.”

In dance, Bodysurf Scotland will continue to bring world class contemporary dance to Moray (£83,000); Caroline Bowditch will undertake an extensive tour of ‘Falling in love with Frida’ which explores the life, loves and legacy of Frida Kahlo (£80,000); and Company Chordelia will create  new work based on Russian ballet dancer and choreographer Vaslav Nijinsky (£69,450).

In literature, Edinburgh-based Neu! Reekie! will curate, produce and present ‘THIS IS SCOTLAND’ – a year-long programme of literary salons showcasing writers and poets of national repute complimented by new animation, music, dance and art (£40,000).

Michael Pedersen and Kevin Williamson, co-directors, Neu! Reekie!, said: “Our new year-long project intends to raise the bar, with our most diverse programme to date.

“We’re spreading our wings to every corner of Scotland and beyond – with unique Neu! Reekie! shows planned from Thurso to Tokyo, and with a batch of new event commissions.

“Creative Scotland’s belief in, and support for, this project has been a huge boost for us, has opened up new creative possibilities and collaborations, and will be a solid foundation for us to build on.”

Funding has been awarded to 19 festivals across the country including Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival; Edinburgh Mela; Bloody Scotland: Scotland’s International Crime Writing Festival; Lammermuir Festival; The Merchant City Festival; Africa in Motion: Scotland’s African Film Festival; and an eight month long Festival of Architecture from March – October 2016.

Scotland’s arts and culture will be promoted across a number of international platforms including profile at Jazzahead! Bremen, Germany; Art Fair Supermarket in Stockholm, Sweden; Folk Alliance International Music Fair, Kansas, USA; Adelaide Fringe Festival, Australia; Auckland International Arts Festival, New Zealand; and Design Days Dubai through these awards.

Awards have been made to a number of individual artists and organisations to enable them to research, develop and create work: writer, George Gunn will research, write and develop a play for the theatre (£5,000); and composer, Martin Green will research and develop new work exploring ways to combine and stage live music with animated film, in partnership with animation duo White Robot, songwriters Anaïs Mitchell and Karine Polwart, and musicians Dominic Aitchison (Mogwai), Adrian Utley (Portishead), John Smith and Becky Unthank.

Film makers will attend EURODOC in France to develop their films: Felipe Bustos Sierra will present NAE PASARAN – a documentary about Scottish factory workers who protested against Chilean dictator Pinochet and Flore Cosquer will present Freedom Fields – a documentary about Libya’s first national women’s football team.

Janet Archer, chief executive of Creative Scotland, said:

“I’m delighted that we are able to support such a creatively rich and diverse range of projects across Scotland.

“Open Project Funding supports organisations and individuals to explore, realise and develop their creative potential, widen access to their work, and enrich Scotland’s reputation as a distinctive creative nation.

“From the important work that sound festival undertake in commissioning new work and promoting new music from Scotland to a global audience; to individual artists being able to take time to research, develop and create work, these awards cover a whole range of practice and scale.

“I’m particularly pleased that we are able to operate the Open Project Fund without deadlines. Demand is high, so we are allocating budgets across the year, which means that both individuals and organisations can apply at a time that suits them. This is something that has been asked for and we are responding to.

“Over £1.7m of these awards have been allocated from National Lottery funds. Alongside funding from the Scottish Government, The National Lottery forms a vital part of funding support for the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland and it is important to recognise this.”

A full list of awards is available here.

Details of the Open Project Fund and all other Creative Scotland funding can be found on our website at

Open Project Funding commenced on 1 October, 2014 and sits alongside Regular and Targeted Funding as one of Creative Scotland’s three funding routes.

There are no deadlines attached to Open Project Funding. Applications are reviewed on a weekly basis and decisions provided within eight weeks for applications less than £15,000 and 12 weeks for applications more than £15,000. This means that individuals and organisations can apply at a time that suits their needs and their practice.

This new funding route, launched in October 2014, reflects Creative Scotland’s commitment to simplification and clarity and replaces multiple funding routes that previously existed. Applicants can apply for funding amounts between £1,000 and £100,000 (or up to £150,000 by exception) for projects lasting up to two years.

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. Open Project Funding replaces most of the project based funding programmes previously operated by Creative Scotland.

Open Project Funding 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 INSERT LINK. Support is available for projects of different scale and duration with the maximum period of award being set at two years. Awards are made in the range £1,000 to £100,000 (or up to £150,000 by exception).

Open Project Funding is one strand of Creative Scotland’s funding model which was announced on 9 April 2014: ( and reflects Creative Scotland’s commitment to introduce a clear and simple funding approach that provides access to both long-term and project funding for individuals and organisations, as set out in our Action Plan for Change, published in March 2013 (

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

Follow us @creativescots and

Media Contact

Sophie Bambrough

Media Relations & PR Officer

Creative Scotland


T: +44 (0) 131 523 0015

M: +44 (0) 774 760 6146

Switch Board: +44 (0) 330 333 2000.

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