In Summer 2018, Site Gallery, together with project partners Yorkshire Artspace, S1 Artspace, Bloc Projects and Museums Sheffield, were awarded £375,000 by Freelands Foundation to run Platform, as part of The Freelands Artist Programme.
The Freelands Artist Programme was created to support and enhance collaboration between 80 emerging artists and four arts organisations, to build and strengthen professional arts practice outside of London. This new programme provide funding, totalling £1.5 million over a five-year period, to organisations in each of the four nations in the UK. Each institution will curate a series of two-year programmes with five artists annually, allowing those artists to receive much needed support across both creative and professional development.
The first five artists to take part in Platform in Sheffield were announced during our opening weekend celebrations in September 2018:
Alison J Carr, Zoyander Street, Yuen Fong Ling, Sian Williams and Lucy Vann, will participate in a work-in- progress show hosted by one of the project partners in Sheffield as well as a show at the Freelands Foundation in London. The selection panel was comprised of Paul Morrison, Harold Offeh, Sharna Jackson and Angelica Sule.
The Freelands Artist Programme is a new visual arts funding programme that provides over £1.5 million support to national institutions looking to champion emerging talent. The UK-wide initiative is designed to support and grow regional arts ecosystems by fostering long-term relationships and collaborations between emerging artists and arts organisations across the country. Four projects have been selected for each of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Site Gallery will be the lead organisation for England.
Sheffield is England’s 4th largest city with an estimated population of 2000 artists. A significant art school, a vibrant D.I.Y. creative scene, artist-focused institutions and affordable rents has produced a supportive, engaged and well-networked art scene. Like most regional centres it is not possible to exclusively make a living as an artist
“The Freelands Artist Programme enables Site Gallery to offer artists an extraordinary opportunity to develop their practice. We’ve worked hard to learn what we can do to support artists to thrive in the city and this project builds upon many years of investing in artists and partnership working. It’s a huge accolade and the impact will be phenomenal.”