Sunderland Culture unveils new Creative Fellowships

Sunderland Culture has announced the latest recipients of its Creative Development Fellowships scheme.

Launched in June 2019, the Creative Development Fellowships aim to support artistic development within the city. The Fellowships enable each recipient to develop their creative practice in a range of diverse ways – from funding practical tools and equipment, mentorship, business support and courses, to completing a music album or exhibiting work around the country.

Laura Brewis, Producer for Artist Development and Creative Economy at Sunderland Culture, said:

“We launched the second round of Creative Fellowships in January and they’re a great way for independent creative practitioners, artists, producers and cultural or heritage organisations to apply for support of up to £1,000 to help them move to the next stage in their practice or organisational development.”

“In our first round we awarded 14 Creative Development Fellowships to support Sunderland artists in developing their practice, and supported 13 residencies and commissions. We helped individual practitioners successfully apply for more than £125,000 of additional funding. Together with Sunderland BME Network, Digital Catapult and North East Business Innovation Centre, (BIC) we also launched a programme of cultural industries support, including workshops, training, mentoring and advice surgeries.”

The latest recipients range from a broad selection of creative disciplines and also represent practitioners at varying stages of their careers – from emerging to established.

They are: writer James Whitman, artist Lyn Killeen, artist Nigel Morgan, singer Alison Barton, musician Rebecca Young, actor Christina Dawson, dancer Emily Wallace, glass maker Erin Dickson, glass maker Anna Selway, artist Christie Chan, artist Helen Schell and artist Michaela Wetherall.

Laura added:

“This round of Creative Development Fellowships was very much built off the success of the first round.  We had a great quality of applicants and the fellowship offered the opportunity for the successful recipients to develop their creative practice and take them from point A to point B.”

“This could be through training, experimentation with an approach, collaboration, or mentorship that otherwise would be challenging to access without the fellowship’s support.”

“The applicants demonstrated clear ties to Sunderland, ways in which the proposed activity would develop their practice, and consideration for how their practice could be taken forward after the activity had ended.”

Glass maker Erin Dickson said she was grateful to Sunderland Culture for the Fellowship:

“It will enable me to explore the use of VR technologies to find opportunities to develop new work about Northern identity, as well as re-digitize physical works and open them up to new audiences. Harnessing the immersive nature of VR, I will be able to create environments to both ‘exhibit’ the work, but also create spaces which are themselves artworks.”

For more artist opportunities, available throughout the year, visit our Opportunities page.

Main image: Glass maker, Erin Dickson.