Sunderland Culture announces the 14 creative talents chosen to help artistic development in city

The first 14 creative talents to get a helping hand from a new cultural initiative have been chosen.

Tuesday, 24th September 2019, 4:45 pm
Sunderland Maritime Heritage are one of the lucky fellowship recipients

Sunderland Culture have announced the recipients of their inaugural Sunderland Creative Development Fellowships.

Launched in June 2019, the Fellowships support artistic development within Sunderland and over 60 applications were submitted from creative practitioners from across the borough.

14 Fellowships were awarded in total, including eight to graduates from the University of Sunderland.

Fellowship recipient Rosie Vleugals

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The Fellowships will enable individuals 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 wanted to launch a programme that offered support to creative practitioners and organisations in Sunderland to develop themselves and think about what might make them more resilient as practitioners or move them to the next stage of their career.”

Recipients range from a broad selection of creative disciplines including writing, performance, curatorship, photography, illustration, design and Sunderland Maritime Heritage, and also represent practitioners at varying stages of their careers - from emerging to established.

Rachel Welford, who specialises in making glass artworks for architectural settings and is in the final stage of a PhD at the University of Sunderland, said:

“Although the creative aspects of my art are going well, the business and financial side of what I do needs improving! So I'll be using the Creative Development Bursary for mentoring and business support to improve profitability and growth.”

Many recipients intend to use this opportunity to develop their practice to share with the community. These include Susan Loughlin, who aims to design and test a model for a range of participatory art opportunities for local people.

Aerial circus artist Rosie Vleugals will be attending a professional course and purchasing safety equipment to use for performing, teaching and training.

Rosie said: “I have been training in aerial circus arts for the past six years. Once I started, it quickly became a passion. This help from Sunderland Culture will assist me in taking the next step.”