Micro-commission open call – thank you

NEWS | POSTED ON 23 October 2019
Two years ago my colleague Tom and I made some initial plans towards what would become Edgelandia. We wanted to bring focus onto an area of creativity that Penned in the Margins has championed in numerous ways over the years. The first three pieces helped to create the foundation of the project, what it would look like, how it would feel going out to a wider audience. Now, the second phase of artists are shoring up that platform, crystallising the shape of the project as a whole. 

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Our plan is to have three artists for each year of the project, one of which is found through an open call. We decided early on that it was immensely important, when producing a project that looks outward to all corners of the country, to make sure we could find artists beyond our limited reach, and that they too would have access to a project such as this. I hoped for at least a handful of artists to send ideas over, but I could not have foreseen the number of interested creative practitioners and the quality of the submissions.

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The main reason for writing this is to publicly say a huge thank you to every artist that submitted a proposal for the open call. By the deadline we had 167 applicants from across the UK and further afield, which made choosing a single artist a huge and complex task! We worked in stages, highlighting the proposals that sat firmly in the centre of the brief, those that connected strongly to a particular place, crafting a longlist of about fifty artists. I can say with all honesty that every single piece on this longlist deserved a platform. Reading through the proposals was a joy, and knowing that there are so many artists working in innovative ways and across numerous media, is enriching and energising! With much to-and-fro we reached a shortlist of twelve proposals. At this stage it purely came down to finding a piece that best encapsulated the Edgelandia project as a whole, and could be realised to the best ability within the limitations of the micro-commission. We are excited to publicly announce the winning artist at the end of this week.

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On a personal note, having the chance to connect with so many artists that I would never have had the chance to otherwise is an invaluable and unique experience, which I am thoroughly looking forward to repeating each year!

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Nick Murray
Associate Producer, Penned in the Margins