In February Laura Dicken was selected as the successful recipient of an International Bursary offered jointly by New Art West Midlands and GRAIN Projects and developed in partnership with Aarhus Billedkunstcenter / Aarhus Center for Visual Art (AaBKC) and Galleri Image.

Due to the pandemic, Laura was unfortunately unable to travel to Aarhus, Denmark to undertake the period of research supported by the bursary. However, we are pleased to be able to share an update on the opportunity:

You Are Another Me is an inclusive, socially engaged arts project which explores the experiences of women (and female identifying individuals) from a variety of backgrounds who have, for different reasons, migrated alone. Laura has developed this project with the support of the bursary award. She took an extended amount of time for research and development over the Summer to radically adjust her practice so that she can still co-author and co-create with participants in a meaningful way under the new remote circumstances brought on by Covid restrictions. This has been achieved by embracing platforms such as Zoom, Skype, email and WhatsApp. Working closely with the Aarhus Billedkunstcenter Project Manager, the artist has made connections with local organisations in Aarhus who support migrant women and has invited potential participants to take part in the project. Laura will still collaborate with participants through conversations, shared images and storytelling, but will now do so digitally rather than through in person workshops.

Laura was awarded the International Bursary 2020, to make work in collaboration with women in Aarhus, Denmark, to undertake a period of research supported by the bursary and to travel and meet with participants. Instead of being able to travel this year she has found creative solutions to continue working on her proposal remotely. As an artist who works almost exclusively with analogue techniques the digital shifts will significantly affect Laura’s output; instead of a series of analogue social documentary portraits, a multi-disciplinary approach has been adopted to create a series of digital portraits, allowing her to experiment with sound, moving image and photo montage animation.

Laura will be delivering an artists talk at Galleri Image and Aarhus Billedkunstcenter remotely in the new year.

An update on the International Bursary awarded to Laura Dicken earlier in the year. The bursary has been offered jointly by New Art West Midlands and GRAIN Projects and developed in partnership with Aarhus Billedkunstcenter / Aarhus Center for Visual Art (AaBKC) and Galleri Image.

Work by Laura Dicken

New Art West Midlands, Grain Projects, Aarhus Billedkunstcenter and Galleri Image are delighted to announce that Laura Dicken has been selected as the successful recipient of the International Bursary 2020. Laura will now undertake a period of research in Aarhus, Denmark, in March 2020.

 

Work by Laura Dicken

Laura’s research proposal was selected by representatives from each of the four organisations from a batch of very strong and exciting proposals. The panel were particularly impressed by the focused, specific approach Laura took to her proposal and by the clear case she made for the impact of the bursary upon the development of her practice.

Laura’s work ‘You Are Another Me’ explores migration through the lens of the female (and female identifying) experience. The project includes portraits and stories of women from a broad spectrum of socio-economic backgrounds and ethnicities who have, for various reasons, migrated alone. By facilitating the telling of these disparate stories she hopes to bring new voices to the migration narrative and to highlight not only the vast differences but to celebrate and illuminate the many similarities. Having worked with participants in Copenhagen, in a pilot of this project, Laura is now able to use her research methodologies to connect with communities in Aarhus, to promote understanding, compassion, international cooperation and collaboration.

Laura’s ongoing body of work is a series of projects which are collaborations with individuals, communities and arts organisations. Through her work Laura hopes to create opportunities for previously untold stories to be shared authentically and with agency. Her process is built around meaningful connection, conversation, workshops and photography. Laura is interested in illuminating the shared human experience and celebrating the extraordinary ordinary.

 

New Art West Midlands, Grain Projects, Aarhus Billedkunstcenter and Galleri Image are delighted to announce that Laura Dicken has been selected as the successful recipient of the International Bursary 2020.

100 Masters, a landmark campaign from Creative Black Country, the organisation behind the much celebrated Desi Pubs project, is looking to identify and profile the best contemporary craftspeople, makers and thinkers from the Black Country area. Anneka French caught up with Creative Producer, Liam Smyth, to find out more.

Working with public nominations from across the Black Country, the 100 Masters project will culminate in an expo at Starworks in Wolverhampton in November this year. It includes presentations from the individuals selected, as well as the results of a series of artist commissions.

Nominations so far include Sandwell-born artist Gillian Wearing, Walsall’s Paralympic swimming champion Ellie Simmonds OBE, Wolverhampton journalist and author Sathnam Sanghera and David Pearce, the Walsall schoolboy who designed the new £1 coin emblem. The full list of nominations will be reviewed by representatives from the community, with the selected masters revealed in July.

A number of artists have also been commissioned to make work in response to the project’s nominated masters and the context of the project more widely. Artists include photographer Laura Dicken, performer and video artist Amelia Beavis-Harrison, digital hackerspace Urban Hax and Juneau Projects, who bring a wealth of experience working with multi-disciplinary projects to 100 Master. As lead artists, Juneau Projects, will use augmented reality animations to bring the project to life. A special collaboration with the Express and Star newspaper, for example,  is providing an interactive platform that will raise the profile of the project, particularly with audiences who are less familiar with creative and visual arts projects.

100 Masters aims to be a celebration of the excellence of creative work already happening within the Black Country and hopes to be a driver for the future development and retention of creative talent.

Liam Smyth, Creative Producer at Creative Black Country, said:

“We are looking to increase aspirations in the local area through 100 Masters. We would like to grow the number of master makers and thinkers within the Black Country. It’s an industrial area of course and there is a lot of attention paid to its design and manufacturing heritage but there is less focus upon current creative practice. We want to acknowledge this and unearth the secrets of creativity and making that are happening today, to show people that the Black Country is an ideal place to live and create amazing work.”

Applications to nominate a ‘master’ from the Black Country are open until 30 June: http://www.100masters.co.uk/nominate-a-master/

 

100 Masters, a landmark campaign from Creative Black Country, is looking to profile the best contemporary craftspeople, makers and thinkers from the Black Country. We speak to Creative Producer, Liam Smyth.