Five artists have been named as the first group to be supported by a new scheme that champions blossoming creative talent.
Emerging artists Aideen Doran, Rosie O’Grady, Sulaïman Majali, Stephanie Mann, Tako Taal – all of them Scotland-based – are the inaugural cohort of a programme run by Talbot Rice Gallery, the University of Edinburgh’s contemporary art gallery.
Included in the group is Edinburgh College of Art (ECA) alumna Stephanie Mann who graduated in 2013 with an MFA in Contemporary Art Practice.
The new Talbot Rice Residents Programme invites the artists into the University and gives them space, time, and support to significantly develop their artistic practice and career.
The scheme is part of the Freelands Artist Programme, a new UK-wide initiative that is providing more than £1.5 million to support national institutions to champion emerging talent.
Stephanie, who is based in Edinburgh, works mainly in print, moving image and the written word, but retains a keen interest in the sculptural potential that objects hold.
As part of the residency, Stephanie will have access to the University’s rich research environment and collections. The residents will be given financial, curatorial and technical support, and facilities - such as workshops and studios - will be made available.
There will also be the opportunity for collaboration with members of the University community.
Stephanie said: “The residency opens up the possibility to meet with academics and students from across the University. The University plays host to an incredible network of people who are deeply passionate about their subject. I’m so excited to make connections between their work and my own. I’m hoping that this is not a one-way experience, however, and I’d aim to achieve a sort of cross-pollination of ideas."
She continued: “The five years since I graduated from my MFA have gone by so quickly. Over the years, I have been collecting ideas - tangible things and less tangible things - and I’m excited to have the space and time to rigorously examine them. It’s almost like having a big cupboard in your house that over time gets filled with stuff, and now I have the opportunity to take it all out, look through it, question whether I need a new shelving system, throw things out and ideally put a lot of new stuff in! It will allow me to form a more robust foundation for my practice that will help support my career as it develops.”
About the Freelands Artist Programme
Freelands Artist Programme (FAP) was awarded to four institutions across the UK. Alongside Talbot Rice Gallery, funding was awarded to PS2 in Belfast, Northern Ireland; Site Gallery in Sheffield, England and g39 in Cardiff, Wales. One of the artists selected to be part of PS2's inaugural FAP cohort is 2009 Sculpture graduate Michael Hanna.
The programme is part of the Freelands Foundation, which was founded by Elisabeth Murdoch in 2015. Its mission is to support artists and cultural institutions, to broaden audiences for the visual arts and to enable all young people to engage actively with the creation and enjoyment of art.