BOOKING NOW: Artist Professional Development Workshops

Booking is now open for a series of six practical artist professional development sessions for artists working within socially engaged practice. Hosted by Heart of Glass in collaboration with Mark Devereux Projects, the sessions will take place in St Helens between November 2018 and April 2019. You can find out more about the programme and Mark Devereux Projects here, or follow the links below for details of each workshop and how to book.

  1. Planning your project
  2. Talking about your work
  3. Finding the right opportunity
  4. Funding and fundraising
  5. Working with contracts
  6. Collaboration in the field

Location
Heart of Glass, Old Beecham’s Building, Water Street, St Helens, WA10 1PP

Times
10am – 4pm

Costs
Season Ticket – all 6 sessions: £135 (£108 concessions: students, senior citizens & St Helens based artists)

Individual sessions: £25 per session (£10 concession for students, senior citizens and St Helens based artists)

Heart of Glass is proud to be based in St Helens and is keen to support the development of artists living and working in the St Helens Borough. All artists with a St Helens postcode are eligible for a concessionary ticket rate.

 

 

Watch the video: St Helens Day Citizens’ Parade

On 30th June 2018 the St Helens Citizens’ Day Parade made its marvellous way across the town centre in celebration of the everyday heroes who make our town such a wonderful place to be!

Featuring local community groups, the Mayor and Mayoress, musical performances and vintage vehicles from the North West Museum Of Road Transport, the parade was led by fantastic performance artists, Eggs Collective, to Church Square, where a mass-karaoke took place.

It was a day full of very special moments and now you can re-live it, thanks to this all singing, all dancing video created by the wonderful Philip MacDonald. Subtitles available.

We hope you enjoy!

 

 

 

Sound City on the Farm – book your free ticket now!

We’re excited to be collaborating with the UK’s leading independent festival for new music Sound City to bring a family fun filled day of music, entertainment, food and arts to the beautiful Inglenook Farm on Sunday 16th September, as part of the 150 year celebrations of St Helens. Book your tickets to Sound City on the Farm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The free event will take place as part of the 150th anniversary celebrations of the formation of the borough of St Helens. A year-long celebration of art, music, theatre, culture, cuisine, sport and community, that is undeniably St Helens.

Sound City of the Farm the latest adventure from the award-winning Sound City continuing its aim and passion for putting a spotlight firmly on the creative, music and artistic talent across the North West, with a focus on St Helens and surrounding areas.

Sound City On the Farm will be a one-day event, taking place in Inglenook Farm, St Helens from 12:00 – 19:30. Live music from the region’s most exciting emerging talent in the form of Sly Digs (Warrington), Scarlet (St Helens), The Racket (Widnes), Rival Bones (St Helens), Katie Mac (Knowsley), Mamatung (Liverpool) & Tracky (Ormskirk).

The Unusual Arts Sourcing Company will deliver an arts programme including life drawing, poetry, interactive audience participation acts, alongside the Artslab who will bring a crafts workshop to the site, creating musical instruments from recycled materials.

Entertainment and attractions for younger children, families with food, beverages and market stalls will keep all visitors happy as part of a mini festival experience to close the summer.

Free tickets for this event will be available from 10am, today (Tuesday 21st August) from Eventbrite. Limited to 450, please act quickly if you are hoping to attend as this event will reach capacity quickly!

“We’re delighted to work with Heart of Glass to celebrate the 150th anniversary of St Helens. At the heart of Sound City is the belief that the world’s best music comes from within 30 miles of where we are located in Liverpool. Discovering and unearthing the most exciting musical gems from around our great city region is what drives us and St Helens has nurtured world class talent and creativity, including Jacqui Abbott of world conquering group, The Beautiful South and Nick McCabe of critically acclaimed The Verve. It’s brilliant to work with Heart of Glass who share the same passion as us and to create a live music and entertainment event which celebrates the greatness of St Helens.”
Becky Ayres-Bewick, Sound City MD

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Sound City and Inglenook Farm on this unique event, and excited to work with such a diverse array of artists to make this day one to remember. We believe that art belongs everywhere, in taxi cabs, empty shops, disused factories, in our streets and on the farm! Art creates possibility, and a way to experience and view the world differently, which is something that Sound City have been doing for years, and so we’re delighted that this collaboration will be our first foray together into making sure that live music and live art play a part in shaping our borough in the future!”
Patrick Fox, Heart of Glass, Director

 

Announcing our autumn/winter season!

We’re thrilled to announce an exciting autumn/winter season of events and activities as part of the St Helens 150 celebrations. The programme, which runs from September – December, will round off a year of amazing events and artistic interventions !

This year’s headline events include: family friendly music event Sound City on the Farm, performances from St Helens son Frank Cottrell-Boyce, a brand new site specific production from multi award-winning theatre company ANU, a Northern premiere of veteran American performance troupe Split Britches’ Unexploded Ordnances, an extraordinary projection mapping experience from Simon McKeown, and a conversation with actress Maxine Peake.

We’re particularly excited to share the programme for this year’s Take Over Festival, in partnership with St.Helens Libraries through their Arts In Libraries programme Cultural Hubs. For eight thrilling weeks art, culture and pop-up performances will be igniting the streets and the spaces of St Helens. No location is off limits as we invite artists to showcase new and engaging work in libraries, shops, labour clubs and marketplaces.

St Helens 150’s edition of the festival examines the idea of identity. In a world where the only constant thing is change, what does that mean to our sense of self?

Tickets on sale from early September!

Watch this space!

Take Over Festival 2018 key highlights:

Son of St Helens and celebrated children’s writer, Frank Cottrell Boyce will deliver a series of readings and talks for children, families and everyone else.
11 and 13 October, Rainhill and Eccleston Libraries, FREE, booking required

Sound City on the Farm will see the festival decamp to the beautiful Inglenook Farm bringing with it a host of breakthrough Northwest bands, delicious food and drink and a host of family friendly activity.
16 September, 12pm – 7.30pm, Inglenook Farm, FREE, tickets on sale from 22nd August

Award-winning US performance troupe Split Britches will present a North of England debut of their show Unexploded Ordnances. Combining a Dr Strangelove-inspired performance with a daring forum for public conversation, Unexploded Ordnances (UXO) explores ageing, anxiety, hidden desires and how to look forward when the future is uncertain.
8 November, 7.30pm and location TBA

The critically lauded  Selina Thompson presents the multi-award winning Salt  – her visceral, vulnerable and beautiful one woman show retracing of the routes of the Transatlantic Slave Triangle – from the UK to Ghana to Jamaica, and back.
20 October, 7pm, Parr Library, £6, £5 (St Helens Library Card Holders, £3 (concessions)

A screening of Funny Cow, followed by a Q&A with the film’s lead actor Maxine Peake who stars as a mercurial female stand up in Adrian Shergold’s unflinching drama about the 70s northern club circuit.
12 November, 7pm, location TBA.

Digital specialist and DaDaFest Artist of the Year, Simon Mckeown is working with the local disabled community to present a fun, exciting and visually poetic spectacle inspired by the town. We Are Still Here will use the complex Victorian facade of St Helens Town Hall as its canvas. Featuring massive super-sized outdoor projectors, next-gen digital mapping software, and immersive soundscapes.
8 December, St Helens Town Hall, time TBA

Deaf artist Aaron Williamson will set up his new durational performance piece Stall of Warm Handshakes on market day. Inspired by the history of the greeting and in the context of Trump’s absurd, elaborate misuse of the handshake, Aaron will work with the public to objectify and explore the various techniques and meanings of handshaking.
Thursday 25th October, St Mary’s Square, time TBA.

And more to be announced!

Other exciting stuff happening this autumn:

Internationally acclaimed theatre company ANU present a brand new work for St Helens. TORCH will blur the edges between the real and imagined, tearing through St Helens town centre in a high octane, blistering unrelenting journey. Part of the Helen project.
Dates and locations in late November TBA

As part of the national Heritage Open Days artists Katie Musgrove and Alex Douglas are working closely with the local D/deaf community to explore how our identity, personality and sense of self is an exchange that relies on visual cues such as symbols, gestures and body language.

7-9 September, Deafness Resource Centre, times TBA

A brand new monthly night, I Heart Thursdays is a chance for audience to to meet artist, creatives to engage with communities. Expect talks, screenings, dinners and just about everything in between. The series kicks off with Heather Peak Morison, Studio Morison hosting a dinner with Dr Caroline Fuchs, The Design Museum, Munich as they discuss her new commission for St Helens, Bliss Park and her current commission in Munich, I’ll Be With You, Whatever. The second event will be a special scratch night of new performance work by some of the best local creative talent, curated and hosted by St Helens’ very own Kitty O’Shea.
Thursday 27 September and 25 October, exact time, location and tickets TBA

ART HERITAGE COMMISSION: Opportunity for a St Helens Borough Artist

To help celebrate 150 years of St Helens, Heart of Glass is seeking applications from artist/s, living or working in the St Helens borough. You should work in a socially responsive and collaborative way and be interested in developing a new commission that explores local heritage with St Helens communities.

We would like the commission to be part of the national Heritage Open Days programme that will take place between 6-9 September 2018. Heritage is an important part of St Helens culture. We are looking for proposals from any art form that explore history through contemporary art practice.

As part of the project, we are working closely with the Deafness Resource Centre (a charity for St Helens and Halton with the aim to provide specialist services for D/deaf people) and its community. We’re keen to capture the unique heritage of St Helens and its people and to mark the 90th year of St Helens & District Society for Deaf People that was founded in 1928.

Download the Artist Brief

How to apply
Please send a:

Deadline for applications
Friday 25 May 2018 (new extended date)

 
[Image courtesy of Deafness Resource Centre, ‘D/deaf members enjoying their Annual Tea Party’, 1930s, from their archives and featured in their publication ‘Deaf History 1928-2008’, 2016]

New project announcement: FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS

HEART OF GLASS, AN AGENCY FOR SOCIAL AND COLLABORATIVE ARTS PRACTICE, ANNOUNCES NEW INTERNATIONAL TRIENNIAL FOR ST HELENS

Today (2 March 2018), Heart of Glass has announced the launch of FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS: The First International Triennial of Social and Collaborative Arts Practice, taking place in Autumn 2021 In St Helens, Merseyside.

FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS will be a convening of work, debate, resources and publications for those who make, watch, research, study, teach, produce, present, write about and archive collaborative and social arts practice. This Triennial will consider how to present dialogical and relational work, create opportunities for the debate of the fierce and urgent questions of the day and move beyond rhetoric to create opportunities for action.

Heart of Glass, founded through the Creative People and Places programme in 2014 and an Arts Council England’s National Portfolio Organisation from 1 April 2018, has established itself as an agency for collaborative and social arts practice. It is the first organisation in England dedicated to the development and support of this practice across all art forms and leads on this with St Helens Council to support the Borough in its wider cultural ambitions to be a centre of excellence in this area.

This April 2018, Heart of Glass hosts its annual WITH FOR ABOUT conference to discuss and reflect on the questions facing collaborative and social art today, and more broadly reflect on the role of art and artists in society, and the nature and potential of collaborative art with and within community and social contexts. The conference will be the first in a series of action research tasks over the coming years with the aim of shaping and developing the Triennial.

For more information about WITH FOR ABOUT 2018, click HERE

Heart of Glass’ programme of events and commissions has brought International artists such as Mark Storor, Studio Morison, ANU Productions, Scottee and idle women to work with communities across the Borough, creating ambitious, radical and exciting art, whilst also nurturing and supporting local talent. With an internationally significant artistic programme, and a soon be launched criticality programme, Heart of Glass is acknowledged as a leader in this field – a potent catalyst for positive collaboration, a pro-active innovator and a pioneer in brokering the reciprocal relationship between contemporary arts and modern society, a champion for interdisciplinary, cross art-form and cross-sector collaborative practice, and a powerful and provocative conduit for new ideas.

Over the past four years, Heart of Glass, its partners and the people of St Helens have collectively accomplished a transformative step-change in the depth and quality of art and opportunities for artistic and cultural involvement across the borough of St Helens. This has led to a dramatic re-engagement of arts and culture in the civic life of St Helens, in its self-definition and its identity, as well as in its public realm and physical fabric, such that the civic leadership has publicly acknowledged – and is currently working with Heart of Glass to realise – the re-positioning of arts and culture as front and centre to its vision for the borough, to its regeneration and investment strategy, and to its plans for future growth.

For FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS Heart of Glass are partnering with Create, the national development agency for collaborative arts in Ireland. Both organisations recognise that while collaborative ways of working are not new, it is the depth of relationship and connection which frames the new practice. The recent proliferation in this type of work has been influenced by the impact of globalisation, digitalisation, the economic crisis, austerity, increased pressure on local budgets and services, and the groundswell of grassroots movements and local activism.

FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS sets out to present and critically examine how arts and cultural practice operating across multiple fields of knowledge and experience can influence and help shape our collective futures.

Darren Henley, Chief Executive, Arts Council England: “Heart of Glass has done amazing work in attracting artists, communities and audiences to St Helens as one of our Creative People and Places projects and I’m delighted that it is joining our national portfolio in April. And it is great to see the Triennial being launched in St Helens – I’m sure it will attract artists and collaborations which will continue the excellent artistic and cultural offer in the region.”

Patrick Fox, Heart of Glass Director: “We’re delighted to be announcing this initiative, and as with all our projects, this will be artist, producer and community led, and will resonate across art form. Partners such as Create Ireland, Axisweb, idle women, Liverpool Biennial, Super Slow Way, Arnolfini, Open Eye Gallery and In Situ and colleagues across the Creative People and Places Network nationally and the Collaborative Arts Partnership Programme internationally (an EU funded initiative of which Heart of Glass is a member) will be critical to shaping this project. This is a collaborative undertaking, the door is open and we are keen to hear from other interested parties. As well as the partners listed, we will be widening this network and building momentum over the coming months and years to ensure we are diverse, representative and well placed to have fierce and urgent conversations. We believe some of the most exciting work in contemporary art exists within this field of practice, creating people and place driven work that is uniquely positioned to respond to the politics of our times.  We look forward to the collaborative process in crafting an essential and vital platform within the International collaborative and social arts practice landscape, and cementing St Helens as a destination at the forefront of critical practice and thinking.”

Ailbhe Murphy, Director of Create: “As Ireland’s development agency for collaborative arts, we are delighted to partner with Heart of Glass to realise this exciting and timely initiative. FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS will generate necessary debate about the contemporary field of collaborative arts practice and will begin by asking, “what could a Triennial for collaborative and socially engaged arts practice look like?” As artists and arts and civil society organisations working in this field, how can we create the conditions to engage with multiple forms of cross-sectoral, interdisciplinary and embodied local and regional knowledge? How can we best consider, animate and legitimise those knowledge’s through meaningful exchange and practice? We look forward to working with Heart of Glass and additional partners including the Collaborative Arts Partnership Programme network on FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS, which will act as a barometer for the compelling questions that animate our contemporary socio-political and cultural antagonisms.”

Heather Peak from Studio Morison (Artist): “I am delighted to be part of the Heart of Glass team and their future-plans. Something extraordinary is happening in St Helens, art and creativity is central, urgent and important to the health and well-being of this place and its people. It is becoming not only about what we make, but how we behave and ultimately how we can survive, process our increasingly difficult lives and ultimately prosper. Art is the most powerful action we can make, it speaks directly to us of our lives, our anxieties, our joy and our potential power. Artist’s know that the best way to solve a problem is just to begin, and here in St Helens we have begun a journey that will touch our personal, civic, work and home life, and ultimately allow us be in control of our futures.”

Councillor Gill Neal, St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health & Wellbeing: “Artistic and social collaboration on this scale is certainly something we have been interested in supporting especially with Heart of Glass’ continuing ambition to create exciting and unique art with, of and for our local communities in St Helens. This announcement cements St Helens’ position as a national centre for collaborative and social arts practice.”

Claire McColgan, Director of Culture Liverpool: “We are delighted to support Heart of Glass and St Helens in this exciting new development. Our work together across the City-Region over the coming years will further re-inforce the vital role that art and culture can play across our communities, and the work by Heart of Glass in St Helens over the past number of years has shown real leadership and vision, offering something unique to the region. This is a welcome and ambitious development and we look forward to working together to make it a huge success for the region.”

Rachel Anderson and Cis O’Boyle, Caretakers, idle women: “For years now socially engaged practitioners have spoken of the need to consolidate our knowledge and expertise, to articulate our practice from the ground where we work and to challenge the mis-understanding and mis-representation that leads to instrumentalisation by the Institution. Heart of Glass has been established to listen and activate these discussions here in the UK. What better place to create a new centre of practice than the North West and what better town than St Helens. FIERCE & URGENT CONVERSATIONS is the critical emergence of body of practitioners who create with passion, skill and rigour, we have been talking for many years, now is the time for our action. These are exciting times.”

Claire Doherty, Director, Arnolfini and former Director, Situations: “This new initiative represents a significant moment for contemporary culture in the UK which demonstrates that it’s time for a new generation of socially progressive and civically-dedicated arts organisations and initiatives to take the lead. Grown out of a complex and rich history of social practice, community arts, gallery education and place-based producing, such initiatives are offering an alternative to the cathedrals of culture. To say that we are working with Heart of Glass and Situations on the development of “Fierce and Urgent Questions” feels like exactly what an arts organisation should be committing its time to. That St. Helens presents such an exemplary mode of posing those questions – through locally impactful and internationally resonant new work is all the more thrilling. We can’t wait to get started.”

Sarah Fisher, Director of Open Eye Gallery: “Partnering Heart Of Glass in this significant and timely programme is a natural fit for Open Eye Gallery. Photography has become the most pervasive medium through which individuals and communities share their lives on a daily basis through social media. Open Eye Gallery is developing a national network on Socially Engaged Photography practice, building upon it’s recent 2 year Culture Shifts programme – which Heart of Glass partnered – which saw 10 photographers working with communities to co-author new cultural programmes across the city region. We will shortly announce a new MA Socially Engaged Photography Practice with University of Salford starting September 2018 and look forward to exploring our shared agenda through the ambitions of the Triennial programme.”

Dr. Alastair Roy and Professor Lynn Froggett, Psychosocial Research Unit, University of Central Lancashire: “Globally, collaborative social arts is a practice whose time has come – but one with an emergent knowledge base. In St Helens, the 10 year vision set out by Heart of Glass makes it ideally placed to lead research in this area and as a key academic partner, the University of Central Lancashire is working with them to build an open research platform that aims to build on the experience of the programme itself and an international network of practitioners and researchers. It addresses the pressing questions raised by art that engages with an expansive canvas of questions that have both local and international significance: on cultural citizenship, social justice, civic space and sustainability as well as the finer grained issues of well-being, relationship and intimacy. Heart of Glass is a thinking organisation ‘without walls’, strongly located in place. This paradox shapes its curiosity and its promise.”

Chrissie Tiller – Thinker, writer and teacher on social arts practice and Heart of Glass Associate: “In the four years I have worked with Heart of Glass I have been immeasurably impressed by their commitment to a more collaborative and social arts practice and its potential to ‘shift our sense of what is possible, unleash imaginations and model and experiment with new ways of being in the world.’  They have done this, not only by commissioning leading artists in the field to make exciting, challenging and brave work with the people of St Helens but also by creating important spaces for critical reflection.  Spaces that embrace difficult conversations, share new and different knowledges and welcome dissent in the struggle for greater social justice and cultural democracy.  I am delighted to be working with them on FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS and can think of no better arts organisation than Heart of Glass or town than St Helens to be leading this exciting and timely initiative.”

Heart of Glass is an agency for collaborative and social arts practice based in St Helens, Merseyside. Made possible by an initial investment of £1.5 million from Arts Council England through the Creative People and Places programme, it is supported by a consortium of partners and collaborators.

Heart of Glass is made with, of and for St Helens. Its programme is rooted in collaborative practice and embodies the principle of partnership. Its core values, philosophy and approach as a project are founded on co- production with the community and the active participation of the collaborator, non-artist, audience and viewer in the creation of great art. People, both individually and within communities of place or interest, are central to both their thinking and practice.

FIERCE AND URGENT CONVERSATIONS: The First International Triennial of Social and Collaborative Arts Practice will take place in St Helens in Autumn 2021. While collaborative ways of working are not new, it is the depth of relationship and connection which frames a new practice.   In collaborative arts, non-arts participants can become both co-creator and new audience in an exciting area of practice that cuts across art-form and cuts across context, a practice with infinite potential. The recent proliferation in this type of work has been influenced by the impact of globalisation, digitalisation, the economic crisis, austerity, increased pressure on local budgets and services, and the groundswell of grassroots movements and local activism. Increasingly, artists are routinely working in a variety of settings, including health, education, regeneration, prison, science and tech contexts, with people of all age ranges, gender, ethnicity and sexual orientation, and presented in increasingly innovative public realm and ‘non-arts’ civic spaces, such as hospitals, prisons, schools and older people’s homes.

For further press information please contact Catharine Braithwaite on +44 (0)7947 644 110 or cat@we-r-lethal.com

 

Political Artists back to start the party


Artists, entertainers and all round good eggs are returning to St Helens!

Following on from workshops and performances in the borough in 2015, Eggs Collective are back in town as our Party Political Artists in Residence.

Their mission is to help celebrate St Helens 150th birthday in style and they will be working with Heart of Glass on some of the key events in 2018.

Eggs Collective are a trio making sharp, fun, culturally-observational performance that falls somewhere in the cracks between theatre and cabaret. St Heleners may well have crossed their paths in The Hunt & Darton Café, at workshops or at The Citadel Theatre where they led the sold out ‘Right St Helens Knees Up’ show.

They have been working across Britain, including showcasing an adapted stage show ‘Get A Round’ live on BBC2.

Sara Cocker and Léonie Higgins will be performing live at a series of events to mark #StHelens150, they kick off with ad-hoc performances to guests at Thursday’s (January 25th) launch.

They explained: “We love St Helens. It’s a place with a whip-smart sense of humour and glint in its eye – and we’ve always felt welcomed in. That’s why we’re so delighted to have been invited to be Party Political Artists in Residence and plan some celebratory events this year as St Helens marks its 150th year.”
“We take the business of partying very seriously. So, shine up your dancing shoes, St Helens, and, in the immortal words of Kool and the Gang, let’s celebrate!”

Keep updated on twitter by following @eggscollective and @theheartofglass

Artist in residence opportunity

We are recruiting check out the latest amazing opportunity for an artist in residence:

ARTIST IN RESIDENCE: SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES

FULL-TIME (35 hours per week)

ONE YEAR FIXED TERM CONTRACT

£27,000 – £30,000 Dependant upon qualification and experience.

This role will be a residency truly embedded within Heart of Glass. You will be part of the Programme Team, leading on the Schools and Colleges Programme, creating a series of projects to deliver with key partners.

Aimed at an artist who has significant experience working with schools and colleges, this is an opportunity to develop your own practice and creatively lead on projects from seed to fruition. As well as creating your own projects with key schools, you will create a series of online resources that will complement the Heart of Glass programme. All this while working with your own budget, allowing you to shape projects and collaborate with other artists.

In this role you will also support schools to progress their Artsmark status and support pupils involved with projects to achieve Arts Award and will represent Heart of Glass within local education networks, offering a creative voice and finding opportunities to develop project ideas and new partnerships.

This is a fantastic opportunity for an artist to develop their practice in this area, at an appropriate pace with continued support from Heart of Glass over a substantial period. We are also open to this opportunity being fulfilled by a small collective or a job share.

Closing date for receipt of applications is 9am on Monday 19th February 2018, and interviews will be held in St Helens on Monday 26th February 2018.

POSITIVE ACTION STATEMENT:

It is important to us that Heart of Glass staff are representative of our community and we take diversity very seriously. Whoever you are, whatever your background, we encourage you to apply. We guarantee that if you have a disability and meet the minimum essential criteria for this role you will be guaranteed an interview.

Click here for the information pack

Professional Development Opportunity for Women in the Arts

We are recruiting a group of 7 women artists or producers in performing or visual arts who will support each other’s professional development for a period of 18 months. Are you a woman at a critical point in your working life? Is collaboration and co-production central to your practice? We want to hear from you.

Over the next two years Heart of Glass, idle women and Anu Productions are working together on a programme entitled ‘Helen’. Helen will create immersive and explosive art experiences focused on women. You can find more information about the programme here: http://www.heartofglass.org.uk/project/helen/.

‘Helen’ is influenced by the work of historian feminist Silvia Federici whose extensive research into the mechanisms of the historical European witch-hunts provides analysis on today’s systematic violence against women. Prior to the end of 17th century, the word ‘gossip’ meant ‘women-friends’, and did not carry the derogatory meaning it has today. At this time women shared much of their lives and work with other women. Women co-operated with each other.

‘Helen’s Gossips’, our talent development programme, will seek to recapture this way of working. We want women from different stages of their careers to come together and collaborate as the basis for progression. There will be no hierarchies, and expertise will be shared by an array of voices, with the aim of creating new, collective solutions which can move us all forward. We are committed to improving diversity in the sector and bringing together different women’s experiences.

 

As a result, we want to ensure that this opportunity works for women of colour and/or those who are D/deaf or disabled. 4 out of 7 of places will be allocated to women who are not currently represented properly in the arts sector.

We want to recruit 7 women to join our council, ‘The Gossips’. Women will commit to approximately 6 development days between March 2018 and June 2019, these development days will be in St Helens. We will agree dates collectively. At the beginning of the programme, we will design the content of our approach collaboratively. The sessions will be supported by Mojisola Adebayo and Sarah Bailey, both women with extensive experience of learning in the arts. We will make bursaries available to those who cannot undertake this as part of of their existing employment. This will be between £600 and £1000 and will be agreed following selection.

To express your interest, please send us a copy of your CV and a brief proposal (1-side of A4) telling us about your career to date, how you approach collaboration within your work, and why this opportunity would be helpful to you now. Any women who are unsuccessful will be informed at a later date about opportunities for involvement in other parts of the programme.

Applications and any questions should be sent to Sarah Bailey on sarah@heartofglass.org.uk.

The deadline for applications is Monday 5th February 2018. We are grateful for support from Arts Council England, St Helens Council and Liverpool City Council.