Arts&Heritage announces commissioned artists for latest Meeting Point programme

Arts&Heritage announces commissioned artists for latest Meeting Point programme

Contemporary arts agency Arts&Heritage (www.artsandheritage.org.uk) have announced the artists that will take part in its Meeting Point programme in 2019/20.

Artists Mel Brimfield (working with composer Gwyneth Herbert), Sophie Dixon, Tod Hanson, Ed Kluz, Lindsey Mendick, Susan Stockwell and Dominic Watson will partner with six museums across the North of England to create a new piece of work in response to the museums and their collections.

Now in its third year, Meeting Point has gained a reputation for its innovative approach to forging relationships between artists and museums and heritage spaces. The programme offers an opportunity for artists to work with unique collections and gives access to the knowledge of museum curators whilst supporting small and medium scale museums to develop their skills and commission new work.

Meeting Point is funded by Arts Council England through Arts&Heritage’s National Portfolio Organisation funding. The programme aims to bring new visitors to the participating museums, to enable audiences to view collections and history in a different way, and to support the future sustainability of museums and heritage sites.

The artists and museums are:

  • Sophie Dixon working with Grace Darling Museum (Bamburgh, Northumberland)
  • Lindsey Mendick and Dominic Watson working with Washington Old Hall (Washington, Tyne and Wear)
  • Ed Kluz working with Colne Valley Museum (Huddersfield, Yorkshire)
  • Mel Brimfield and Gwyneth Herbert working with Kelham Island Museum (Sheffield, Yorkshire)
  • Tod Hanson working with Port Sunlight (Wirral, Merseyside)
  • Susan Stockwell working with Warrington Museum & Art Gallery (Warrington, Cheshire)

Steph Allen, Executive Director at Arts&Heritage, said: “The commissioned artists working with our Meeting Point museums in 2019 and 2020 put forward ideas that were new, exciting and reflected upon the museums and their collections in engaging and innovative ways. 

“The process to shortlist and commission the artists has been rigorous and has included a presentation by the museums to a group of over 65 artists alongside site visits and interviews. It has been a valuable learning experience for the museums, which is a key part of the Meeting Point programme. 

“We’re looking forward to working with the artists to develop their ideas and present six brand new artworks at our Meeting Point museums that will showcase their collections and locations in a new light.”

Tod Hanson (www.todhanson.com), who will be working with Port Sunlight Museum, is an artist based in London and Berwick upon Tweed. Growing up, Tod’s parents were involved in the theatre with costume and scenery. After studying graphic design and public art, Tod went on to do large scale projects for Greenpeace UK and decorating nightclub interiors. Tod now combines these formative influences to explore nature, technology and mapping, interweaving landscape, architecture and historic design style, into large scale immersive installations and public artworks. A world overamplified and speeding up.

Tod Hanson said: “I’m thrilled and excited to have the opportunity to be working with Port Sunlight Village Trust. Fantastical architecture on psychedelic daisy-covered lawns. The village is the frothy topping of a gigantic soap factory and its pop graphic commercialism.”

Susan Stockwell (www.susanstockwell.co.uk), working in Cheshire, is an established artist working across sculpture, installation, collage and film. Her practice is concerned with examining social and colonial histories and engaging with questions of social justice, trade, cultural mapping and feminism. Her art employs the material culture of everyday products, such as recycled computer components, maps and paper currency, which she transforms into compelling artworks. In seeking to reconnect an object’s past, its related history and materiality with contemporary issues, her practice underscores these materials urgent interconnection to collective memories, desires and ecological shortfalls; aspects that evoke, expose and challenge features of social, racial and gender inequality and injustice. Susan has exhibited extensively around the world, including at TATE Modern, the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, The National Museum of China, Beijing, The Katonah Museum of Art, New York and Art League of Houston, USA and Manchester City Art Gallery. Her work is in public and private collections around the world. She teaches part-time at the University of East London and is based in London.

Susan Stockwell said: “I am very excited to be working with Warrington Museum and Art Gallery, it’s a dream come true for me. Its extensive and remarkable collection full of social history, hidden stories, material culture and cabinets of curiosity will be an inspiration for my work. The way that Meeting Point encourages the juxtaposition of contemporary art with historic artefacts and sites is enlightened and visionary. Developing an exhibition about the collection and in collaboration with Warrington’s museums staff and public will be a great privilege.”

Since 2016, Meeting Point has worked with 19 museums and 24 curators to create 19 new artworks and over 100 workshops. Arts&Heritage is currently inviting applications for its most recent Meeting Point programme with a deadline of 31 May. For more information and to download an application form, visit www.artsandheritage.org.uk.