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Food Residency: Open Call, Metal Southend

Our food residency will offer creatives (individual or collective) the time and space to explore and experiment with their cooking or hospitality practice, sharing new food concepts with the community of Southend in Chalkwell Park. 

Opening date: Thursday 25 May
Closing date: Friday 16 June at 5pm
Notification: All artists will be notified of outcome by Friday 23 June
Residency dates: Up to 2 months between July 2023 and August 2023 (residency days can be taken sporadically throughout this period, if you prefer)
Offer: £400 start up bursary, use of Metal buildings and facilities, and staff time  


Key links:


About Metal:  

Metal works with artists and communities to transform places through creative experimentation and collaboration. We have three sites – in LiverpoolPeterborough and Southend-on-Sea – and we respond to the needs of artists and communities in each place. Food, conversation and hosting are important to our work and to our artists in residence programme. As well as our artist residencies, you might know Metal New Artists Network; the epic Estuary Festival that took place over 107 miles of coastline; Turner Prize winning Assemble’s Granby Workshop; or Harvest, a large-scale art event by Lucy + Jorge Orta that transformed Peterborough’s Cathedral Square. Much of our work is behind-the-scenes and without a predetermined outcome and we are involved in hundreds of conversations and projects every year, supporting artists with funding applications, helping to establish community events, convening environmental sustainability networks, and so much more. 

Metal supports all art disciplines, and we use the term ‘artist’ very broadly. In this text, the term ‘artist’ could be: a food experimenter, patisserie chef, food alchemist, supper club host, creative cook, and can encompass much more.  


What is Metal’s food residency?

Our food residency will offer the space and time to explore and experiment with your cooking/hospitality practice.  

For example, your residency proposal could explore: 

  • Starting up a new food venture and the need for the space to test it out
  • Creating an experimental menu
  • Researching foraging and cooking sustainably
  • Sharing treasured recipes with the public
  • Writing a community cookbook or food zine
  • Holding spaces for culinary conversations
  • Exploring food rituals
  • Food panel talks
  • Invited Potluck dinners
  • Demos & workshops

As part of the residency with us, we will invite you to provide a public café offer and 1 x community dinner. Throughout this residency, you will also have access to the Metal team to support you, through brokering relationships, practical support or research advice.  

Food, hospitality, communal cooking, shared meals and community dinners have always been central to Metal’s processes. Since the organisation was formed, we have celebrated food and encouraged the use of shared meals to support connection and conversation. This is our key focus for this residency: to share ideas, provoke creative conversations and encourage experimentation and curiosity through the medium of food and hospitality.  

Who is the food residency for? 

This opportunity is open to a creative or a group/collective, with an existing idea you would like to test with the community of Southend in Chalkwell Park. You might be a chef, an artist, a baker, or a community group looking to research and explore new concepts.  

We welcome applications from South Essex and from the rest of the UK. 

We are looking for projects where food or hospitality are central to your work, someone with culinary experience with the potential to explore a cross-section of ideas through cooking and sharing food. We are particularly interested in ideas where the kitchen and menu are the space for conversations, and where food can be explored in a broader context including: 

  • Cultural 
  • Environmental 
  • Social 
  • Historical 
  • Political 

Though it isn’t compulsory, we have a particular interest in socially engaged practice. We value different perspectives and experiences, and welcome diversity in all its forms. We particularly encourage applications from global majority, LGBTQIA+, disabled and/or working-class people who are underrepresented at Metal – though each of these groups is represented in Metal’s leadership – and in our sector.   


Where will the residency be? What is the space like? 

This food-based residency can span two months, within the window of July – August 2023. The residency will be based in Chalkwell Hall’s kitchen, with a pop-up café acting as the studio space to experiment, connect and cook up delicious meals and creative ideas.  

Built in 1830, Chalkwell Hall is a grade II listed building set in the beautiful surroundings of Chalkwell Park overlooking the Thames Estuary. The building was renovated by Metal in 2007 and a small domestic kitchen was added to the extension of the building which connects to a suntrap veranda overlooking the lower slopes of the park. When the park first opened to the public in the early 1900s, the Hall had a small café and tuck shop serving the community in the centre of the park. Reinventing the kitchen and café for a short period of time will ignite new creative activity and conversations with Southend’s communities. If required the residency pop-up café can include seating, occupying the ground floor of the building and the veranda area. The rest of the building is used by artists and members of the Metal staff team.  

More information & how to apply here: https://metalculture.com/artists-area/food-residency-open-call/

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