Emerge Press Release


Upland Offers £1,000 Bursaries to Support Fresh Art and Craft Talent

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Young artists with a link to Dumfries and Galloway have just a few days left to apply for a £1,000 bursary and mentorship scheme.

The project, called Emerge, is being run by Upland, the new organisation set up to support and encourage artists and makers based in, and linked to, the region.

Successful applicants will also be able to take part in Spring Fling 2016, which is Scotland’s premier contemporary visual art and craft open studios event, and takes place from May 28 to 30.

Amy Marletta, Upland Professional and Talent Development Manager, said: “This is a superb opportunity for emerging visual artists or makers under the age of 25, perhaps recent graduates, to get funding and tuition from experienced professional artists.

“It’s a really unusual chance for people to get help in moving on to the next stage in their careers.

“Setting out on your own can be tough, and having someone there to show you the ropes makes a huge difference.

“Similar schemes in the past had great results. These bursaries give emerging artists lots of new skills and confidence to help them for the future – and the chance to be part of a prestigious national event.

“We are dedicated to encouraging fresh talent from, and with links to, our region. Emerge is one way we are doing this, by helping young people develop fulfilling and creative careers.”

Applications have to be in by 5pm on Monday, October 26.

There are three places and they are open to emerging artists or craft makers, under 25, who either live in Dumfries and Galloway or have strong links – for example people who were raised here but now live elsewhere.

The complete package consists of £1,000 towards developing new work or developing your practice, 15 days of mentoring with a specially selected mentor from the region and lasts from January to December.  They can also go on fact-finding trips and attend appropriate masterclasses.

Emerge winners can also be part of Spring Fling, if it’s appropriate for the work they do, providing a showcase in front of thousands of visitors from all over Scotland and beyond.

For further information go to the Upland website ( and if you need information and advice on completing the application call Amy Marletta at [email protected] or on 0787 1201473.

Emerge is a development of the previous Young Artists’ Bursary scheme run by Spring Fling which achieved excellent results. Bursary winners included Langholm’s Rory Laycock in 2014.

Upland CIC (Community Interest Company) has been set up to deliver festivals, events, training, networking, support and opportunities as part of a year-round programme which will benefit the region, its artists, communities and economy.

It replaces Spring Fling CIC, which was set up in 2009, as the body that runs Spring Fling and the wider programme of activities.

The new CIC, which has kept the existing Spring Fling office at Gracefield Arts Centre in Dumfries, will work closely with other arts bodies in the region to further-strengthen the sector.