Added to Creative Stoke, 23rd October 2011

23.10.11   
Stoke-on-Trent’s Stoke Your Fires film festival has its 2012 dates: 10th-24th February 2012. Submissions are now being accepted. Added to the 2012 Awards roster are a new Music Video category and a new Under-16s category. Deadline: 16th December 2011. Full details at the website.

23.10.11   
Stoke-on-Trent’s Stoke Your Fires film festival has launched a new Open Film Commission, for professionals in Stoke-on-Trent / North Staffordshire…

“The successful film can be delivered in any format and embrace any genre — however must be filmed entirely on location within the city of Stoke-on-Trent, and as a minimum [will] have a full theatrical trailer ready for public viewing as part of the Festival programme in February 2012.”

Deadline: 7th November 2011.

23.10.11   
Staffordshire University Creative Writing Society will host up-and-coming Director Andrew Mark Simpson on 2nd November 2011. Andrew will be screening his new film, and doing a Q&A in the Film Theatre on the Stoke campus. Tickets are £2.50.

23.10.11   
Artwaves CIC in Burslem is holding an Artists Surgery every Wednesday for the next four weeks….

“Drop in to Artwaves between 12 noon and 4pm. Tell is about any problems you face as a creative, and share your successes! View the building, meet the team, get a second opinion.”

Finding the Artwaves gallery and artists’ studios: Artwaves is in Nile Street, Burslem — it’s not in
the town centre and can be found at the opposite end of Nile Street from the disused Royal Doulton factory and the town.

23.10.11   
Creative England‘s new Film Culture funding scheme is now open for applications from festivals and art-house cinemas.

23.10.11   
Down in West Bromwich, The Public are now inviting… “submissions from interactive artists” for Touch Interactive 2012. Works must be suitable for… “large scale projection or monitor display”. Application deadline: 2nd December 2011. Full details can be found here. They also have an associated exhibition opportunity for film and video artists, called Screening 2012.

23.10.11   
Friends of the Potteries Museums & Art Gallery are hosting an evening talk on 23 November 2011 (from 7.15pm), featuring Matthew Rice. He is the author of the well-reviewed recent book The Lost City of Stoke-on-Trent and will be signing copies after the talk.

23.10.11   
Keen to help create a contemporary circus scene in the West Midlands? “Activating Contemporary Circus in the West Midlands” is a meeting for interested parties at the Birmingham Hippodrome (‘Stageside’, Thorp Street, city centre)…

“join leading practitioners to explore creatively how we can develop a future for contemporary circus in the region.”

Interested? Confirm attendance by 28th October 2011, via  sarahallen@birminghamhippodrome.com

23.10.11   
The Community Development Foundation has announced that over £150,000 of funding has been made available across four Council wards in Stoke-on-Trent. Burslem North, Burslem South & Fenton will each have £33,910, and Hanley West and Shelton will have £50,865. The funding is to be given to bona fide community projects, offering grants of between £250 and £2,500. It will be awarded by “local community panels”. Presumably there will be more details soon in the press about panel selection and application details.

23.10.11   
Staffordshire County Council has a graduate placement on offer. You’ll be a recent (i.e.: within the last 2 years) Crafts or Design graduate in the West Midlands. The successful applicant will work with an artist-in-residence at Eagle House, a purpose-built housing scheme, in the town of Stafford. A £500 bursary is on offer. Application deadline: 11th November 2011. Full details are online here or can be had from Anne Forgan at:  anne_forgan@yahoo.co.uk

17.10.11   
Congratulations to Staffordshire University for successfully launching a new Masters degree in Film by Negotiated Learning. 18 students are signed up for this current year.

23.10.11   
Staffordshire Daily Photo is a new daily photoblog from Mark Righter in Blythe Bridge.

23.10.11   
Akademi, Sampad, and Kala Sangam are offering bursaries to South Asian dancers to attend the National Symposium for South Asian Dance conference on 28th October 2011 in Leicester, in the East Midlands. Application details: Akademi, mira@akademi.co.uk | Sampad, piali@sampad.org.uk | Kala Sangam, geetha@kalasangam.org

23.10.11   
Artists’ Newsletter magazine (aka AN) has published results (PDF link) from a large online survey of artists.

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Added to Creative Stoke, 17th October 2011

17.10.11   
The ArtWaves Gallery in Burslem currently has affordable artists’ work-spaces for hire. Resident artists are also promoted on the ArtWaves online gallery.

17.10.11   
Congratulations to Stoke firm Mushroom Digital on launching their very interesting new social networking site called FutureYear.com. This new site lets users post their future long-term plans online — such as birthdays, weddings, business and product launches, conferences, and much more. Then you can share and co-ordinate your year with friends and family. At the moment it’s “early days”, and it’s not immediately obvious how you add items to your timeline — but you add events by going to your “Profile” page and then clicking on the “+Plan” button.

17.10.11   
Congratulations to Crewe’s art-house cinema Big Cheese Film Club for attracting business sponsorship from Mornflake, who also sponsor the Crewe Alexandra football team.

17.10.11   
Added to the Directory: Illustrator and designer Lee Holland has recently graduated and returned to Stoke. He is keen to collaborate with other illustrators on projects.

Above: Lee’s proposed book design for a Penguin paperback, and his timeline of fossil fuels.

17.10.11   
Staffordshire Performing Arts is launching a new youth choir. Aspiring vocal harmonists aged 11 to 18 are invited to an audition on 19th October 2011. Full details at the website.

17.10.11   
Added to the Directory: Staffordshire University Creative Writing Society. They have an Open Mic Night coming up on 25th October 2011, which is linked to the B.A. Creative Writing degree course.

17.10.11   
The BBC’s new Ceramics: A Fragile History has broadcast its first episode, “The Story of Clay”. This BBC documentary is currently on the iPlayer, and Stoke-on-Trent is said to feature heavily. Part Two, “The Age of Wedgwood“, is scheduled for broadcast tonight.

17.10.11   
Job:  Bilston Craft Gallery, down in the Black Country near Wolverhampton, has a £2,000 commission available. You’ll work with the Exhibitions Officer and a specialist early years education team, to develop an interactive sensory area suitable for 0-5 year olds. Contact Carrie Jones for a full commission brief and application forms, at:  carrie.jones@wolverhampton.gov.uk

17.10.11   
Job:  Nearby Wolverhampton, which has just launched its new City Strategy on the back of its Enterprise Zone win, is seeking submissions from artists for their Project Dandelion public art project. This is for a commission they are calling the “Interactive Welcome“. Fee: £18,000 (including all materials, expenses and installation).

17.10.11   
Los Angeles-based artist Ed Rucha is giving a free talk at Wolverhampton Art Gallery on 21st October 2011.

17.10.11   
Wolverhampton Art Gallery is calling for crafts makers to participate in The Joy of Making exhibition (11th Feb to 14th Apr 2012). Full details and application forms at the Web page.

17.10.11   
Despite the £1.3m EU-funded Build Up North Staffordshire scheme, it seems Stoke City Council is still having problems in finding local suppliers. The North Staffordshire Chamber of Commerce is currently running an online survey on the Council’s behalf to… “share your experiences of the local procurement process and let us know how you think the current system can be improved”.

17.10.11   
The North Staffordshire Chamber of Commerce is running a Social Media for Profit in Business training day at their HQ on Festival Park. The date is 26th October 2011, and prices start at £222 inc. VAT.

17.10.11   
The Staffordshire Marketing Academy is running a second half-day Action for Business. This will be a ‘business growth through marketing’ event, and will be at the Moat House Hotel on Festival Park, Stoke-on-Trent. Cost is £35. Full details at the website.


Added to Creative Stoke, 14th October 2011

14.10.11   
Your editor has a taster gallery of 12 pictures made at the huge ‘Fresh’ ceramics exhibition — which is now on at the old Spode factory in Stoke town, as part of the Ceramics Biennial 2011. The work of 41 ceramics graduates is on show, alongside displays of bricks and ceramics made by leading commercial firmsin the UK. There is a cafe, and much of the ground floor of the factory is open to photographers. The entrance is near the King’s Hall.

14.10.11   
Don’t forget that paper tax returns for the self-employed are due in by 31st October 2011. Also of note is that the taxman has an amnesty on now for art, music and dance teachers who may have been taking “cash-in-hand” for lessons and not declaring it on their tax returns.

14.10.11   
Mark Riley writes to say that “The Dance Floor” in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent, is a new 3,000 sq.ft venue for hire in the town…

“Ideal for rehearsal space for drama or dance groups. Potential for a photographic studio.”

Interested? Call Mark on:  0775 115 2634  or email:  thedanceflooruk@hotmail.co.uk

14.10.11   
Advance notice of a major funding stream, called Catalyst. Some types of applications are already invited. Catalyst will help arts and heritage organisations to source private-sector money and sponsorship, and is described as a…

“private giving investment programme aimed at helping cultural organisations diversify their income streams and access more funding from private sources.”

Application opening dates are…

* Heritage applications opened: 29th September 2011.
* Arts applications open: 1st November 2011.
* Capacity building and match funding scheme open: 1st November 2011.
* Heritage fundraising capacity building grants open: 1st April 2012.

Full details at the website, including eligibility details.

14.10.11   
Blitz Games, one of the biggest videogames makers in the Midlands, now has its registration open for its Student Open Days.

14.10.11   
The Arts Council has released its 2010-11 spending figures for Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. Spending in Staffordshire has been nearly cut in half — from £402,968 in 2009/10, to £214,935 in 2010/11. Spending in Stoke-on-Trent has increased from £213,150 in 2009/10 to £332,608 in 2010/11, but £100k of that increase is accounted for by the fact that the Ceramics Biennial falls in 2011.


Added to Creative Stoke, 9th October 2011

09.10.11   
Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council is looking for an artist or artists to exhibit at a new Health & Wellbeing Centre in the heart of Newcastle, due to open in January 2012. The work should be… “based on the theme of health and wellbeing, and have a fresh and contemporary quality”. All media will be considered and large and small-scale work is welcome. The artwork will be on display for a three-month period. Deadline for applications: 18th November 2011. Full details from Bev Jennings at The Borough Museum and Art Gallery, at: beverley.jennings@newcastle-staffs.gov.uk

Also available from Bev, via the above email address, are details of opportunities for 3D designer makers to sell at the Newcastle-under-Lyme Christmas craft fair. Application deadline: 7th November 2011.

09.10.11   
There’s set to be an Enterprise Day at the Co-operative Emporium (former Co-Op Dept. store) in the town of Leek. The date is 14th October 2011 (12 noon to 7pm). Find out about the New Enterprise Allowance Scheme, Business Initiative, Staffordshire Business Innovation Centre, Women in Rural Enterprise, education opportunities, and meet members of the Staffs Moorlands Economic Regeneration team.

09.10.11   
Walsall’s Creative Development Team requires the creative design, development and delivery of a multi-media project to raise awareness and inform school children (Key Stage 3 and 4) about sustainable travel. Application deadline: 31st October 2011. Full details from Rachel Parker at: parkerr@walsall.gov.uk

09.10.11   
The Big Lottery’s Silver Dream Fund, in association with The Daily Mail, is challenging creative people to devise new ways… “to help vulnerable older people deal more effectively with life-changing events”. Deadline for the initial submission of ideas is: 28th October 2011. Full details at the website.

09.10.11   
Wolverhampton’s FLIP International Animation Festival is coming up soon (27th – 29th October 2011). They still don’t have a full programme out yet, but early-birds who want workshop tickets should probably start watching the website from now on.

09.10.11   
The European Union funding scheme UK MEDIA is now welcoming application for funding Single Projects, Groups of Projects and Development of Interactive Projects.

09.10.11   
There’s a film and transmedia content-production workshop in Birmingham on 22nd October 2011. Tickets cost £30.

09.10.11   
Youth Music is launching a new online portal to support new funding opportunities for music education activities. Priority areas are: children in challenging circumstances, encouraging talent and potential, and early years children. The new funding programme will open on 3rd November 2011. See the website on the launch day, or there is a launch event in Birmingham (Fazeley Studios) on 3rd November 2011.

09.10.11   
Rob Pointon’s new Vis Unita Fortior exhibition has been covered in video by 6 Towns Radio. The show is on now at Barewall, in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent. Warning: no SteadyCam – have your sea-sickness pills handy…

09.10.11   
There’s to be a one-day free conference called ‘Stoke Stories’ happening on Saturday 15th October 2011 at Staffordshire University’s Stoke campus. The day aims to bring together representatives of Stoke-on-Trent’s volunteering and charity groups with people from Councils and local business and with… “friends from outside the city”. The venue is the Ashley Building on the campus, just around the corner from the main train station. Secure free bicycle-locking is available at the Film Theatre. Tickets from: stokestories.eventbrite.com

09.10.11   
The Photographers’ Collective North Staffs is set to host their Open Photography Competition at The Burslem School of Art in Burslem. The show will open to the public on 3rd November 2011. Want to enter? Get your images printed at a size no larger than 6″ x 4″ inches, and bring them to The Burslem School of Art on either 27th October (10am-5pm) or 28th October (10am-5pm) 2011. Photographers must live and/or work in North Staffordshire, and you can submit up to 3 images per person. More details via the Facebook group.


Added to Creative Stoke, 4th October 2011

04.10.11   
The Stoke-on-Trent Ceramics Biennial is now underway in Stoke-on-Trent. See the website for the full programme of exhibitions, demonstrations and open days.

Adult creative workshops are:—

* Re-Mould (Saturday 29th October, £15): “Join us for an afternoon of making. Inspired by the mould store at the original Spode factory site”

* Re-Design (23rd October, £15): “Join us for an afternoon of design, learn how to make your own ceramic transfer.”

There will also be two talks and a symposium:—

* 13th October 2011. “Artists and Industry : a constructive relationship?”, at The Potters Club, very near the university and Stoke train station. £25. This will offer “presentations by artists and industry figures showcasing their experiences, followed by lively panel discussions and opportunities for questions from the floor.”.

* 21st October 2011. “Ceramics Practice as Research”, at Staffordshire University. £25. This one-day “symposium will provide an opportunity to examine the nature of ceramics practice as research”.

* 3rd November 2011. “Education Platform” at the old Spode factory in Stoke old town, a short walk from the main train station. £25. This afternoon talk “focuses on the promotion and use of ceramics and craft processes within formal and informal education”.

The Ceramic Review magazine is also offering a writing prize. Entrants should write a 650-word text that explores the Stoke-on-Trent Ceramics Biennial or the ceramic heritage of the city. Submit to: writingprize@ceramicreview.com   Deadline for submission: 13th November 2011.

There is also a one-day Ceramics 2011 expo for the industry, on 10th November 2011. The venue will be the Britannia Stadium, Stoke-on-Trent.

04.10.11   
The Three Counties Open Art Exhibition 2011 will be opening at Keele University Art Gallery on 8th November 2011, and will run through until 13th December 2011. Receiving days for the exhibition are Friday 21st October (between 10am and 4pm) and Saturday 22nd October (between 10am and 1pm). 2011 sees the added attraction of a major new prize. The Arthur Berry Prize is worth £1,000, and the prize-winner will be selected from all entrants to the exhibition who are aged over 16 years. Entry forms from: whatson@kfm.keele.ac.uk

04.10.11   
Families Magazine Staffordshire is a new magazine for those with young children. This might be a useful vehicle for those seeking targetted advertising opportunities in this area.

04.10.11   
Stoke-on-Trent City Council are currently offering a Travel Plan Grant Scheme to local businesses. You can bid for up to £5,000 to help give employees greener methods of travelling to work (such as secure bicycle-locking facilities, etc). Full details and an application form from: transportation@stoke.gov.uk

04.10.11   
The North Staffordshire Chamber of Commerce has a new online survey to try and find out more about the local companies already involved in the export market.

04.10.11   
Stoke-on-Trent Libraries will host a workshop titled “Newly Self-Employed: The Basics”, between 10am and 12.30pm on Friday 28th October 2011. This will focus mainly on practical tax and registration matters. The venue is the City Central Library, and booking is essential. To book a free place telephone 01782 238455.

04.10.11   
From this week, the distribution of Lottery funds to support film production has transfered to the new Creative England body. Their new national Film Culture funding scheme opens for applications from festivals and art-house cinemas from 17th October 2011, and will…

“aim to ensure audiences have access to a wide and diverse range of film content, to deepen and enrich audiences’ experience through education opportunities, and to integrate the unique resources of regional screen heritage into wider film provision.”

From November 2011 there will also be a national Talent Development Fund, offering…

“support for organisations and networks working with talent on a local/regional level”

04.10.11   
Staffordshire University is offering new innovation vouchers that are… “worth £3,000”. These vouchers will enable qualifying businesses to purchase innovation consultancy support from Staffordshire University. To be eligible you must be a small to medium sized firm (i.e.: already employing 10 to 250 employees), be planning substantial growth over the next 12 months, and be located within the ST1 to ST21 postcode areas. The following areas of research expertise are available from the university, among others: design-led innovation; digital media; and intellectual property advice. Vouchers will be allocated on a “first come, first served” basis to qualifying firms. For further information please contact Libby Griffin at:  libby.griffin@staffs.ac.uk

04.10.11   
Ashbourne Arts, up in nearby Derbyshire, is seeking street performers for their Ashbourne Festival. The aim of the commission is to create an original performance that is unique to Ashbourne and reflects the character, history and environment of the town making use of its character and public spaces. The new work will be performed on both the 23rd and 24th of June 2012. There is an inclusive fee of £6,000. Application deadline: 28th October 2011. For a full brief please contact Tim Challans at:  challansconsult@btinternet.com

04.10.11   
Exhibition space is available at the Brewhouse Arts Centre in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire. Arts East Staffs is looking for exhibiting artists to show their work in our extensive exhibition spaces. They are open to regional as well as local artists, and have exhibition slots in 2012. In 2012 they have four hireable exhibition spaces on offer for a period of five weeks. Prices start from £80, and cost is dependent on space — but included is hanging of your work, inclusion in Arts East Staffs publicity material and the opportunity to sell. For more information and an application pack please contact Paul Challacombe at:  paul.challacombe@eaststaffsbc.gov.uk