Applications will open on Friday 21st February Round 1 Projects Round Two Projects


The Talent Development (TD) Programme was established in 2013 by Southampton based arts organisation ‘a space arts’ and bourn out of their commitment to supporting emerging artistic talent.The programme enables artists to create, propose and justify a period of bespoke professional development. It gives artists (individuals or groups) the chance to design a programme relevant to their needs, aligned with their practice, ambition, career position and long-term goals. Since the programme started 25 artists have been supported as either individuals or groups with bursaries of up to £1000 for early career artists, or up to £1500 for mid career artists, as well as given support throughout their project delivery stages.

The programme stands apart from other professional development initiatives on the basis that it set out to nurture artists through their individual needs and practices. Often professional development is delivered in a group context with an overarching programme that perhaps can generalise the support that artists require. In fact an individually tailored programme was established on the very basis of feedback from local artists in Southampton and is backed up by national research carried out by a-n The Artist Information Company in 2010/2011 which demonstrated the need by artists for personalised development planning, business support, networking events and the critique of their work.

‘a space arts’ recognised the benefit of developing professional development opportunities alongside their mainstream creative projects as a way to extend opportunities for artists at all stages within their career. As many artists will know exhibition and commission opportunities often extend to the few, so it is vitally important to provide different types of programmes to support artists who have different types of practices.

Since Round 1 of the TD programme we have supported artists at very different stages in their career from new graduates to artist who have had an active practice for five to ten years and want to renew the direction of their careers. Projects have ranged from a puppetry residency in Canada to developing an illustration portfolio, an international photography project in Israel to developing a new body of work for a major exhibition opportunity and an experimental curatorial project in Cornwall to an augmented reality trail around Southampton.We have also expanded the programmes reach extending from the South East to the South West inline with Hampshire moving into Arts Council’s South West region, which has meant we’ve ben able to support artists from a wider geographical area.

Round 2 of the TD programme will come to an end at the beginning of November this year. ‘a space arts’ are keen to continue to run and develop the TD Programme, but Round 3 is reliant on receiving further public funding.

To register your interest in Round 3 of the TD programme email

Talent Development has been supported by Arts Council England and Southampton Solent University

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