CVAN NW: CRITICAL WRITING
In March 2015 CVAN NW selected 25 emerging and mid-career writers from over 130 applicants to participate in a regional Critical Writing development programme. Writers were awarded a £300 bursary and given the opportunity to attend six practice and theory based workshops in exchange for writing and publishing two articles about contemporary visual arts in the North West.
Between March and May 2015 our cohort of writers travelled to universities, galleries, art centres and artist-led spaces in Preston, Manchester, Liverpool, and Barrow-in-Furness to take part in the workshop programme. While immersing themselves in the region’s visual arts offer, writers had the chance to debate the form and function of critical writing, to learn and take inspiration from our team of experts (Joanne Lee, Chris Sharratt, Bob Dickinson, Gerrie Van Noord, Sophia Crilly and Laura Robertson), and to refine their skills and knowledge in a number of key areas including editing, social media and self-publishing. Writers were also individually paired with a mentor to receive one-to-one support and editorial feedback.
In total, 24 short reviews and 16 features were published across a range of regional and national platforms: The Double Negative, Creative Tourist, Art in Liverpool, Redeye: The Photography Network, Corridor 8, The Skinny, a-n News, this is tomorrow, Axisweb, and Confront magazine.
In April 2016, CVAN NW commissioned The Double Negative to edit and publish a new book to celebrate the Critical Writing programme. On Being Curious: New Critical Writing on Contemporary Art From the North-West of England includes a selection of writing published as part of the programme alongside four new commissions by our team of writers. In addition, a number of new features and reviews have been commissioned for online publication on The Double Negative.
The programme forms part of ‘Art: Audience, Development, Discourse and Skills’ (Art: ADDS), a two year project that has invested in a number of development opportunities for artists, organisations and professionals in the region, developed audiences, and increased connectivity across the North West visual arts sector.
The following exhibition reviews have already been published online
One of the 25 Critical Writing programme places is sponsored by Redeye, The Photography Network and was awarded to Manchester based writer Katrina Houghton. Katrina’s review of Ed Atkins’ ‘Performance Capture’ at Manchester Art Gallery as part of Manchester International Festival was published on Redeye in July. Read more