New bursary scheme open to Laois artists offers financial and career development opportunities

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New bursary scheme open to Laois artists offers financial and career development opportunities

The Association of Local Authority Arts Offices (LAAOs) in collaboration with the Arts Council have introduced a new scheme aimed at supporting mid-career artists across the country.

The scheme, Platform 31, is designed to support and offer career development for 31 mid-career artists (one artist in each of the 31 local authorities around Ireland), there are two elements of support for participating artists in the scheme: financial and developmental. 

Participating artists will receive an €8,000 bursary to invest in themselves and their practice, combined with participation in an advisory and developmental framework and a peer network. 

For over 35 years Local Authority Arts Offices have worked directly with artists to ensure the arts thrive in all communities.  Working in a grassroots and foundational way has allowed Arts Officers to identify and to respond to the needs of artists, keeping the arts and cultural agenda focussed and relevant in changing environments.

“The bursary seeks to provide artists with the time and resources to think, test new ideas, research new approaches and to reflect and engage with their artistic practice”, said Maureen Kennelly, Arts Council Director. 

“The Arts Council is delighted to partner with local authorities, who are responding thoughtfully and ambitiously to the challenging environment for artists. The carefully considered support network built into Platform 31 sets this bursary scheme apart.” 

The scheme will establish a peer networking framework for participating artists, introducing them to a pool of critical thinkers to share their work and learnings, and encouraging a national conversation about creating work in local contexts. The exact nature of this artist support framework will be informed by the proposals and interests of the 31 artists selected.

The award is open to artists of any discipline and practice, based in Ireland, as well as multi-disciplinary practice and design of all kinds. 

It is designed to support mid-career artists who must have been in receipt of support/investment from a Local Authority Arts Office or the Arts Council within the last three years.  

Applications for Platform 31 open from November 9th-30th. For more information email localartsireland@gmail.com or click here.