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Funding for artists

Vivian Ross-Smith at her Da Gadderie exhibition in February, which was enabled by a Shetland Arts funding award.

ARTISTS and craft workers can apply for funding of between £500 and £1,500 from a new award scheme being promoted by Shetland Arts.

The Visual Art and Craft Awards was set up last year by amalgamating two other funding schemes for craft workers and visual artists, which have seen £88,000 handed out to 102 artists and makers since 2007.

The emphasis is on projects and work that will further a practitioner’s creative, professional and economic development.

Applications can be made online here with deadlines on 15 August and 7 November.

Some of the work created by 15 artists who were helped by the award schemes is on display downstairs in the Bonhoga Gallery café, in Weisdale, until 7 September.

One of those artists, Vivian Ross-Smith, said her award last year helped her return to Shetland after studying at Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen and put on a show at Da Gadderie in the Shetland Museum and Archives in February.

“Without the Visual Art and Craft Award I would not have been able to spend the research time and afford the materials and tools to create a new body of work,” she said.

Shetland Arts’ visual arts development officer Clair Aldington said that even small amounts of money could make all the difference for an artist trying to make a living from their work.

The awards are co-funded by Shetland Islands Council and Creative Scotland.