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  • Artist Advancement Programme Posted 19 April 2021

    Concept Touring is a commissioning programme for artists to develop concepts for international touring projects with little or no human travel.

    The pandemic has limited travel and touring. The climate crisis is accelerating. Internationalism has never been more important. In the face of xenophobia and populism on the one hand, and the power of global movements on the other, Concept Touring supports new worldwide solidarity and ways of working together.

    The residency creates conditions for artists to incubate and develop ambitious and exciting ideas, initiate new ways of international working, compare notes, speak with peers and other artists and to be mentored by leading international programmers and artists. We’re in new territory and we want to support artists to research and explore together.

    We have gathered a group of artists to develop or adapt ideas and explore new ways to work, tour, exhibit and collaborate internationally, so that ideas, processes and can work travel, but artists do not. In the immediate-term, these formats will draw us together despite the raging pandemic, and in the long-term, they’ll set a standard for touring and international collaboration which is ecologically sustainable and forges new ties between global and local artists, participants and audiences.

    From an incredible 294 applications we have selected (with great difficulty) nine participating artists/artistic duos from around the world. In making this selection, the group composition was important. We sought a mix of projects which were in advanced and beginning stages, a mix of solos and duos, a regional and disciplinary mix. The selected artists’ explorations include a site-based audio performance for shopping malls, a project about touch and contagion, an excavation into the banal objects and characters of suburbia and a short-wave radio project designed to short-circuit a potential digital blackout.

    The Artists

    Dickie Beau (London)

    Erin Brubacher & Peter McMaster (Toronto & Glasgow)

    Gemma Paintin & James Stenhouse – Action Hero (Bristol)

    Giorgia Ohanesian Nardin (Milan)

    Maiko Yamamoto (Vancouver)

    Namatshego Khutsoane & Sacha Yanow (Johannesburg & New York)

    Omar Elerian & Nassim Soleimanpour (London & Berlin)

    Persis Jadé Maravala (London & Rio de Janeiro)

    Rhiannon Armstrong & Tim Spooner (London)


    The Mentors

    Carla Nobre Sousa, Co-Director, Alkantara (Lisbon)

    Low Kee Hong, Director (Theatre), West Kowloon Cultural District (Hong Kong)

    Kopano Maroga, Dramaturge, Vooruit (Ghent)

    LJ Findlay-Walsh, Artistic Director, Take Me Somewhere (Glasgow)

    To learn more about the participating artists and mentors, read their bios.

    If you would like to be kept up to date with the project, sign up to receive LIFT’s monthly newsletter.

    This project is part of a larger Artist Advancement series at LIFT, a group of interventions and initiatives that strengthen ties between UK and international artists.