Down Stairs are looking to find artists for our 2014 Residency programme.

Prospective residents should be committed to contributing to a dynamic and diverse residency program that is grounded by the idea of collaboration through the act of residing in Kieren Reed’s Social Sculpture (2012 – ).

We are particularly interested to hear from artists or makers whom can spend at least part of, if not all of, their stay contributing in some manifestation to a more analogous dialogue between past and future residents, as well as ourselves and artist Kieren Reed by developing an aspect of the work, the area surrounding around it, or work in response to it.

Located in the grounds of Great Brampton House, residents will stay in Social Sculpture a small building designed to accommodate one person. It is equipped with a single bed, duvet, blanket, linen and towels. There is running water that can be used for washing or food preparation, and a toilet. There is no power. Studio space and a workshop are located in The Stables, a converted stable block which also houses more extensive cooking and washing facilities.

There is no prescribed length of time for a residency but we would not expect applicants to stay for anything less than one week, or more than four weeks. Therefore we would encourage potential applicants to think both about what it is they want to bring to the residency, as well as what they want to achieve from it.

Applicants should be aware that this is an entirely self-sufficient residency, in a relatively isolated location. The nearest shop, pub and church are 1 mile away in the village of Madley. There is a bicycle for use by residents, but you are welcome to bring your own transport, or walk. You can get to Great Brampton by public transport from Hereford bus station. The incumbent resident will be reliant on the previous resident to have washed the linen, cleaned and tidied.

By way of a peppercorn rent the owners of Great Brampton House have requested that visiting artists donate a work of their making at the end of their stay (or by negotiation afterwards) to their collection.

Duration and Dates
The residencies will take place in between May and September 2014. Down Stairs will work with the selected artists to ensure that the dates and duration of their residency are as beneficial as possible for the artist and Down Stairs.

Selection Criteria & Process
Selection for residency will be based upon the following criteria:
The quality of your ideas and work.
Your need for a period of research and development
Your reasons for applying to this residency programme.

Deadline for Applications
The deadline for applications is Friday 28th February.
All applicants will be notified of the outcome of their submission by Monday 17th March.

Submission of Applications
Please submit the following information:
Postal, e-mail and website addresses, daytime and evening contact telephone number(s).
Please include this information in a covering e-mail when submitting your application:
• A brief statement (no more than one sides of A4) describing:
• Your current artistic practice
• The reasons for your interest in this residency
• How the opportunity provided by this residency will impact upon your work and development
• A current CV
• Documentation of recent work. Maximum of 10 images. Please supply an image list with details of all work presented.
• Film, video and audio work should be submitted via vimeo.com or youtu.be. Maximum duration 5 minutes.
PLEASE NOTE, WE CAN ONLY ACCEPT E-MAIL ATTACHMENTS UP TO 5MB IN SIZE.

Please email your application to office@downstairsgallery.co.uk with the title ‘2014 Residencies’ and your name.

Download this information Down Stairs Residency 2014

Residency History
When we begun Down Stairs in 2011 the residency program was originally conceived to run in parallel to our exhibition program in the gallery spaces of Great Brampton House, occasionally converging, with small exhibitions at the culmination of a residential period, or residencies that lay groundwork for shows at a later date.

Great-Brampton-House-and-The-Stables

For visiting artists (as well as for ourselves) we created a studio complex in an old stable block, cunningly named The Stables, which feature both individual studio spaces and communal workshops with a basic set of tools and machinery, as well as a large living area with cooking facilities.  Artists stayed in a small cottage on the grounds of Great Brampton House, or if that was being used, with us in the spare room of the house we lived in.

The-Stables-Workshop

As time passed we began to realise that the interaction with artists in residence was the most rewarding, fruitful and beneficial aspect of what we’d created for all concerned. Although many member of the public visited and raved about (in both positive and negative senses) the exhibitions we mounted in the galleries, we began to examine what form we wanted Down Stairs to take in the future. Selfishly, we decided to focus on developing relationships and fostering knowledge more intimately through the residency programme, whilst experimenting with alternative ways to work with an audience.

We discussed with artist Kieren Reed the possibility of installing his piece Social Sculpture as the lynchpin of our residency. Practically, as a place for artists to stay, but more ephemerally perhaps as the woodland set idyl we ourselves had dreamed of when locating to Herefordshire to establish Down Stairs.

Social-Sculpture

We installed the work during the summer of 2013. Adding the basics of running water and a toilet, along with minimal furnishings, Social Sculpture was then host to its initial two residents Elliot Burns, followed by Jonny Briggs.

Now we are looking to find artists for our 2014 residency programme who are interested in working with the parameters our collaboration with Kieren Reed has begun to establish.

By all means, take a look at our Artists in Residence page to see in more detail how people have used their time spent here previously, but also note our revised criteria within the 2014 application process which may preclude some types of practice.

Social Sculpture is a small tin roofed, timber clad building designed to comfortably accommodate one person. It comes with a single bed, one change of linen, a duvet and towels.

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There is running cold water to a large butler sink, which can be used for washing or food preparation.

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There is a flushing toilet in a small extension we added during initial instillation.

Social-Sculpture-Toilet

There is no power to the cabin. A solar powered rechargeable lantern is provided, as is a wind up torch, a battery operated Roberts LW/MW radio, and the more modern trappings of a bluetooth speaker set. Power for charging, general use, tools and the like can be found in the Stables.

At present there are no cooking or heating facilities in the Cabin other than a fire pit with a grill stand. Cooking facilities, along with a very basic shower electrically heated shower can be found in the communal spaces of The Stables.

We request residents document and convey their ongoing experiences via our blog.