Who can apply: a-n Artist members, Joint (Artist and Arts Organiser), Arts Organiser members.
What: 4 x 1 hour fully subsidised mentoring sessions with visual arts mentors.
When: Mentoring sessions will start in November 2019 and take place over 1 year. When each session takes place is for you and your mentor to decide.
Deadline for applications: 12 noon, Thursday 12 September 2019.


Following the success of a-n’s previous mentoring and one-to-one advice programmes in 2017 and 2018, the a-n Mentoring Programme continues to offer professional development support for a-n members.

a-n is working with our independent visual arts mentors to offer a year-long programme of one-to-one sessions for both artist and arts organiser members.

Mentoring sessions are offered remotely, with contact either by phone or video call making sessions flexible and accessible. Each of the 4 sessions will last 1 hour and will be undertaken over 1 year from November 2019.

Alongside this mentoring opportunity, a-n is also offering a 3-6 month Coaching programme. Mentoring and coaching are sometimes discussed as though they are interchangeable, but this isn’t the case. To help understand which might be the best fit for you, find out more about the benefits and differences between mentoring and coaching in a-n’s Resource guide Coaching or Mentoring: which is right for you?.


Mentoring is a supportive, long-term relationship between two people – an experienced ‘mentor’ and less experience ‘mentee’. A mentor takes an advisory role to support you in developing your professional career, with a longer-term view in developing and articulating future goals.

Mentoring can provide you with an opportunity to think about how you might progress in your artistic career and get advice on professional development related issues. You will benefit from their knowledge, insight and experience in the visual arts. A mentor can act as a sounding board, prompt you to consider different perspectives, guide you towards solutions or challenge you to think and behave differently. Your mentor may set you goals or tasks to complete between sessions to progress your development.

The a-n Mentoring Programme offers four one-hour sessions with a mentor over a 12-month period concentrating on the professional side of your practice, rather than focusing solely on how or why you make the work that you do.

Based on your application we will match you to the mentor we feel best suits your needs.  Your mentor will prepare for the sessions using the information provided in this application, and a brief survey we will send prior to the programme commencing.

The focus of the first meeting will be getting to know each other, agreeing mutual expectations of the mentoring and the mentee’s goals. The last meeting will focus on review and setting ongoing objectives.

Areas you might want to explore are (but aren’t limited to):

  • Career review and guidance
  • Review of online representation
  • Guidance in proposing work for exhibition
  • Sustaining an arts practice
  • Fundraising as an individual or for a project
  • Writing for your practice
  • Working collaboratively
  • Working in the public realm

At an early stage in your career, or following a career break an experienced mentor can help you navigate a range of concerns and challenges. If you aren’t sure of a particular need and are looking for general advice and development support this might be best suited to a mentor. They can offer broader advice on navigating the visual arts and your professional development in the sector.

Deadline for applicants: 12 noon, Thursday 12 September 2019.

About the mentors

Bill Campbell, is Founder and Director of Islington Mill, a leading independent space for artists to live, create and showcase their work, based in Salford. Islington Mill produces innovative inter-disciplinary public arts programmes and artist residencies alongside studio spaces. Campbell has held a number of advisory roles including Board Member of Sounds from the City, an annual live music and performance festival.

In 2011 Campbell was awarded the Master of Arts honoris causa by the University of Salford in recognition of outstanding achievements as a Salfordian and contribution to the creative industries within the city of Salford. In 2015 Campbell completed the Clore Fellowship programme which included two residential courses across the year, alongside group workshops focusing on areas including fundraising and philanthropy, public engagement, financial management and strategic planning.

Rosalind Davis is an artist, curator at Collyer Bristow Gallery and a graduate of The Royal College of Art (2005) and Chelsea College of Art (2003). Davis previously co-directed and developed two innovative and dynamic artists’ educational, membership and exhibition arts organisations based in south east London – Zeitgeist Arts Projects (2012-15) and Core Gallery (2009-11). Curatorial projects have also been at Arthouse1 Gallery, Standpoint Gallery, Geddes Gallery and with ZAP at Bond House Gallery (ASC).

Davis is co-author of What they didn’t teach you at art school. Davis lectures at universities, galleries and art organisations across the country including at the Royal College of Art, the ICA, Camden Arts Centre, University of the Arts and Artquest, teaching a range of artist professional development subjects, as well as short courses in social media marketing and arts management at UAL. Davis has mentored for a number of years including for a-n, Shape, UKYA (where she is also an ambassador) as well as independently. As an artist Davis has exhibited nationally and internationally in a wide range of galleries and has had a number of solo shows in London. She is also a member of the Undead Painters, a painting forum and exhibiting group.

Lucy Day is Director of A Woman’s Place Project CIC and a curator with many years experience developing exhibitions in private, public and artist led spaces. She graduated as an artist from Norwich School of Art in 1989 before working for SPACE Studios for five years, leaving in 2005 as Director of Arts Training and Resources and Co-Director of Exhibitions. A Woman’s Place was founded to question and address the contemporary position of women in the creative, historical and cultural landscape In 2018 ‘A Woman’s Place at Knole’ launched new commissions by Lubaina Himid, CJ Mahony, Lindsay Seers, Emily Speed, Alice May Williams and Melanie Wilson at National Trust Knole.

In 2006 Day formed curating partnership Day+Gluckman with Eliza Gluckman. They have worked with a variety of organisations and spaces including: Collyer Bristow LLP, V&A, National Trust, Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery, Plymouth Arts Centre, Newlyn Art Gallery, Bexley Heritage Trust and the Canal and Rivers Trust.

Day has supported artists and arts organisers through mentoring, workshops and organisational change. She has worked with a-n since 2010 leading Navigating the Art World and What’s It Worth workshops and regularly works with Artquest. She is Visiting Practitioner for University of the Arts London (Wimbledon College of Art) and lectures at art colleges nationally, and is also a commissioned writer on visual arts practice and exhibitions, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Clore Leadership short course alumnus (Clore50, 2017).

Emilia Telese is an award-winning artist, writer and academic. A graduate of the 600-year-old Academy of Fine Arts in Florence, living in the UK since 1997, her practice spans several art forms, from interactive and body-responsive technology, film and live art to installation and public art. She has exhibited worldwide since 1994, including at Ars Electronica, ZKM, Venice Biennale, the Louvre, Paris and the Freud Museum, London.

A former Arts Council England regional member and Artists’ Networks Coordinator for a-n, Telese is passionate about the financial sustainability of artists’ work. She is a specialist in professional practice for artists, lecturing and speaking at over 30 UK and European art institutions and organisations. Since 2001 she has created and led Dodge The Shredder, a series of workshops empowering artists to fundraise effectively and create a financial strategy for their practice. Dodge the Shredder has been described as the leading workshop of its kind in the UK.

Telese is a CDA AHRC PhD researcher in Cultural Policy at the University of Loughborough looking at the economic value of artists in the UK economy.

How to apply

Applications are submitted via this form

You must be logged in to access the form. Only current Artist, Joint (Artist and Arts Organiser) and Arts Organiser members can apply. The form is available until Thursday 12th September 2019, 12 noon.

You will be asked for the following:

1. Your contact details.

2. Provide a short artist statement about your practice (up to 150 words).

3. Why is taking part in this mentoring programme critical to your artistic and professional development? (up to 150 words).

4. Why is now the right time for you to take part in this mentoring programme? (up to 150 words).

5. What would you like to achieve through these mentoring sessions? Please be specific as this will help us to match you with the mentor we feel will be best suited to you. The more specific you are with your goals, the easier it is for us to match you with someone appropriate.

6. Which areas of your career do you particularly need support with? Areas you might consider but are not limited to are:
Career review and guidance, Review of online presentation, Guidance in proposing work for an exhibition, Sustaining and arts practice, Fundraising as an individual or for a project, Writing for your practice, Working collaboratively, Working in public realm, Commissioning, Developing event and performance based projects.

7. Health or access needs. Please let us know if you have any health or access needs that you want a-n and the allocated mentor to be aware of. This information will be treated confidentially. a-n asks that you take full responsibility and care for your physical and mental well-being during the mentoring programme.

8. Upload of your current CV (in pdf format – max file size 5mb) and link to your website.

9. Equality and Diversity monitoring information (this information is separated, anonymised and does not form part of the selection process).

Further information

1. Who can apply?

Current a-n Artist, Joint (Artist and Arts Organiser) and Arts Organiser members.

Become an a-n member here.

Alongside applying for the a-n Mentoring programme, a-n members are also welcome to apply for the a-n Coaching and Writer Development Programme opportunities currently available. However successful applicants will only be offered a place on one of these programmes.

2. What is the selection process?

Applicants will be reviewed against the following criteria:

  • The impact mentoring will have on the applicants practice and continuing professional development.
  • The need for support, is this the right time for the applicant to benefit significantly from mentoring.
  • Does the applicant have clear goals for the mentoring programme?
  • Applicants will hear back if their submission has been successful or unsuccessful by 11 October 2019.

3. Why does a-n offer mentoring?

a-n member opportunities such as mentoring aim to:

  • Support members’ practices and ongoing professional development.
  • Enable members to self-determine and tailor professional development to their needs.
  • Maintain and develop a more diverse, engaged and resilient professional membership.

4.  What can’t be supported?

  • Application from students on an undergraduate course.
  • Applications from members without a current a-n membership.
  • Applications from members who have already accepted an a-n Artist Bursary 2019.
  • Any incomplete applications or applications received after the deadline of Thursday 12 September 2019, 12 noon.

5. Conditions and notes:

  • In submitting an application, you confirm that you meet the eligibility criteria (See FAQ ‘Who can apply’) and are not excluded by any of the exclusions (See FAQ ‘What Can’t Be Supported?’).
  • Unfortunately, a-n can’t respond to requests for advice in shaping applications.
  • We advise not leaving the sending of your application to the last day.
  • The decision to award or not is at the discretion of a-n The Artists Information Company
  • Accepting an offer of mentoring comes with the obligation to produce a blog. The blog is not about the sessions themselves but about your practice and its development to enable shared learning and progress with the artists’ community on a-n.co.uk/blogs. Blogs can be completed by text, video, audio and/or images – guidance will be sent to successful candidates.
  • Accepting an offer of mentoring comes with the obligation to commit to four x 1 hour sessions during the programme. a-n will share guidance for mentors and mentees to all successful applicants to clarify expectations and boundaries for the sessions.
  • Successful applicants will be asked to complete a short survey prior to the sessions beginning to set a baseline for evaluation.
  • By accepting a bursary offer you commit to taking part in evaluation of the bursary programme and providing feedback following activity completion.
  • All conversations between a-n members and coaches will be treated privately.
  • a-n members will only be able to accept one a-n member opportunity each in 2019.