a-n Artist Bursaries 2020 are open for application with 50+ bursaries of £500-£1,500 available to a-n Artist and Joint (Artist and Arts Organiser) members wishing to undertake self-determined professional development over the coming year.

Because targeted funding at the right time in an artist’s career can make all the difference, a-n Artist Bursaries provide money for artists to develop their practice through self-determined professional development activity that responds to their own unique needs.

Since 2013 a-n has awarded £579,500 to over 640 members through its bursary programmes.

Members have used the bursaries to a fund a diverse range of professional development projects: to learn new skills, travel internationally, undertake mentoring or coaching, research, curatorial critique, attend conferences, build networks and collaborations within and outside of the visual arts, or a combination of these activities.

Applications for a-n Artist Bursaries 2020 are open now. Find out more and apply using the online application process. Deadline for applications: 12 noon, Thursday 21 November 2019

In 2019, recipients of a-n Artist Bursaries undertook a broad range of activities. Here, we profile just a few of those projects.

Sarah Kogan was awarded £1,200 to attend the 58th Venice Biennale as a first time exhibitor. Her work was included in two exhibitions – ‘Miniscule Venice’ and ‘Fit the Slit’ – both curated by Vanya Balogh. She also used her time in Venice to visit galleries and expand her network by meeting curators, art critics, gallerists and other artists.

Kogan said: “As a direct result of my a-n bursary award there has been a major turning point in my career as an artist. I have secured gallery representation and as a female mid-career artist, its value cannot be underestimated.

“As well as exhibiting in Venice during the Biennale, I have been invited to participate both as curator and artist in three further exhibitions, including at the Blyth Gallery, Imperial College, London.”

Rachel Ara received £1,450 to immerse herself in the Seoul and Vienna art scenes. She was already in Korea and Austria exhibiting in ‘Vertiginous Data’ at MMCA, Seoul, and at the Vienna Biennale. Her a-n bursary allowed her to stay on beyond the installation periods of each show to spend time visiting galleries, museums, establishing new contacts and carrying out research.

On her time in South Korea and Austria, Ara said: “I made some good, long lasting connections. Having time to network in both cities has opened up more possibilities of international shows and my research is feeding into current and upcoming projects.”

Louise Orwin, who creates research-based performance projects about ‘what it means to be female in a world that prizes patriarchal, heteronormative narratives’, received a bursary of £1,450 to work with an experienced mentor for a focused period of professional development. “I came away from our sessions feeling better equipped and more confident in myself and my work,” said Orwin.

She also used her bursary award to join IETM, the International network for contemporary performing arts, and attended its Plenary conference in Hull. She has since received tour bookings and a week of supported R&D, and as a result of her mentoring has now taken on a full time producer with plans to develop her company further.

Speaking about her a-n Artist Bursary, glass artist Helen Slater Stokes, who was awarded £1,200 to attend the Glass Art Society Conference 2019 in St Petersburg Florida, said: “My visit was the trip of a lifetime which has increased my profile and inspired me to push my career further. Thank you a-n for making it possible.”

Need support in submitting your application? Read our Top tips on applying for a-n member opportunities guide.

a-n Artist Bursaries are open to current a-n Artist or Joint (Artist and Arts Organiser) members. Not yet a member? Find out more and Join a-n today


1. Artist Sarah Kogan with her painting Aftershock, at Miniscule Venice 2019. Photo: Vanya Balogh.
2. Rachel Ara, This Much I’m Worth (The self-evaluating artwork), at Vertiginous Data, MMCA, Seoul, South Korea, 2019.
3. Louise Orwin, CRY CRY KILL KILL. Photo: Field and McGlynn
4. Helen Slater Stokes, Geometric Perspective, 2019. Photo: Ester Segarra Photography

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