A bursary programme supported by 21 universities and art schools in 15 countries is enabling students who were impacted by the fire at Glasgow School of Art’s Mackintosh Building earlier this year to continue their studies.

The Phoenix Bursary progamme was set up by Glasgow School of Art (GSA) in the immediate aftermath of the fire to ensure that the 100 affected artists – who were unable to present a full body of work in last summer’s final year degree show – could develop their practice and create a new work.

Artists taking part in the programme receive up to 15 weeks studio time plus academic support at their chosen university, along with a weekly stipend of £315 and up to £1,000 for materials. Art schools supporting the programme include those in USA, Europe and Asia, as well as several in the UK.

The programme has been supported by a £750,000 grant from the Scottish Government and was officially launched by Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, during a visit earlier this week to The Whisky Bond in Glasgow, where GSA has created new studio space for those students who have stayed on in the city.

Impact of fire

Speaking about the impact of the fire and the importance of the bursary awards, Hyslop said: “The fire saw Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s iconic building making the headlines for all the wrong reasons, and for those talented students whose work was destroyed, it was a truly heart breaking moment.

“The Scottish Government was keen to assist final year students, and it is fantastic to see new works in progress in the studio spaces facilitated by the Phoenix Bursaries scheme.”

Announcing a special showcase exhibition of new works created by artists taking part in the programme, Professor Tom Inns, director of The Glasgow School of Art, added: “We have been bowled over by the support that we have received from the academic community since the fire. The generosity of our sister schools within the UK and overseas is enabling these talented artists to have the vital studio space and the time to make new work.

“Although all the artists who graduated last summer were able to participate in a degree show they were not able to show a full body of work. This special exhibition, which will be staged in a central Glasgow location in spring 2015, will give them that important opportunity.”

You can follow the progress of artists taking part in the Phoenix Bursary programme at gsaphoenix.blogspot.com

Institutions supporting the programme:

Art Institute Chicago, USA; Bergen Academy of Art and Design, Norway; California College of Art, San Francisco, USA; Concordia, Montreal, Canada; Emily Carr, Vancouver, Canada; Iceland Academy of the Arts, Reykjavik, Iceland; Leeds College of Art, England; Leipzig Academy of Visual Arts, Germany; Leith School of Art, Edinburgh, Scotland; Manchester School of Art, England; Massachusetts College of Art and Design, Boston, USA; Mongolian State University of Arts and Culture, Ulan Bator, Mongolia; Oslo National Academy of the Arts, Norway; Pratt Institute, New York, USA; Rhode Island School of Design, USA; University of the Arts Berlin, Germany; University of the Arts Helsinki, Finland; University of the Arts London (Camberwell College of Art), England; The University of Edinburgh, Scotland; Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam, Netherlands; Zurich University of the Arts, Switzerland. In addition artists will also be in Mexico City, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong and Singapore.