The Showroom

OPEN CALL: Communal Knowledge

Residency with The Showroom and Imperial Health Charity, St Mary’s Hospital Paediatric Services
DEADLINE: Midnight Sunday 7th January
Interviews - week commencing 15 January


The Showroom and Imperial Health Charity are inviting artists to submit proposals for a new collaborative project. This is an opportunity for artists who wish to develop their practice through working in the healthcare environment and collaborating with young patients. The Residency will work with St Mary’s Hospital Paediatric Services near Paddington and will take place over a period of six months from February 2018.

The approach:
• The residency will offer an opportunity for an artist/collective to develop their practice as part of a collaborative process with young people from St Mary’s Hospital Paediatric Services
• The residency aims to create a collaborative experience and bring a positive perspective into the healthcare environment, inviting young patients to learn about contemporary practice and contribute creatively and critically in the process
• During the Residency, the selected artist/collective will engage with patients and outpatients at St Mary’s Hospital Paediatric Services. The unit treats young people with a wide range of conditions and is also home to Chelsea Community Hospital School a 'community special school', providing education for children and young people aged 4 – 18 while they are in hospital.
• The age and the number of the patients involved will vary throughout the project. We anticipate that there will be between 2 and 15 young people aged between 6 and 16 years old at each session and that very few young people will take part in several sessions.
• Sessions will take place at either bedside or in communal spaces. Some young people are likely to be in isolation, due to immunosuppressive conditions.
• The successful applicant will take a critically engaged approach to collaborative practice to produce an alternative body of knowledge gained through communal activity and experience.
• Much of the emphasis is on finding ways to re-think or ‘unlearn’ established norms, values, codes, roles and relations, to create visibility and discourse.

Collaborative framework and timeline:
The Residency will work out of the St Mary’s Hospital Paediatric Services near Paddington and will take place over a period of six months from February 2018. There is no fixed space or studio provision for the residency, the artist will work across hospital wards and The Showroom for meetings and workshop delivery with self managed research and production time outside of this.

The artist will visit St Mary’s Hospital Paediatric Services, facilitating a minimum of 8 sessions for the patients/outpatients of the unit for a maximum of 2 hours over a period of 6 months in agreement with Imperial Health Charity and The Showroom. Imperial Health Charity will fully support the residency, using their experience in hospitals. There will be regular opportunities to discuss progress with all partners throughout the project.

With a focus on process, collaborate research and production outcomes for the residency are flexible and can work across The Showroom and the hospital.

The artist will be paid a fee of £2,500 with an addition production budget managed by The Showroom available for workshops and supporting outcome(s).

Individual applicants or collective projects are invited to apply.

The artist must be outside of higher education and practicing as an artist for at least two years.

The selected practitioner will need to be extremely sensitive towards the unit’s unique environment. It is essential to consider how the works produced will affect participants as well as other patients, staff and visitors to the hospital.

Experience of working in a challenging and rapidly changing environment is useful along with enthusiasm and highly developed interpersonal skills.

To apply please send the below info to [email protected]

• CV - 2 pages max, pdf format
• Short Statement - 600 words max, answering the following:
Introduce your practice
Tell us why is this opportunity of interest to you/your collective?
Make a brief project proposal – this can be a description of your approach with possible key areas of interest.
• Examples of Practice: up to 9 images, website, and/or up to 3 web links (images/video/sound) include passwords if necessary.

DEADLINE: Midnight Sunday 7th January

Applicants will be shortlisted from the supporting information submitted and will be contacted for an interview w/c January 15th 2018. The selection panel will be made up of representatives from The Showroom, St Mary’s Hospital and Imperial Healthcare Charity

The commission will be a collaborative project between The Showroom and Imperial Health Charity. Imperial Health Charity is the main charity supporting the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, helping the Trust do more through grants, arts, volunteering and fundraising. The charity manages a museum accredited collection with three temporary exhibition spaces. The charity also runs a growing participatory arts programme offering patients the opportunity to engage with art during their treatment. The programme focuses on using art as a medium to aid the healing process, improving patient care and offering distraction in an often distressing environment.