Brass Tacks - Open Call for Newcastle Artists

Deadline: 20/07/2023  |  Venue: Newcastle Arts Centre  |  City: Newcastle Upon Tyne  |  Region: Northumberland  |  Country: United Kingdom  |  Jed Buttress

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Newcastle Arts Centre and Creative Central: NCL are pleased to announce an open call for local artists to take part in an exhibition and mentoring opportunity this autumn.


This project has been supported by the Creative Central: NCL programme, funded by the North of Tyne Combined Authority and Newcastle City Council.

'Brass Tacks' is a new project that offers mentoring, support and exhibition opportunities for emerging and established artists. Four selected artists will exhibit their artworks in the newly-refurbished Newcastle Arts Centre Gallery, in an exhibition as part of a six-month programme of events, exhibitions and skills development opportunities for emerging and established local artists. There is no given theme for this open call, but a theme for the show will be developed with the selected artists.

In an eight-week programme, selected artists will each receive support in the following ways:

  • A group exhibition in Newcastle Arts Centre Gallery (open to the public for five weeks)

  • 1:1 mentoring with the Artist Development Coordinator 

  • Exhibition group planning

  • A micro bursary of £1200 for time and materials, paid in instalments

  • Access to a Makerspace to fabricate artworks (1 day)

  • Business skills and professional development support

  • Promotional support (social media, printed advertisements and published press)

  • Technical skills support (for fabrication and installation of artworks)

The exhibition will be open for a total of five weeks, with a preview evening on Friday 8th September. As part of the overarching programme, free workshops will be made available to the public led by some of the selected artists (a further paid opportunity), and an open forum evening for people to attend and discuss careers, opportunities and the artworks on display.

What We Are Looking For

We are looking for local, early-career and more established artists living or working in Newcastle upon Tyne, who are interested in developing their artistic practice in an exhibition context.  In particular, we are looking for individuals who believe that they would benefit from the mentoring and support that this opportunity provides, without prior access to exhibition spaces within the city centre.

We are open to all media and will assist in the process of developing new work if necessary and possible. We are also interested in works that explore social, cultural, and political ideas, with particular reference to the local geographic area.


Work can be made for sale at the event and is subject to a 33% gallery fee (77% artist fee).

Selection Process

Our Artist Development Coordinator will meet with members of the Newcastle Arts Centre Board of Trustees to select the artists and their works and their decision will be final. The panel will consider the following criteria:

  • The quality of the work

  • Whether the artist will benefit from the skills development programme

  • The originality of the work

Please note, if successful, your final artwork must be delivered to the Newcastle Arts Centre no later than 28th August.

Artists are responsible for their own insurance and the prompt collection of any unsold work.

We look forward to receiving your submissions!


  • Submission deadline…Thursday 20th July, 11:59pm

  • Participants informed by… Thursday 3rd August

  • Installation week… Begins Saturday 2nd September

  • Exhibition launch… Friday 8th September, 5pm.

  • Deinstall week… 16th October - 20th October

This opportunity has been made possible by Creative Central: NCL (formerly known as Newcastle City’s Culture & Creative Zone).

Contact the curator
Who is eligible for this opportunity?
Artists must be 18+ and must be currently living or working in Newcastle Upon Tyne. Furthermore, artists must be available for the installation week, exhibition preview, deinstall week and 12 hours of mentoring between 17th August and 31st October. All submissions will be considered according to the above criteria. Artists must be able to demonstrate a Right to Work in the United Kingdom and be prepared to submit invoices for micro-bursary payments.
When is the deadline?
July 20th, 11:59pm.
How many works can I submit?
Up to 5 images of previous, relevant works can be submitted. The number of exhibited artworks will be collaboratively discussed and decided with each artist.
When is the delivery date?
Final artworks to be delivered Monday 28th August.
When do I need to collect my work?
October 16th - 20th (TBC).
How much does it cost?
No charge to submit or exhibit.
Are there payments to artists?
A Micro-bursary of £1200 will be paid to each selected artist, kindly funded by Creative Central: NCL (formerly known as Newcastle City’s Culture & Creative Zone).

Sales: 77% of the sale price will go to the artist. 33% gallery fee. Works for sale must be discussed with the curator in advance. Exhibited artworks do not need to be for sale.
Is there a private view / opening?
Private View Friday 8th September, 17:00 - 19:00. Artists are expected to attend.
What are the exhibition opening hours?
Exhibition open hours are 09:30 - 17:00, Monday - Saturday.
Does the location have disabled access?
Yes, disabled access and toilets are available.
Do I need to be present?
Selected artists will be promoted in the run up to the event on Social media platforms. Posters, online articles and local press will be published, advertising the exhibition and artists.
Do I need to be present?
Artists will be expected to attend 12 hours of mandatory exhibition planning/artist development sessions between August 17th and October 31st. These sessions are flexible and we will work with you to organise dates and times.
Artists are also expected to attend the install week, preview, and deinstall week.
What happens if my proposal is chosen?
We will notify selected applicants shortly after the deadline, with further details to follow at that point. We will arrange to meet with you to begin exhibition planning.

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