Creative Wayfinding OPEN CALL

Deadline: 22/05/2023  |  Venue: Ridgeway  |  City: Thamesmead  |  Region: Greater London  |  Country: United Kingdom  |  Gallery No.32: Meg Stuart and Kieran Idle

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We're bringing art to the outdoors and our next stop is the Ridgeway path in Thamesmead. At present, there is very little signage on the Ridgeway to help users navigate the path, or to provide people with interesting info about this local resource. The Ridgeway Users are looking for an artist or collective to work with the community to spruce up this site as it undergoes nature conservation works by commissioning two Creative Wayfinding Interpretation Boards to be permanently installed along the Ridgeway Path.

Witness to the filming of multi-award-winning movie, A Clockwork Orange, and the well-known TV series, Misfits, the Ridgeway is a site of cultural value and interest, as well as being a key nature conservation area and busy walking and cycling route connecting South East London. The Ridgeway Users are looking to improve the space for users and natural habitats by comisssioning the co-creation of two Creative Wayfinding Interpretation Boards providing information and signage for the Ridgeway working with local people and creatives.

THIS IS A PAID OPPORTUNITY supported by the Mayor of London's Rewild London Fund. 

What’s going to happen – The North West Kent Countryside Partnership (NWKCP) along with the Bumblebee Conservation Trust (BCT), the University of East London (UEL) and Bow Arts in collaboration with Thames Water, the owner of the Ridgeway will be undertaking work to improve the habitat of the Ridgeway for native bees, creating a Thamesmead pollinator corridor.

They will be organising conservation events including wildflower planting sessions, with local people, and bee identification workshops with local school children.

This project is supported by the Mayor of London, through the Rewild London Fund.

What we are looking for – We are looking for a local artist to co-design signage for the Ridgeway. It is intended that the signage will take inspiration and material from these conservation events with local people as the basis for two interpretation boards. These boards will be installed on the Ridgeway to help users navigate the pathway and provide interesting information about the local flora and fauna (see attached figure for possible installation sites).

The final piece is expected to be made of metal or recycled materials, durable and fit for purpose in line with relevant safety guidelines. The piece can be up to 2 metres in length and 1 metre in height, either affixed directly to a concrete base or mounted on legs affixed to a concrete base. It should be fabricated in a way that it is resistant to vandalism and can withstand all weathers in an outdoor context for an anticipated 10 year period.

Requirements for the commissioned artist – The winning artist is required to attend at least two conservation events related to the Thamesmead Pollinator corridor to capture both the learning and action outcomes from these events, for example the bee species/ flower types spotted by the school children. 

The artist is expected to host between 3 and 5 artist workshops with local people to gather further information for the interpretation boards.

The artist with also be expected to attend bimonthly project meetings (online or on site) and provide monthly updates to NWKCP on progress with development of the signage, including one prototype of each interpretation board to NWKCP and Thames Water, and other information for evaluation of the project including attendance of local people at the artist workshops.

The artist may also be asked to contribute to marketing and promotional activities for the Thamesmead Pollinator Corridor, including unveiling of the final interpretation boards.

Artist experience (essential/ desirable)

Essential criteria - experience of community engagement, experience of design for the public realm

Desirable criteria - previous experience with nature conservation or environmental concern, aesthetic quality

Contact the curator
Who is eligible for this opportunity?
Artist experience (essential/ desirable)
Essential criteria - experience of community engagement, experience of design for the public realm
Desirable criteria - previous experience with nature conservation or environmental concern, aesthetic quality
When is the deadline?
Proposals must be submitted by 22 May 2023.

Following this;
Winning artist to attend wildflower planting sessions and bee identification workshops – Summer- Autumn 2023
Artist run community consultation workshops to develop the Interpretation workshops – Autumn-Winter 2023
Completion of two interpretation boards by March 2024
When is the delivery date?
March 2024.

Timescale:
Winning artist to attend wildflower planting sessions and bee identification workshops – Summer- Autumn 2023
Artist run community consultation workshops to develop the Interpretation workshops – Autumn-Winter 2023
Completion of two interpretation boards by March 2024
Thames Water will work with the artist to maintain the signage following its installation
Are there payments to artists?
Breakdown of fees paid to artists:
Artist fee - £1000
Material costs for workshops to develop the interpretation boards (this includes the cost to develop one prototype, and all amendments to meet health and safety requirements) - £2000
Fabrication and production (this includes fixing/installing the boards & transporting the boards to the site) - £3000
Other incurred costs (travel & expenses) - £300
What is the selection process?
The selection of the winning artist will be undertaken by a committee with representatives from NWKCP, BCT, Bow Arts, Thames Water, local Ridgeway Users and Gallery No.32. The winning artist will be informed by NWKCP.

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