Six artists have been awarded a ‘Four Nations Outdoor Arts Bursary’ to create a new performance for the outdoors.
Surge, in collaboration with Articulture, Spraoi Festival & Green Man Trust offered artists from the UK and Ireland the opportunity to apply for a bursary and artist development opportunity with the aim of creating a selection of new outdoor arts pieces, which will tour to the following festivals in summer 2023:
Green Man (Wales in partnership with Articulture)
Spraoi (Ireland in partnership with ISACS)
Surge Festival (Scotland in partnership with Articulation)
The 2023 selected artists are Gaia Cicolani (Wales), George Hampton Wale (Wales), These Two Idiots (Ireland), Jazzville Productions (Ireland), The Doing Group (Scotland) and [ON AIR] (Scotland/England).
The 2023 Four Nations project started with a four-day residency in rural Argyll, Scotland in January 2023, where the chosen artists got to network and develop their creative ideas with guidance from leading mentors and the festival programmers.
The Four Nations Outdoor Arts Bursaries 2023 are supported by Arts Council of Wales, Creative Scotland, Articulation, the Arts Council of Ireland, Outdoor Arts UK and ISACS.
Meet the Artists from Wales
Gaia Cicolani is an eclectic artist from Torino, Italy, currently based in Cardiff, Wales. Her background is in ballet and contemporary dance and fine art and art history.
Gaia says, “Miss B. is a playful character who is curious about the environment and its inhabitants. She was first spotted doing her thing in her living room, but it is now time to come off the screen! She is out and about looking to make connections and is very excited to share iconic moves with some lucky people she will meet on her way.”
“I am very grateful to be able to develop her project into a live, interactive production that will be presented as a site-specific piece and walkabout. Being one of the Four Nations Bursary recipients is a really wonderful journey, with the right support, amazing experiences, and a lot of great opportunities to connect and get to know the Outdoor Arts and Festival world.”
George Hampton Wale is an artist, designer and maker from Abergavenny, South Wales, working with sewing and textiles to create sculpture, performance and costume.
George says, “For the Four Nations Outdoor Arts Bursary I am working towards developing a new sculpture-performance work called ‘FETCH’ (working title). Fetch is a meteorological term describing the distance travelled by the wind over a body of water in one direction. ‘FETCH’ utilises costume, sound, movement and inflating sculpture as a way to explore and draw attention to the ways in which we move in, on and through a weather-world and how these forces shape our lives.”
“I am interested in thinking about the air and the wind as a material and how we render these ever-present invisible things visible. ‘FETCH’ is part game, part measuring device, part attempted partner dance with the wind. Working with Articulture is an exciting progression in my practice as it will be my first time presenting work outdoors. Connecting with other artists, mentors and producers as a part of the Four Nations cohort has broadened my connections and expanded my practice. “
Meet the Artists from Ireland
Édaein Samuels and Peter Moran, These Two Idiots, present ‘Beach Barrage’. Two Idiots arrive at the beach, both have their own perfect day in mind, but these ideas clash! What could possibly go wrong? Watch as they literally climb over, under and around each other to gain the upper hand.
Jazzville Productions are dance artist Ksenia Parkhatskaya and Irish composer and bassist David Duffy. Prepare to meet ‘The Most Dangerous Animal in The World’. A sheep, exiled and excommunicated from her island community for her adventurous spirit, ends up in the city… Is it dangerous to be different? Can she find a new herd here? And can a sheep dance and sing like a superstar?
Meet the Artists from Scotland/ England
Concerned at the current situation, The Doing Group are undertaking repairs to the festival site as best they can with their limited knowledge. No repair too small, no repair too big, no repair too ethereal, no repair too outside the box. Be prepared to be sub-contracted during this process, they need all the help they can get and they absolutely must use up all of the budget.
[ON AIR] is a visual radio show that explores themes of fantasy, masculinity and blacksploitation. It is co-created by Drag King performers Symoné and Porcha Present in collaboration with scenographers MHz. Gliding through the sun soaked streets of the UK this summer, pirate Radio hosts Barry Badass and ‘The Pussy Tamer’ aka Uncle Pete attempt to find the perfect vibration, connect to the sweet spot and get [ON AIR]! Featuring big ego’s, local psychedelic reporters and Uncle Pete’s magical belly – the crew surf the airwaves and try not to lose. the. siiigggnaaaaal!