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Thinking about applying? Meet panellist Chloe Osborne...

Get inspired by panellist Chloe Osborne sharing art that has changed her and what she would love to see in an application ...

What excites you about being part of the Artcry panel?

Being able to support artists to create “unfundable” work that packs a political punch in the public realm. Being able to turn around funding decisions fast enough to support high impact artistic responses to the things that are happening now, and now, and now, and now…..

What components would your dream application have?

  • Thought: A time-sensitive political intention

  • Guts: A hefty dose of risk taking (something that hasn’t been done by them/ in this way/ in the public realm/ to achieve this end before)

  • Craft: a medium that’s honed and fit for purpose

  • Impact: something that demands attention

Tell us about a piece of work you've seen that's inspired you and brought about change in your life?

In 2019, travelling through Manchester Piccadilly Station, I stumbled across an unfamiliar vending machine. It stocked familiar products but with totally unaffordable prices.

Mark Dicken’s provocation “The Price of War”*, had price tags that reflect(ed) the financial situation in Yemen. People were stopping to look closer. Commenting about how ridiculous it is for a mars bar to be £11, for a pack of Haribo to cost £20. I overheard someone working out that the budget for their family’s weekly shop would get them 5 items max.

Vending machines are familiar, a known quantity, and people felt free to explore it on their own terms. Some people were totally unaware of the scale and impact of the ongoing conflict in Yemen, some people had never properly considered the link between war and inflation. I hadn’t. That Vending machine made me confront my own complacency, connect with strangers with totally different lived experiences and go home to find out more.

*I later discovered that it was part of the Yemen: Inside a Crisis season at Imperial War Museum North (17 May 2019 -26 January 2020)

For someone newly these ideas what would you draw their attention to from the UK's history of political public art interventions?

There are many brilliant politically minded, interventionist artists based in the UK. These are a few that have made me stand still and take deep breathes.

Southend On Sea based, Laura Keebles site-specific Uncommissioned Public Installations. Keeble uses “symbolism and familiarities of the everyday to question what is dictated to us.” For example, Idol Worship, North Road Cemetary, Southend | Description: Polystyrene, plaster, Spraypaint.

Brixton based, Bureau of Silly IdeasSuper Fictions exploring corporate globalisation

For example - Burst Pipe Dream which explores the politics of town planning and developer investment using subterfuge, humour and unexpected fair ground rides.

Big Oriental Squid inc (BOSinc) is globally setting up Giant Squid Farms in seaside towns. In order to do this successfully they need the public’s help as Squid are attracted to mammal fear pheromones, the best ones are produced by children.

Birmingham based, Fokawolfs public messaging and ad hijacks. In particular his contributions to the Conservative party campaign in 2019 and series on White Privilege.

Black Outdoor Art (#blackoutdoorart) - utilising donated billboard space as a platform for positive Black expression in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement, curated by artist/designer Greg Bunbury in partnership with Brotherhood Media. In particular the works by Bow based, Bokani Tshidzu


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