Starter Studio Programme for Silversmiths and Jewellers 2012

The Yorkshire Artspace Starter Studio Programme for Silversmiths and Jewellers is 10 years old and this year we are offering places for up to 3 early-career, ambitious and dedicated makers from October 2012 onwards for a maximum of 2 years. You will join our supportive community of current starters Zoe Watts, Chiara Bet, Cathy Sutherland and Alexander Kerrison who are sharing this excellent workshop based at our city-centre flagship building Persistence Works Studios. Successful applicants will have 24/7 access to this space. Each starter will also benefit from our tailored business start up course , mentor support from our team of established silversmiths and jewellers including our technical design expert Cameron Maxfield who helps out once a week. All silversmiths and jewellers selected for the programme will also enjoy a free hall-marking service from Sheffield Assay Office who is keen supporter of the programme. Further details and an application form can be downloaded from our starter studio website page.

We are very excited to have been selected for the Crafts Council's HotHouse 2013 programme. Yorkshire Artspace will be part of a Northern cohort that also includes the Bluecoat Display Centre in Liverpool. Equally pleased are we to announce the imminent launch of the new 'Made North' gallery at Persistence Works, managed by the director of Culture North Patrick Murphy. We hope that as many of our starter artists as possible will benefit from these new partnerships.

We welcome visits from prospective candidates any time during the year. Please contact the programme manager Mir Jansen, either by email or telephone 0114 2130111. Deadline for applications: Friday 13th July /Start date: early October 2012.  Please note that we welcome early applications and will consider offering places earlier to applicants who we deem suitable.

Some Background on the Programme:

Studio 10 - the silversmiths starter studio - is a 108m2 shared space equipped with individual benches and storage space, a hearth with torch and a range of machinery and tools. The programme has supported 22 silversmiths and jewellers to date, 5 of whom now have their own workspace at Persistence Works. The programme has provided excellent support from established silversmiths Chris Knight, Brett Payne and Maria Hanson. We have recently added Rebecca Joselyn, a previous beneficiary of the programme, and jeweller Jennie Gill to our cohort of mentors. All the mentors have their own workspace at Persistence Works Studios.

Persistence Works Studios opened in November 2001 and was one of the first purpose built artists studio complexes in the UK with studios for visual artsists and makers working in a variety of practices: furniture makers; sculptors, painters and printmakers; textile artists; mixed media and installation artists; fine art photographers and film makers; jewellers etc. In November 2011 we celebrated its 10th anniversary with the exhibition: PW10, limited edition artworks by Yorkshire Artspace artists for sale.

 The programme has excellent links with the Sheffield Assay Office who have supported the programme from its humble beginnings and continue to provide two commission opportunities and a free hall-marking service to everyone on the programme. Selected candidates also have access to the extensive Assay Office library at the Guardian's Hall on Beulah Road in Sheffield.

Museums Sheffield: Millennium Galleries houses the prestigious Metalwork Gallery. Over the last 8 years we have built excellent relationships with Museums Sheffield and all our silversmiths have been given the chance to create a new piece of work, commissioned by the Sheffield Assay Office, which will be displayed at the Museum for a period of 6 months. These 'Little Gems' commissions have been donated to the Museum's metalwork gallery or have remained in the private silverware collection of the Sheffield Assay Office. Zoe Watts and Alexander Kerrison were the latest silvermiths selected for Little Gems 2012 and their new silverware pieces are currently on display in the main reception area of Millennium Gallery.

Yorkshire Artspace is also actively involved with the bi-annual Galvanize Sheffield festival of contemporary metal. Our next festival will take place in May 2013, co-inciding with a year long celebration of 'stainless steel, developed in Sheffield by metallurgist Harry Brearly in 1913. All of our previous beneficiaries have been featured in past Galvanize Sheffield festivals and we hope this will again be the case for our 2013 festival.

The Starter Studio Programme for Silversmiths and Jewellers has received support from Arts Council England, Sheffield Assay Office, Sheffield Church Burgesses Educational Foundation and Sheffield Town Trust