Here in London, the global health pandemic has crippled a creative industry already on its knees. “The need for spaces where artists can connect and be supported is vitally important,” says Joe Scotland, director of the Clapham-based Studio Voltaire, which this week launched an award with the Loewe Foundation to support under-represented artists in the capital.

In an official statement, Scotland explains that London has, “lost significant numbers of studio spaces in the last three years and it’s estimated that more than a third of existing studio spaces will vanish by 2024.” The award launched by the two parties will grant seven artists with two years free studio space, alongside a £2,000 bursary each, mentorship and opportunities to exhibit their works domestically and abroad.

That’s not all. A second phase of the award – announced later this year – will invite one international artist to take part in a year-long residency at Studio Voltaire, coinciding with the gallery’s re-opening in October 2021.

“Supporting creativity is at the heart of all Loewe does and it is therefore a great privilege for the Loewe Foundation to support this vital new initiative, especially in light of the impact Covid-19 has had on the artistic community,” writes Loewe creative director Jonathan Anderson. “I have long admired Studio Voltaire and the work it does and am delighted we can be a part of it.”

The deadline to apply for the Loewe Foundation/Studio Voltaire award is April 26 at 6pm GMT. Apply here.

loewe.com

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