What would London be without its artists? As one of the most historically creative cities in the world – having been home to seminal artists such as Francis Bacon, Tracey Emin, and Lucien Freud – it’s a thought which feels far-fetched. But artists continue to be priced out of a city they helped shape, and are instead looking outside London for studios – many even moving abroad. With studios being shut down and redeveloped, the idea of having a stable place to make art is fleeting.
But Greenwich Peninsula is looking to help. With a commitment – and mantra – to “Keep London Creative”, the London neighbourhood is unveiling a series of workspaces ahead of the opening of its Design District in 2020. And Dazed gets to choose up to five creatives to work there, rent-free, for one whole year.
Creatives can now submit their application, explaining, in 1,000 characters, why they need the space and how it will impact their work, as well as sharing a two-year development plan for their trajectory. The competition will be open for one month, closing on February 7th. A panel of seven industry experts, led by Dazed founder Jefferson Hack, and including Dazed editors Thomas Gorton and Ashleigh Kane, as well as curator of NOW Gallery, Jemima Burrill, and CEO of Greenwich Peninsula, Richard Margree, will then decide on a maximum of five winners to move into the space this spring.
“Dazed has always celebrated and championed emerging creative talent so we are excited to partner on this campaign urging creatives in desperate need of a studio to apply for a free space,” says Hack. “In a time when many artists are being driven out of the city due to rising rents, it's more important than ever for artists to be given support so they can strengthen their work and build a business.”
“In a time when many artists are being driven out of the city due to rising rents, it’s more important than ever for artists to be given support so they can strengthen their work and build a business” – Jefferson Hack
After announcing the winners on Dazed’s website and social platforms, Dazed will then keep up with each creative’s progress over the year with a series of studio visits in order to share the work being made there.
In 2020, the Design District will open and provide a base for over 1,800 London creatives and offer affordable spaces.