25 Oct -
26 Jan 2014

11:00 am - 4:00 pm

Main Space

STOP PRESS – Jim Howieson has been announced as winner of EMERGENCY6! Find our more on the blog.

Good choice? Or don’t agree? Vote in our People’s Choice award and the winner will receive £200! Find out how at the EMERGENCY6 blog.

This year’s People’s Choice award is kindly sponsored by Dack Residential Lettings.

Ten artists have now been selected for this stage of the EMERGENCY6 open submission competition, and from these a winner will be chosen to receive the prize of a solo exhibition at aspex in 2015, including a £1000 fee and up to £1000 production budget.

The selectors diligently studied submissions from almost 400 artists from all corners of the globe and eventually settled upon the following ten, whose work will be exhibited at aspex between 25 October 2013 and 19 January 2014.

The biennial open submission exhibition EMERGENCY is an essential part of the organisation’s programme, providing emerging artists with an opportunity to bring their work to wider attention. Previous winners have been Charlie Tweed 2012, Kihlberg & Henry 2010, Cathy Ward & Eric Wright 2008, Tim Machin 2006 and Susan Collis 2004.

This year’s selectors are: S. Mark Gubb, artist; Simon Morrissey, Director, WORKS | PROJECTS; Donna Lynas, Director, Wysing Arts Centre and Joanne Bushnell, Director, aspex.

have your say…

  • http://aldobranti.eu/ aldobranti

    emergency 6 submission : what image file size would you prefer, pixel resolution etc ? I could make them 300M each …

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      File size is up to you – MediaFire has plenty of space, and all regular file types are fine!

  • Guest

    Could you comment on why – as a publicly funded organisation – you require artists to pay to apply for this opportunity?

    • Gareth Colwell

      Hello Grace, thank you for your comment. It is important, especially given the current funding situation across the arts, that open submission competitions such as EMERGENCY are run on a sustainable basis. The fees we get are combined with some of the other funding we receive and then are invested into the competition, including the support we will give to those selected for exhibition and the eventual winner. We would love to do it for free, but sadly it would not be possible to produce a open submission on a scale such as EMERGENCY without an submission fee element.

      In general, it is common practice amongst organisations such as ours to have a submission fee for major open submissions that include a prize, and the £15 we charge for EMERGENCY is set below the level of some others. In addition, we also give artists an opportunity to exhibit without a fee with exhibitions such at the current “Freedom’s Road” and last year’s “Say What You See”. I hope that goes someway to answering your query – If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me on gareth@aspex.org.uk.

      • Guest

        Did you have to pay to apply for your job at aspex, Gareth? And is your salary and the career support that you receive in that job funded by the fees paid by unsuccessful applicants?

        Just a thought experiment for you.

        • Ian Chambers

          Grace – Here’s a Thought Experiment for you; Do you really think that the funds available to aspex are unlimited and that the board would be happy for aspex to be offering free submissions for competitions when most other organisations charge for them?

          • Guest

            32% of organisations charged for opens in 2012: http://new.a-n.co.uk/news/single/artists-funding-and-frictions/

            That’s some, not most. The idea that anyone would think any arts organisation has unlimited funds is ridiculous. Artists are poor, not naive.

            Aspex made the same choice as 32% of other organisations. 68% bore the cost of administrating opens themselves. The comment was about pointing out a choice.

            Your original comment, including “Don’t worry though, I’m sure they won’t lose any sleep if you don’t submit an entry” is a bit insulting.

          • Ian Chambers

            Ok fair point but how much do you know about the financial situation that aspex are in? That 68% could and probably do have far more funds available.

            That would be why I removed the comment, but it does point out that you also have a choice; at whether you submit an entry or not. No one is forcing you to.

          • Guest

            The issue is that when arts organisations are squeezed, they squeeze the people below: the result is that emerging artists, who have the least economic means and power, are increasingly asked to subsidise programmes which may not even include them. And that’s pretty depressing.

            Of course they can choose not to apply – I’m sure lots make that choice, either on principle or because they just don’t have the money to continually pay for possible/potential opportunities. The question is whether arts organisations support artists’ aspirations – or exploit them.

          • Jonathan Parsons

            Hi Grace,

            You seem to be unaware that Aspex has directly supported artists’ aspirations free of charge for the past 11 years through programmes run by artists for artists. We have provided free direct contact with gallery directors, curators and many other arts professionals, one to one advice, events, national and international travel and exhibitions to over 2300 artists who have participated in the Artists Resource Centre and Aspex Artists programmes. All of this has been provided free of charge. We have had a policy during that time of employing artists to contribute to the sessions and paying them a daily rate that is comparable to sessional lecturing at Higher Education Institutions. Wherever possible, we have consulted artists in shaping our programmes and have commissioned evaluation from them. I wonder how many of the 68% of the organisations cited have provided a dedicated, free of charge artist support service over the last decade? As an organisational team, I can assure you that we at Aspex have a comprehensive understanding of the issues faced by emerging artists and of the vary precarious financial position that they can sometimes be in. We have worked very hard to address this over the years, but it is certain that cuts to public funding of the arts has had a major negative effect across all sectors, from commission opportunities to teaching. Aspex has continued to provide artist support services with very little money. In response to your original post I would add that the Emergency6 opportunity is not equivalent to a job application. These often require 2-3 days’ unpaid work to prepare for. The entrance fee for Emergency6 is supplemented by our public funding, not the other way round as you suggest. In a purely cost per number of applicants ratio (and therefore in terms of the chances of being selected) Emergency6 compares very favourably with other open submissions. Aspex cannot be accused of exploiting artists.

            I hope this goes some way to addressing your concerns.

            Best wishes,

            Jonathan Parsons, Aspex Artist Advisor

          • Guest

            Thanks for adding all this information Jonathan; your programme sounds extensive and beneficial. If anything it seems out of character for you to charge for an open. The economic issues and debate around opens amongst artists isn’t limited to any one organisation; it wasn’t my intention to suggest that these questions are more pertinent to your organisation than to any other.

            Artists often do spend days preparing and submitting an application. Of course the requirements vary so some are quicker, but in general it’s not dissimilar to the time and trouble someone would take over an application for a job or any significant opportunity. Likely ratios or numbers of other applicants for an open are never known to artists in advance, so it would be very difficult to know whether Emergency6 compares favorably to other opportunities.

            I appreciate you taking the time to put your position in context and for being willing to host a discussion of these issues on your website.

          • Amalia Jacobs

            Hello Grace, when deciding weather or not to apply for open submissions, as an artist I think it is imperative to really spend time considering weather a particular opportunity could be beneficial to me. (For instance, if the gallery/organization supports artists at my current working level and has aims compatible to my own practice, if the selectors are likely to be interested in my work or not, and if they will actually see all works submitted). These are factors I weigh up for each open submission I come across to determine weather the price and time it takes to send an application might be worth it to me. It is silly to think an artist might blindly apply to numerous open submissions on a regular basis, it would be a waste of time and money to do so. Considering the reputation of Aspex as a very artist friendly gallery/space by continuously supporting emerging artists in various ways, with selectors of reputable standing (often who are fellow artists themselves, as well as curators) I don’t feel that £10 – £15 for a submission to EMERGENCY to be a problem, even though I do not have much money myself. On principle however, I do have a problem with the BP sponsored Portrait Award charging a registration fee for submissions (as an example). It is true that artists have a choice about applying to open submissions. Different open submissions serve different kinds of purposes and if they really don’t fit with YOUR criteria than don’t waste your time or money applying. Saying all of that, I also wonder if the submission fee might at times help to pay the selectors for time taken out of THEIR very busy schedules, often traveling from other cities, to view hundreds of artworks. I also feel that it is unprofessional and inappropriate to condescendingly ask someone at a gallery if they had to pay to submit their job application. Thank you.

  • Dong Zhenjie

    If the artworks are selected. Do the artist need to send the framed works to you? And if it is from country outside of UK, does the artist need to pay for the shipment or will ASPEX cover some of it? Thanks.

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      Hello Dong – I’d advise emailing emergency6@aspex.org.uk for more information on this and someone will get back to you. Thanks!

  • Aylwin Greenwood-Lambert

    Hi, what would the delivery dates for selected works be? Ta.

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      Hello Aylwin – best to drop an email to clive@aspex.org.uk exact dates!

  • ilona istvan

    I just like to know when I am filling your application form why needs for you my bank card’s all details. I really don’t understand, If I have payd the subbmission fee online, there is on your account.
    So why do you want to know my card’s details and keep it? It can be dangerous to give out your full details including the security number. Because anybody who knows these can use my card for online buy.
    So I am confused with the application. Could you give me some information about this?
    an artist

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      It was an option to either pay by Eventbrite OR add your details to the form where it would be uploaded to our secure Mediafire server. If you had any problems uploading contact me directly at gareth@aspex.org.uk

  • Ben

    hi there. could you tell me the time of the deadline for online submissions please? Is it 5pm or midnight? Thanks

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      Sorry Ben, it was added above and I hope you saw it – if not contact me on gareth@aspex.org.uk and you can submit directly.

  • april

    hi i uploading using the mediafire upload how do i know if you have received it?

  • Mzamo Nxumalo

    Are artists from South Africa allowed to enter

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      EMERGENCY6 is an international competition, however submissions are now closed so you are unable to enter, sorry Mzamo!

  • Dazzler Rahul Sureka

    hey i am from india…
    i want to take part in this competition
    i am a passionate artist can you pls tell me the procedure to enroll in it….pls mail me to rahulsureka5@gmail.com

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      Unfortunately submissions have now closed to EMERGENCY6, apologies!

  • Ilse Black

    Hi Aspex
    Do you have a ball park idea of when artists will be informed whether they have been selected for Emergency 6 or not? Will all participants be emailed regardless of outcome?

    • http://www.aspex.org.uk/ Aspex

      Hello Ilse – if you drop clive@aspex.org.uk an email he’ll let you know more, and we’ll get some more info up here in the next week or so too! :-)

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