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A close up of equipment at the Shed Distillery. A line of copper vessels with temperature gauges on the top, used to create gin.

Opportunity: Leitrim County Council’s Small Sparks

Posted: 13 June, 2024

Spark was developed by Leitrim County Council’s Arts Office and Local Enterprise Office for companies that are interested in collaborating with artists and promoting creativity within their organisation, and artists that are interested in exploring how their thinking, knowledge and practice can have relevance and impact in different environments.

As part of Small Sparks,  three Leitrim businesses are provided the opportunity to each work with an artist to explore common interests and how creative activity can benefit both the company and the artist. The residency lasts for approximately 10 days over three weeks, which can be taken in one block or spread over a longer period as agreed between the artist and company. What an artist will do will be influenced by the adopted environment, providing a greater interest and involvement in what the artist produces from staff and clients/customers, and serving as a catalyst for new thinking. Participating companies include The Shed Distillery, Leitrim Hill Creamery and Crusader Cabins

Applicants can be from any arts discipline. While some companies may appear suited to one or other artform, neither the arts office nor any of the companies have any preconceived ideas on what a project might look like or what approach any artist might propose, and as such are entirely open to all artists, disciplines and ideas.

Interested artists should first register their interest in the programme online available at leitrimarts.ie.  Artists who have declared an interest are invited to a site visit of the three companies and to meet with the arts office. While attendance at the site visit is not essential to make an application, it is strongly advised that applicants do so.

To declare your interest in SPARK, please register online before midnight on Sunday 30 June 2024

The site visit will be in person and start at the first of the three companies with an introduction to the programme, its background and what it hopes to achieve and will take place on Wednesday 10 July 2024. For more information and a full schedule on transport options, visit leitrimarts.ie.

Following the site visit, artists are invited to propose ideas and approaches for a three-week residency at any of the companies. Proposals should be submitted online only at this link before midnight on Sunday 4 August.

A panel consisting of representatives of the Arts Office and Local Enterprise Office along with external experts will shortlist applications. A maximum of three proposals will be presented to each company for consideration. One or more of those shortlisted will then be invited to meet with the company.

The artist fee is €2000 and Leitrim County Council will provide a materials budget of €500 as indicated above. This does not prohibit a company providing further funding towards the project or further funding being sought from other sources.

The Spark programme also consists of a longer 6-month programme which follows on from Small Sparks. Should a Small Sparks project give rise to work that would be suitable for the longer 6-month Programme, the Arts Office will look to progress that project with the artist and the company. Should more than one Small Sparks partnership wish to pursue a longer residency, each partnership will be asked to prepare a further proposal, one of which will be selected for the 6-month programme.

For further information call 071 96 21694 or email arts@leitrimcoco.ie or go to www.leitrimarts.ie

Spark is a project of Leitrim County Council’s Arts Office and Local Enterprise Office and is funded by Leitrim County Council and the Arts Council of Ireland. Image courtesy of the Shed Distillery.


Leitrim County Council
Small Sparks

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