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Arts Council opens new £80,000 Individual Artists Digital Evolution Awards scheme

Tuesday 10th August 2021 at 3pm 0 Comments

The Arts Council of Northern Ireland, in collaboration with Future Screens NI, today (Tuesday 10th August) opened a new funding programme which aims to provide individual artists from Northern Ireland with skills in the use of digital technology to support sustainability in the context of Covid-19.

Individual artists across all disciplines will receive a stimulus and technical guidance with the aim of producing high-quality Digital Art*. The Individual Artists Digital Evolution Awards, worth £80,000, from The National Lottery and Future Screens NI, offers individuals the opportunity to apply for grants of up to £10,000 and is open to artists across all art forms.

To support prospective applicants to the programme, the Arts Council together with Future Screens NI, will host an online webinar on Wednesday 18th August at 10am to enable applicants to explore their ideas with industry experts. Registration in advance is essential and you can find details of how to attend on the Individual Artists Digital Evolution Awards funding page on the Arts Council website.

The Individual Artists Digital Evolution Awards aims to support those artists who are making digital art for the first time or are working with digital or immersive technology which they have not used previously. Collaborative applications from individual artists working together in cross-discipline projects and activities are also encouraged. Examples of the types of project that this scheme will support includes:

  • Creation of a virtual environment or augmented reality environment; such as augmented reality visual arts or sound overlay on venues or geographical spaces
  • Using technology, such as 3D rendering and printing, to create artwork digitally which can either exist digitally or be manufactured into 3D physical objects
  • Using technology to translate data into artistic content; for example algorithms that create music or visual content from data input
  • App development for the delivery of artistic content; this could include gamification or making an artistic experience for consumption on digital devises. (note: this does not include streaming of filmed/recorded performances)

Roisin McDonough, Chief Executive, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, commented,

“The opening of the Individual Artists Digital Evolution Awards today is welcome news and we are delighted to partner with Future Screens NI on this exciting programme. The programme will support artists in the creation of art using digital and immersive technologies, and will also help artists develop skills in the use of these new technologies. This programme reflects the Arts Council’s commitment to encouraging innovative practices that cross artform boundaries and build digital capabilities within the Northern Ireland arts sector.”

Professor Paul Moore, Director Future Screens NI, said,

“As we continue to experience transitions associated with Covid-19 it is essential that we support artists to develop the skills required to benefit fully from new, emerging and immersive technologies. Future Screens NI is privileged to partner with Arts Council NI to deliver the Individual Artists Digital Evolution Awards which will enhance the ability of artists to develop ambitious creative projects employing new technologies and to develop specialist skills required to sustain the future of the creative industries”

The Individual Artists Digital Evolution Awards scheme is open for online applications from Tuesday 10th August and will close at 12noon on Tuesday 31st August for grants up to a maximum of £10,000. For information on the webinar, eligibility, guidance notes and to apply visit Please note guidance notes are also available on request in large print format and disk.

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