|24 December 2015|

90 individual artists and organisations across Scotland have been awarded over £1.7 million of Creative Scotland Open Project Funding awards. Spanning the arts, screen and creative industries, the awards have been made during the period August and September 2015 and range from between £1,500 and £100,000.

A series of children’s books about the Kelpies and the translation of The Gruffalo into Scots dialects – Dundonian, Orcadian, Shetlandic and Doric – are amongst awards made towards literature and publishing.  Scotland’s only festival of silent cinema – Hippodrome– will devise a touring and outreach programme; Claire Cunningham, Janis Claxton, Errol White Company and Dance Ihayami have been supported to develop a variety of dance projects;  and Puppet State Theatre Company has received funding towards the staging and touring of a storytelling performance of JRR Tolkien’s short story, Leaf by Niggle, with new music composed by Karine Polwart.

Ilana Halperin: Geologic Intimacy (Yu no Hana) Curator, Naoko Mabon commented: “I’m thrilled to establish this new international project together with artist Ilana Halperin. Being a Kyushu-born Japanese living in Aberdeen, which enjoys a historical relationship with Kyushu, I’m looking forward to introducing Halperin’s works to both locations for the first time, the project also aims to open up a broader discussion into visual art and science and help to enhance the vibrant exchange between two far-apart locations.”

Alison Strauss, director of Hippodrome said: “The programme is under wraps just now but we are working with a wider range of musicians, new musical styles, and with more far flung archives than ever before to pack the five days of the Festival with exhilarating live cinema events.

“It’s a joy to animate this stunning venue with unique, world-class events, celebrating the heritage of the Hippodrome itself and bringing the red-carpet-glamour and excitement back to a trip to ‘the Pictures’.  But just as important to us is reaching out, beyond the walls of the cinema, to communities, youth groups and other venues so we’re devising a touring and outreach programme that will bring HippFest to audiences far and wide.  We can’t wait to reveal all the delights the programme has in store.”

On receiving funding Richard Medrington from Puppet State Theatre Company, said: “We are delighted that Creative Scotland are supporting our adaptation of JRR Tolkien’s Leaf by Niggle. With this rare opportunity to adapt one of Tolkien’s least-known stories for the stage, we are excited to be exploring new collaborations and reaching a slightly older audience, after the success of The Man Who Planted Trees, which has been touring for 10 years since its initial investment.”

Janet Archer, CEO, Creative Scotland, said: Janet Archer, CEO, Creative Scotland, said: “Open Project Funding supports people to develop and deliver arts and creative projects, widen access to their work, and enrich Scotland’s reputation as a distinctive creative nation.

“A year after opening, the Fund has made over 500 separate awards to artists, creative practitioners and organisations across Scotland, totalling nearly £10 million.

“When we launched Open Project Funding last year we reviewed the programme after its first 6 months. Having listened to feedback, a number of changes have been made and we have improved the guidance and application form to make it easier for applicants.

“We will make further improvements to the Open Project Funding funding route in the coming year. For example, things we are currently working on include making the application process even simpler for those applying for less than £5,000; continuing to strengthen the way we use expertise to make decisions, while keeping the process manageable; and working towards an online application process.”

Over £1.6 million of these awards have been allocated from National Lottery funds. Alongside funding from the Scottish Government, The National Lottery forms a vital part of funding support for the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland.