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Red Deer Arts Residency

This opportunity is for an artist to spend time in Coigach & Assynt to research and then realise artwork on the subject of Red Deer. The aim of this residency is to reflect and unpack the complex relationships between red deer, the land and people in Coigach & Assynt.


Assynt has both large and small estates supporting a significant population of red deer that are generally free to roam across the landscape. The Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape Partnership (CALLP) scheme has brought together a number of these community, charity and private landowners to jointly engage with its endeavour to address a wide range of environmental, conservation and restoration projects.


The Artist Residencies sit within 33 CALLP projects, funded by National Lottery Heritage Fund.  []

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The Artist Residencies projects of which, this Call Out is for the third of four, are distinctive for setting out a focus for creative exploration. Applications are welcome from practitioners who work in performance, audiovisual or written or fine art practices. There are no limits being placed on the form of the final artwork or the chosen artistic medium.


Previous CALLP Artist in Residence Projects includes Julia Cowie who focussed on Clachtoll Broch and Alex McKay who composed music responding to the path to Suilven.


The image of a red deer is one of the most used and arguably abused images associated with Scotland. CALLP and The Assynt Foundation are able to assist the selected artist to make contact with those involved in land management, deer management and stalking, conservation and wildlife organisations, as well as supporting other research that requires local knowledge.


A fee of £5,000 is available to cover the artist time, travel, accommodation and materials. Please outline a budget breakdown in your proposal. Please use Scottish Artists Union rates, which are based on the applicant’s experience, and consider the practical realities of costs of travel and accommodation, to a remote part of the North West of Scotland when creating your budget.


The Assynt Foundation’s Arts Studio is available to the resident as a Studio, and place to host events and workshops. It can also be organised as a live-work space if this is desired. Previous residents have either had their own camper van or have made use of local hostel facilities.

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The key outputs required are:

  • Creation of a piece of work of artistic merit and relevance on the subject of red deer.

  • It is hoped the artist will willingly provide a regular blog to be posted on local websites to aid communication and contact with the wider community and further afield.

  • Two open workshops (events) to explore with participants the process and reasoning behind the artwork to be produced, to be timetabled in discussion with the artist.

  • The artist will host two visits from local schools, to talk about the project and undertake a small practical activity with the young people.


Staff employed by CALLP will organise the logistics of these events, allowing the artist to engage fully with the public and young people attending the events.


  • The deadline for applications is 12.00 midday March 1 2021

  • Shortlisting will take place

  • The successful applicant will be notified by 19 March 2021

  • Preparatory site visit and meetings – possibly to be done remotely

  • The residency is scheduled for May-June 2021

  • Discussion with AF re plans for artwork and its future location and access by the public.

  • Events are anticipated to happen in June 2021 / towards the end of the residency.


All activity undertaken will follow the Scottish Government Covid-19 guidelines. Should Scottish Government guidelines preclude travel to the North West of Scotland, Assynt Foundation will work with the selected artist to research remotely and reschedule the residency.

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Application requirements:

  • Please supply a statement setting out initial ideas of how you will approach this residency; why you are interested in engaging with the subject of Red Deer; the activities you will undertake. Please also indicate your availability, and what time you propose to give to this project.   This should be no more than 750 words

  • Please provide a CV, highlighting past projects which are relevant

  • Please supply up to ten images and captions (on a single PDF) or weblinks to recent artworks which are relevant

  • Please supply details of your website if you have one


The deadline for applications is 12.00 midday 1st March 2021. Please send applications to If you have not received an acknowledgement within 48 hours, please re-send your application.

The Assynt Foundation (AF) is managing this project as a partner of CALLP.

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