Modern Heritage Craft: Call out for Artists


The Modern Heritage Craft Project



After a successful pilot, the Modern Heritage Craft project is back for its second year. Last year, Ian Cameron Smith and Godfrey Smith worked with nine young people to create a range of contemporary functional objects.


Applications are now open for craft makers in Dumfries & Galloway to run workshops for a new group of 15-25 year olds.


We know that the best way to become a skilled maker is to learn from one so we’re offering up to 12 young people the opportunity to work with one of our experienced crafts people in the region.


Heritage craft, traditional craft, contemporary craft are hard terms to define but the economic impact of the sector is clear (see the report from Creative and Cultures Skills about the impact on England).


‘Heritage Craft includes practices which employ manual dexterity and skill and an understanding of traditional materials, designs and techniques in order to make, repair, restore or conserve buildings, other structures, modes of transport, or more general, portable objects.

Creative Cultural Skills


What does the project involve?

The Modern Heritage Craft Project is geared towards 15-25 year olds with an interest in learning craft skills, working in craft, or in setting up a micro business in Dumfries and Galloway.


The work will be carried out over 10 days and will result in the production of an exhibition quality functional or sculptural work, which will be shown as part of Spring Fling 2015. These 10 days can be split into two equal or unequal blocks, depending on the participants and the maker. The dates will be coordinated to fit with your schedule and that of the young people.


We are looking for two professional craft makers who will teach new skills to between three and six young people. The workshops should happen in your own workshop/studio or a suitable alternative in Dumfries and Galloway.


A film and book will be produced to celebrate both years of the project and participants will have professional product shots taken of their final work.

A taster for the film can be found here:

Product shots from the 2014 project can be found here:



14 Nov                    Deadline for makers

w/c 17 Nov             Selection of makers

24 Nov                    Call-out for young people

w/c 19 Jan              Selection of young people

Jan-Feb                  Confirmation of workshops

Feb – mid-April        Workshops delivered

16 May – 13 June      Exhibition at Designs Gallery, Castle Douglas

tbc                         Opening event

tbc                         Closing event


Budget and Fee

Each professional craft maker will be paid £2500 (£250 per day x 10 days)


In addition there is a budget of £1200 for each workshop to cover materials and expenses for the whole group of young people.


To Apply

Send a short statement to on why you would like to be involved and what particular relevant experience or knowledge you can offer. Please send this with your CV and three images of your recent work. Please also include any links to your website, blog, films or photographs of you working by Friday 14 November.


Please call Leah on 01387 213 218 if you have any questions.



There are four elements that led to this project being established in 2014:


1. The Heritage Craft Association


‘For most of our history, making things by hand was the norm, and the skills were passed from one generation to the next. In this digital age, when so many spend their days in front of a computer screen, the thrill and sense of satisfaction in taking time to make something yourself is that much more important. Yet there are crafts that form part of our cultural heritage which are in real danger of dying out … the heritage craft sector has a total turnover of £10.8 billion in the UK, employs almost 210,000 people, yet is at risk of disappearing due to an ageing skilled workforce and lack of training opportunities for young people. If these thousands of successful micro businesses could be empowered to pass on their skills and mentor the next generation we could see real growth.’


2. Made Not Manufactured – a beautiful photography project by Steve Kenward:


3. Dumfries and Galloway’s has a rich cultural heritage, and is home to a wide variety of craft makers using traditional techniques, materials, or methods creating both functional and sculptural work with modern relevance.


4. With some question marks over whether university/art school straight from school is the best option for all young people, coupled with an ambition develop this into a larger craft apprenticeship programme in the future in Dumfries and Galloway (possibly with other partners) we think if we can test this model out it may grow into something beneficial to young people, micro businesses, the wider cultural sector, and the local economy.

2018 Brochure