Programme

Frequently asked questions

Bishopsland has well equipped facilities with space for up to 16 people; the workshops are at the heart of our residential programme. They include a Silversmithing Workshop, and a dedicated Contemporary Jewellery Studio just a stone’s throw across the Craft Yard. Each year, the work made here onsite is shown in our exhibitions, where visitors and collectors can see new work by our current resident makers alongside work by our more established Fellows, and other artists and designers who work in precious metal.

In recent years, we have exhibited at the V&A Museum, British Museum, Dovecot Gallery in Edinburgh, Saatchi Gallery, Somerset House, and the National Centre for Applied Arts Wales, as well as Art in Action, and at Bishopsland. We have staged successful exhibitions and events in the fine period interiors of prestige heritage venues, such as the Savile in Mayfair, and The Drapers’ Hall in the City of London. These exhibitions generate wide interest and encourage sales of new work.

If you’d like to visit and see the work, and meet us, please go to events, or to get Bishopsland updates send us your contacts by registering on our home page.

Funding

The cost of a one year residential stay at Bishopsland should not be prohibitive to any talented emerging silversmith or jeweller. There are bursaries available to help support members of the course and additional support from other funds.

Applications for September 2021 are now closed. We will open for applications again in January 2022. If you would like to apply, please send your C.V and covering letter to admissions@bishopsland.org.uk

Overseas applications

A six month programme is available for overseas students.

Your residence at Bishopsland is overseen by the Principal, Penelope (Pope) Makower MCSD, working closely with visiting experts; Angela Cork MA (RCA), Chris Green MA, Rachel Jones (RCA), Nan Nan Liu MA (RCA) and Peter Musson (RCA), all independent silversmiths and jewellers in their own right.

Their expert, supportive one-to-one tuition and advice is supplemented by Masterclasses in specialist areas. These vary from year to year, but to-date have included raising, engraving, chasing, enamelling and gold fusion. Masters who have led Masterclasses for Bishopsland include internationally known artists such as engraver Malcolm Appleby MA (RCA), silversmith and chaser Rod Kelly MA (RCA), Jane Short MA (RCA), Sheila McDonald, jewellery artist Zoe Arnold (BA) and silversmith Rauni Higson (BA).

University education usually emphasises design, and often does not offer professional experience. Our integrated approach features tailored individual, one-to-one support, with a mix of quality exhibitions and more informal selling opportunities to show new work and there is a strong emphasis on business skills. This is what makes Bishopsland unique.

This has been a proven success over the past 26 years. Of the 205 who have passed through our doors, over two-thirds are still making their own work or in the industry and over 40 have gone back to studying at a higher level including at the Royal College of Art. Many Bishopsland Fellows (alumni) have gone on to gain important awards and commissions.

The majority have established their own business, either designing and making in their own workshop, managing their own gallery, or designing for the retail sector.

We provide a new 6-month programme starting annually in October or March. Both the overseas and the EU/UK programmes will work in parallel, with both taking part in the full range of development activities such as exhibitions, tutoring and master classes.

To discuss, or for more details please get in touch by e-mailing admissions@bishopsland.org.uk

During your time at Bishopsland you will be supported in your developing career through practical, development opportunities designed to provide our resident makers with specialist design and technical skills of the highest standard.

Short, intensive master classes are offered in specialist areas. These vary from year to year, but have included raising, chasing, engraving, enamelling, gold fusion and more; see ‘Community’ for details of master craftspeople who have led our master classes to date.

Alongside your technical development, networking, gallery introductions, together with professional exhibition opportunities are very important, as is a grounding in what is entailed in running your own business: costing and pricing, display and presentation, book-keeping and marketing.

Bishopsland Timetable Jan-April 2020

While you are here you will have a range of opportunities to learn more about how to effectively run your own businesses (marketing, pricing, finance, working with clients) and gain hands-on experience of designing and making new work.

The programme is punctuated with a series of public exhibitions, linked to our Masterclasses. Masterclasses vary from year to year, but they introduce and drive up specialist skills; exhibitions are where the resulting work is showcased and made available to a wide range of visitors and collectors.

We have worked with some of the UK’s top curators of contemporary craft, to stage exhibitions of Fellows’ work with the British Museum, Crafts Council at Saatchi Gallery, Dovecot Studios in Edinburgh, National Museum Wales, Somerset House and the V&A Museum.

We also take part in more commercial events, such as Art in Action, Craft in Focus, Henley Festival and Presteigne Festival.

We know how important it is for makers to present their work to the highest possible standard. During your residency at Bishopsland, you will receive tuition in photography, which will help you to create a coherent brand and professional identity. This will ensure you have a set of quality images ready for professional use. You will leave Bishopsland with an understanding of how to present your work to the highest standard.

You will be given business advice, combined with ongoing insights from our self-employed silversmith tutors. This advice will improve your understanding of how to manage your business as a self-employed designer maker.

In addition, you will have the opportunity to attend specialist training at the Goldsmiths Centre.

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