for artists with an emerging interest in socially engaged practice

Artist Development Bursaries 2019

As part of our 2019 programme, Compass is delighted to offer four artist development bursaries aimed at artists with an emerging interest in socially engaged and/or participatory arts practice.

As a leading regional commissioner and programmer of socially engaged live art projects this scheme will extend our festival focus and invest in retaining local talent. Please see examples of our past projects here.

The aim of these bursaries is to support and bolster artists who live and work in West Yorkshire who may have a developing interest in participatory/socially engaged arts practice but have less experience than they would like.

Each bursary is made up of the following support:

  • £500 to research a new idea or project
  • Three consultancy meetings with the team at Compass towards developing that idea
  • Two consultancy sessions with one of the artists taking part in Compass’ 2019 artist residency programme May-October 2019.
  • Shadowing/Observation time with that artist during their residency with Compass in Leeds.
  • The invitation to propose a project for Compass Festival 2020.

‘Emerging interest’ might mean a recent graduate hoping to specialise in socially engaged and participatory practice, or a more experienced artist with an established practice in another area who now wishes to make work in a participatory/socially engaged setting.

Applicants must be based on West Yorkshire and be able to demonstrate a desire and commitment to living and working in the West Yorkshire region for the foreseeable future.

To apply, please send a covering email to with the subject line ARTIST DEVELOPMENT BURSARIES 2019.

Attach a supporting document that includes:

  1. 350 – 500 words about yourself and why you think the AD bursaries are right for you at this point in time.
  2. 350 – 500 words about how you would use the bursary to develop a new idea, and why this idea is important to you
  3. A link to images/video of your past work
  4. A link to your website/social media

If you prefer, please send us links to a video (up to 4 minutes) covering points the first two points, instead of a written submission.

Compass actively welcomes applications from BAME artists and those with disabilities.

Ambassadors for Ecologies of Care

As an organisation we are proud to support and be an ambassador for Ecologies of Care; an initiative designed to raise awareness and increase best practice for the health and wellbeing of artists and arts workers across the sector initiated by artist Ria Hartley. Read more about Ecologies of Care here.

The deadline for the Artist Development Bursaries is midnight on 9th May 2019.

You will hear back from us on 13th May 2019. If shortlisted, we will want to meet you in Leeds City Centre on 20th May 2019.