Engage Scotland

Engage Scotland represents the Scottish body of Engage members, responding to training and networking needs within gallery education with a Scottish focus.

Not going back to normal: Manifesto launch from Collective

New disabled artists manifesto to be launched

A new manifesto calling for radical change in the arts will be launched on Thursday 8 October 2020. Not going back to normal has been created following an open call out to disabled artists. Published as a website and a book, the project combines visual art, poetry, manifestos and more, and includes contributions from 47 contemporary disabled artists living in Scotland.

During the COVID-19 lockdown, the world suddenly became interested in isolation, exclusion, and distance communication – issues which disabled people have experienced long before the pandemic. As the country locked down, disabled artists in Scotland were asked to re-imagine what ‘normal’ might look like in a radically accessible arts world.

Artists Harry Josephine Giles and Sasha Saben Callaghan have brought together contributions of art and ideas which show what the arts in Scotland could and should be like for disabled artists in the post-pandemic era.

Not going back to normal will be launched initially as a digital platform at a special online event on Thursday 8 October 2020: https://www.notgoingbacktonormal.com/

A live online event to mark the launch, featuring Harry Josephine Giles, Sasha Saben Callaghan, and artists who have contributed to the manifesto, will be hosted by Collective at 6pm on Thursday 8 October 2020. Tickets are free, but advance booking is essential. They can be booked through the Collective website: https://www.collective-edinburgh.art/programme/collective-observations-harry-josephine-giles-sasha-saben-callaghan

A print version of Not going back to normal will be produced later this year.

About Not going back to normal

Not going back to normal was commissioned by a consortium of visual art organisations working together to address barriers faced by disabled artists in Scotland, made up of; Arika, Artlink, CCA, Collective (project producers), DCA, Glasgow School of Art Exhibitions, Project Ability, Scottish Sculpture Workshop.

The project is funded by Creative Scotland and Engage Scotland, and is independently managed and curated.

COVID-19 Update 

In response to the latest government guidance relating to COVID-19 (or Coronavirus), and in order to prioritise the health and wellbeing of our members, audiences and staff, Engage has made the following changes to our operations.   

The Engage Scotland Coordinator continues to work from home and the Engage Head Office team are now working remotely. Engage will continue to advocate for the gallery and visual arts education sector across the UK and internationally. 

Read more about Engage’s COVID-19 response here. 

We have rescheduled or paused our Scotland programme of activities for 2020 until we have had more time to understand what the best way of supporting the gallery education sector in Scotland will be. We will work with members, colleagues at Engage and other sector support organisations to develop our response over the next few weeks and months.  

COVID-19 support resources

Please get in touch if you have any suggestions for us at this time by emailing scotland@engage.org  

Engage Scotland, SCAN and the Scottish Artists Union launch Visual Arts Manifesto

Front page of the Visual Art Manifest

Engage Scotland has joined forces with the Scottish Contemporary Art Network and the Scottish Artists Union to create a 19 point manifesto focusing on workers’ rights and diversity in the visual arts. 

The Visual Arts Manifesto has been launched as a direct response to the current challenges facing the art sector as a whole and is our first public response to the new National Culture Strategy consultation process. 

The Manifesto sets out our policy demands but also our collective commitment to positive change. This vision and set of ambitions for the sector will help ensure that we maintain Scotland’s global reputation as a dynamic, innovative place for contemporary visual arts.