Great news – I have been awarded a Sir Winston Churchill Memorial Trust travel Fellowship for 2010 and will be travelling to North Carolina and Virginia for 6 weeks. I will be researching the North Devon Pottery Trade (where did all those exported pots go?) and also making strong links with artists, arts organisations and artists’ networks. Exact dates of travel are to be confirmed but I will be in NC and VA from mid September to the end of October. I will be spending a lot of my time in Manteo and surrounding areas of the Outerbanks on this trip.
I have done lots of research on where to go and who to meet with, but I am sure there will be plenty more to add to my list. So far I am planning to visit Manteo based artists, galleries and arts organisations; Manteo First Friday Committee and the Artrageous Extravaganza Committee; Dare County Arts Council (see www.darearts.org); N C Arts Council; historic sites and museums in Raleigh; Historic Jamestowne and the Colonial National Historical Park (including its collection of Pottery); The Lost Colony Production; Roanoke Island Festival Park; Fort Raleigh National Historic Site; arts communities in the Outerbanks area, including Pocosin Arts in Columbia; Seagrove potteries and the Museum of Pottery.
I am in the process of writing an itinerary for the 6 weeks. I have already had conversations with Laura Martier, Executive Director of Dare County Arts Council and Sharon Enoch who is a potter and owns the Full Moon cafe and Gallery in Manteo (www.thefullmooncafe.com). They have both been extremely helpful and are bending over backwards to help me plan my trip and to make it a success – thank you to both of them. If you are reading this and are an individual artist or arts organisation in Manteo, the Outerbanks or North Carolina and think you can help please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
The travel fellowship is an award that is open to any UK citizen to apply for and the focus is very much on being able to bring information back to the local community and to disseminate it on my return.
I hope that this fellowship will be a catalyst – a starting point to enable the relationship between both Bideford and Manteo as new sister cities, and the wider relationship between North Devon, NC and VA, to flourish. It will be an opportunity for the local communities and arts communities to begin to get to know each other and for future joint projects and programmes to be devised and executed.
For Bideford Bay Creatives it will be an incredible opportunity to make strong links and for subsequent arts-based projects and events to happen.
With very grateful thanks to the Sir Winston Churchill Memorial Trust for awarding me this travel Fellowship. With opportunity comes responsibility!