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York College

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Higher Education Art and Design students at York College have been learning how the public art work for the new Vangarde Shopping Park at Monks Cross has been commissioned. Following a series of presentations, students gained an insight in to how artists work with developers, how cultural companies commission public artworks and how artists submit their work for tender.


An initial presentation by Moira Innes at the Culture Company and Sean Mannion, DLA Graphics, informed students about the public art strategy and commissioning process for the new Vangarde Shopping Park. A few weeks later the selected artists Tony and Aprille Broomhead visited the College to showcase the work they submitted to Oakgate (the Developer), DLA Architects, RBA (Quantity Surveyors) and the City of York Council.

This educational opportunity was facilitated through Higher York who work with NYBEP and the City Council to encourage the construction industry to get involved in schools, colleges, universities and communities whilst developing major construction sites in York. It is intended that York College art and design students will get a chance to visit the site and have further discussions with the artists. They will also be involved in developing content for the Vangarde Shopping Park website.

Ed Poxon, Deputy Head of Division for Fine Art Design and Craft at York College comments: “This kind of project provides invaluable industry experience and gives students an insight in to how artists work with developers and the cultural companies who commission public artworks. They gained an understanding of how proposals are generated and how artists tender for work in terms of making applications and giving presentations. It was particularly interesting for the students to see the presentations by the selected artists for the Vangarde project. Simply knowing how to go through these processes correctly is hugely valuable to creative artists.”

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