Tagged: Art Fund

Weston Loan Programme with Art Fund – deadline for applications 7th May 2020

The Weston Loan Programme with Art Fund has reopened for applications. The Fund is designed to provide regional museums and museum visitors with increased access to significant works held in collections across the country. The programme is generously supported by the Garfield Weston Foundation and will support cultural settings to secure strategic loans and maximise loan opportunities in the context of their own collections and communities. Art Fund recognises the great value of our national collections being shared more widely across the UK, and hope that museum staff, collections and audiences nationwide will benefit.

In this second phase of funding Art Fund has widened the pool of eligible lenders (to include non-nationals that lend under certain conditions) and will be holding two application rounds per year. Further details can be found in the Guidance for applicants.

Art Fund has opened the application process and welcomes proposals from non-national public museums, galleries, historic houses and other institutions with permanent collections. The application process is online, and the closing date for applications is midnight on 7 May 2020. If you’re not ready to apply in this round, there will be another round this year, and two per year in 2021 and 2022.

Full details of the programme, and advice on developing and delivering a loan project, can be found via Art Fund’s website

If you have any queries or would like to discuss a potential application, please contact Penny Bull, Senior Programmes Manager
020 7225 4840




New Professional Development Opportunities from Art Fund

From Art Fund:

Art Fund and AAMC Foundation International Engagement Programme

We have partnered with the Association of Art Museum Curators for a second year to offer UK-based art curators the opportunity to develop their learning and raise the profile of their collections on an international stage by participating in the AAMC Art Curators Conference in Seattle. This fully-funded programme will support 5 curators to attend the conference, pairing them with a US curator for peer-on-peer guidance and exchange and offering a one-year membership to both Art Fund and AAMC.

Curators with limited access to travel and professional development funding, and those without existing strong ties to US partners, are particularly encouraged to apply.

Applications close on Tuesday 11 February; more information can be found here.

New Collecting Awards

We are now accepting applications for the sixth round of the New Collecting Awards, which offers 100% funding for curators to build or expand collections of fine art, design or visual culture. The programme aims to support curators in developing skills associated with researching and identifying acquisitions, and offers a generous funding allocation towards research, travel and training costs and the support of a mentor.

There is £300,000 available in round 6, and with support from the Ruddock Foundation of the Arts, one award will be ringfenced for a curator planning to collect pre-1600 works as part of their project.

Applications close on Tuesday 28 April, and more information, including guidance for applicants, can be found here.

Jonathan Ruffer curatorial grants

This programme provides funding for travel and other practical costs to help museum professionals with collection and exhibition research projects and professional development. In 2019 we supported 74 curators with grants totalling over £78,000. The first 2020 deadline for grant requests above £2,000 falls on Wednesday 19 February. More information, including guidance for applicants, can be found here.

Headley Fellowships with Art Fund

Finally, later this year we will be opening the third and final round of Headley Fellowships with Art Fund, which give curators the time and resources to undertake research into their collections. We encourage applications from curators working with any kind of museum collection, from fine art and social history to archaeology and natural sciences.

We will open for applications in June, but welcome conversations in the meantime with anyone who might be interested in applying. More information can be found here.

Navigating the Art Market course

Details about a new professional development opportunity delivered by the Art Fund in partnership with Sotheby’s Institute of Art.navigating-the-art-market.jpg

Art Fund is pleased to be offering again this year free places on Navigating the Art Market, a course which will provide museum professionals with a practical understanding of the art market through a combination of online sessions and a one-day seminar in London.

When: Online sessions 7-28 October. Seminar day Friday 1 November 2019
Where: Sotheby’s Institute of Art, 30 Bedford Square, London WC1B 3EE
Who: Early career curators interested in gaining a practical understanding of the art market and more experienced curators wishing to refresh their knowledge
Cost: Free to attend (includes lunch)

The course will cover:

  • An overview and introduction to the art market
  • Guidance on how to buy at auction
  • Tools and resources for how to understand and analyse the art market
  • Provenance and due diligence research
  • The process of authentication and condition reporting
  • Title claim checks and registration

More details and information on how to apply can be found here. The deadline for applications is Wednesday 18 September.


New funding schemes from Art Fund open today

Conservation grants

Art Fund is always looking for new ways to support museums, and last year we began making grants to cover conservation – including work that allowed Artemisia Gentileschi’s Self Portrait as Saint Catherine of Alexandria to recently tour the UK in her full glory before settling in at the National Gallery. Now we are pleased to open a dedicated scheme of conservation grants to help safeguard the future of more artworks in collections across the country.

Find out more and apply now

Small project grants

We want to help museums, galleries and other visual arts organisations realise adventurous projects across a range of activities to benefit their audiences. Today we launch our small project grants, which provide funds for museums to trial new ideas and take more creative risks, with grants of up to £10,000 available to back projects of all kinds.

Find out more and apply now

Headley Fellowships with Art Fund

Now in their second year, the Headley Fellowships with Art Fund free up time for curators to carry out research into their collections by providing funding for their posts to be backfilled. The scheme is part of our ongoing initiative to encourage the development of UK collections expertise and the sharing of specialist knowledge both with the public and across the sector.

Find out more and apply now

Art Fund Museum of the Year 2019

From Art Fund:

Has your museum got what it takes to win Art Fund Museum of the Year 2019? Here’s how to apply:

Please read the information pack carefully before you apply. The deadline for applications is 12noon on Tuesday 6 February 2019. Late applications cannot be considered.

The best way to begin the process is to have a conversation with Art Fund, so do get in touch with Emma Coleman at ecoleman@artfund.org or on 020 7225 4822.

To apply, log in to your account to access the application form or create your My Art Fund account.

What the judges are looking for

To be considered for Art Fund Museum of the Year 2019, please show us how your achievements over the preceding year stand out, what makes your work inventive and the impact it has on your audiences.

These achievements might include:

  • bold and imaginative exhibitions, collection displays or conservation projects
  • learning programmes which help to develop skills, knowledge and enjoyment in new ways
  • acquisitions which have had a real impact on the museum and its audiences
  • creative use of technology or digital media
  • diversity or access initiatives which greatly broaden audience engagement and participation
  • programmes of modernisation, reorganisation or reinterpretation
  • new buildings, refurbishments or reinventions of existing spaces


Art Fund Museum of the Year is open to all museums, galleries and historic sites in the UK.

Applicants are usually either fully or provisionally accredited under the Arts Council England Accreditation Scheme, but exceptions are readily considered where organisations are in the public sector, have charitable status or conduct activities that are based on the care, display or interpretation of collections of artistic, historical or scientific interest.

Organisations should also be open regularly to the public.

Only one entry may be made per individual museum or gallery, though where an organisation operates several venues an entry may be submitted for each. Institutions can enter in consecutive years.

We are keen to encourage as many strong entries as possible. If you are unsure whether your organisation is eligible, please contact prize project manager Emma Coleman on 020 7225 4822 or ecoleman@artfund.org.

Headley Fellowships with Art Fund

From the Art Fund:

The programme is open to mid-career and senior curators, and those with curatorial responsibility, and practically will give curators time away from their day-to-day responsibilities to embark on a bespoke period of research and development. Headley Fellowships with Art Fund aim to encourage the production of ambitious and high-quality museum projects which have collections at their core, while investing in museums across the UK and their curators, helping them to realise exceptional ideas for communicating with a spectrum of audiences.

Full details on the aims and scope of the scheme can be found here.  Applications are open now with a deadline of Monday 15th October.

Curatorial Development Opportunity from Art Fund

From the Art Fund:

We’re pleased to be partnering once again with Whitechapel Gallery to offer a series of professional development courses for curators and museum professionals this summer.

This series is targeted at both early-career and more experienced curators, whether new to the topic or wishing to refresh and expand their existing knowledge. These hands-on courses will draw on the expertise of staff from across Whitechapel Gallery, as well as other industry leaders. Each course will focus on practical training and use current projects as case studies, allowing attendees to gain valuable guidance and insight from behind the scenes. 

Taking place in June and July, the courses will cover the following topics:

  • How to publish exhibition catalogues
  • Writing for the exhibition
  • How to fundraise – developing and managing fundraising events
  • How to curate a schools and community programme
  • Art writing for artists and critics
  • Curating events and public programmes
  • How to curate a youth programme
  • How to curate an exhibition with emerging artists
  • How to create a communications campaign
  • How to curate an exhibition – curating collection and archive displays.

Places normally cost £195, but curators and museum professionals are invited to apply for one of 50 funded places offered by the Art Fund. More details and information on how to apply can be found on our website. The deadline for applications is Friday 25th May.

Why Collect? A report on museum collecting today by historian Sir David Cannadine

The publication was commissioned by Art Fund and the Wolfson Foundation to mark 40 years of collaboration in helping to bring a wide range of art and other objects into public museum collections.

The report was undertaken to investigate how, why, and on what scale, publicly funded museums and galleries continue to expand their collections. Above all, it calls for further investment in museums to help them fulfil their core purposes: to develop, care for, and share these collections with a broad public. The accompanying case studies explore the impact of specific acquisitions on a number of museums and their audiences.

Download the full report here.

Art Fund New Collecting Awards Now Open

This funding programme enables promising and ambitious curators to build critical professional skills by pursuing new avenues of collecting for their museums.

Applications for the fourth round of the scheme are now open.

The deadline to submit an expression of interest is 13 February 2018. Shortlisted applicants will then be invited to present to the New Collecting Awards panel in late April 2018.


Through the New Collecting Awards programme we aim to support the next generation of curatorial leaders across the UK. The awards promote the value of research-led collecting and foster curatorial expertise at both individual and institutional levels, enriching museum practice long-term.

Offering 100% funding for focused collecting projects of the highest quality, the scheme enables curators to expand museum collections of fine art, design or visual culture into exciting new areas, or to deepen existing holdings in imaginative ways.

Each awardee also receives a generous funding allocation towards research, travel and training costs to facilitate their proposed collecting plans and professional development. Additionally, they are offered the ongoing support of a mentor, Art Fund staff and our trustees.

Who can apply?

We welcome applications from curators who are either in the early stages of their career or have had limited opportunities to collect.

We expect applicants to be in full- or part-time employment at a fully or provisionally accredited museum or gallery. We will also consider applications from freelance curators or researchers, provided they can demonstrate that they will be officially affiliated with an accredited museum or gallery for the duration of the project and that their participation will have a longer-term institutional impact.

Applicants will be expected to demonstrate why receiving a New Collecting Award would benefit not only their museum and its collections but also, crucially, their own professional development in a way that would not otherwise be possible.

How much can you apply for?

Typical grant awards fall between £50,000 and £80,000. Curators can apply for any amount but will be expected to demonstrate that the sum is reasonable and proportionate in relation to the types and number of works they propose to collect.

With generous support from the KMF Maxwell Stuart Charitable Trust, one award will be ringfenced for a curator working with a collection in a museum or gallery in Scotland.

The allocation for professional development is ringfenced at 10% of the total sum awarded.

Please note that we retain the right to award a reduced grant for either planned acquisitions or professional development at our own discretion.

Find out how to apply and read about the previous winners.

The New Collecting Awards are made possible by a number of generous individuals and trusts including the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, the Wolfson Foundation, the Ruddock Foundation of the Arts, the Headley Trust and the Vivmar Foundation.

Navigating the Art Market

Free Training Course
Friday 23rd February 2018
Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London

Art Fund are running this course in conjunction with Sotheby’s Institute of Art.    It is aimed at museum professionals to provide a practical understanding of the art market.  Topics will range from how to bid at auction and the legal aspects of acquiring art to tips for cultivating relationships with art dealers and collectors.

The course will use a combination of online training and a day seminar at Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London on 23 February 2018.  The seminar in London will offer an opportunity to review online material, network with curators and art world experts as well as offering insight into the workings of the auction house Sotheby’s.

The course is targeted at early career curators interested in gaining a practical understanding of the art market and more experienced curators wishing to refresh their knowledge.   Applications are open to all museum and gallery professionals, but given the limited spaces available, priority will be given to curators and others who work with public collections. 

Courses offered by the Sotheby’s Institute normally charge a fee, however this course, specifically aimed at museum professionals will be free to attend (with lunch included) for those who are offered a place.   

For more details and to apply click here.

Application deadline: 12 noon on Wednesday 10 January 2018.