News / 29 Jan 2024

Two artists awarded commissions in third year of APP Creative Commissions Programme

Access and Participation

The APP Creative Commissions Programme aims to increase the presence of practitioners of minoritised ethnicities interacting with the University and to challenge and develop pedagogy by generating inclusive debate.

The programme is part of the University’s 2020-21 to 2024-25 Access and Participation Plan, an ambitious five-year plan to develop access to, success during, and progression following university for students from underrepresented groups, including students of Black, Asian and other minoritised ethnicities. The creatives will be provided with a research and production budget and artist’s fee.

Hardeep Pandhal has shown work in numerous solo and group exhibitions, including, most recently: The New Art Gallery Walsall (2023); British Art Show 9, Manchester, Wolverhampton, Aberdeen (2021-22); Goldsmiths Centre of Contemporary Art (2020); Tramway, Glasgow (2020); Whitechapel Art Gallery, London (2019); South London Gallery, London (2018); New Museum, New York (2018).

Pandhal was born in Birmingham, UK in 1985. He received his BA from Leeds Beckett University, Leeds in 2007 and an MFA from Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow in 2013. Pandhal was selected for Bloomberg New Contemporaries in 2013, shortlisted for the Jarman Award in 2018 and received the Paul Hamlyn Award for Artists in 2021.

“I am delighted to be awarded this commission. Building upon many years of critical engagement in institutional contexts, the award comes at a turning point in my life, as I begin to dedicate more of my time and energy developing my studio practice.”

Hardeep Pandhal

Corissa Duhra, a Northampton native, turned her childhood dream into reality, transitioning from furniture making to pursue art. Disheartened by the complexities of traditional art, she developed an inclusive practice, breathing life into discarded items and affordable materials including wooden pallets and atta dough. Her work unfolds captivating narratives of displacement, isolation, and community, delving into intricate facets of the human experience. Consciously using accessible language, Duhra's art serves as a philosophical exploration of human connection, distilling personal evolution into powerful and evocative pieces that capture the essence of her roots and the universal human experience.

“I'm incredibly grateful to the panel for accepting my proposal and opening a dialogue surrounding diversity. Incorporating sign language and braille early on sets a precedent for my career and helps unite our community. Inclusivity extends beyond our own experience, and I'm excited to be part of the change!”

Corissa Duhra

The proposals were judged by a selection panel with invited external panellist, Dr Laura Claveria, Exhibitions Curator at The Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery , Pro-Vice-Chancellor Education, Professor Dave Russell, University Curator, Dr Marianna Tsionki, and Access and Participation Development Manager, Dr Laura da Costa.

"We're delighted to once again offer these commissions to promote the work of talented artists. Now in its third year, the programme is a part of the University's Access and Participation Plan, which seeks to raise the value and importance of Higher Education in building viable careers in the arts for all. We are very excited at the prospect of sharing the outcomes of the commissions publicly once they have been completed.”

Professor Dave Russell, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Education

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