For an artist, the hunt is engrossing, never-ending: where to look for new ideas and where to find the resources needed to bring a new vision to life?
In one word: SWAP. Now in its third go-round, the SWAP: UK/Ukraine Residency Programme has been enriching the world of the visual arts of both the UK and Ukraine, supporting promising artists with that which they need most: time, support and new material.
The British Council in Ukraine has forged a vibrant relationship between progressive centres for the arts in Ukraine and the UK’s largest visual arts event — the Liverpool Biennial. In our brief history, we have placed 20 artists and curators from both Britain and Ukraine in roughly six-week residencies in Liverpool, Kyiv, Kharkiv, Muzychi, Uzhorod, and the Biruchiy Peninsula in the Sea of Azov. This year, the list will grow by another ten generously supported residencies.
The results produced reflect an embarrassment of riches. Exhibits and projects that span cultures and generations, artists with new and shared experiences and a world that has carved out more place in its heart for beauty and less for violence. In 2017, with the assistance of our Visual Arts team in London, Kyiv saw the astonishing work of Turner Prize laureate Grayson Perry in exhibition.
This is just a taste of what SWAP: UK/Ukraine Residency Programme is, and does. See inside for more.