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The Harlow Open, an established exhibition that showcases and encourages the talent of Harlow and beyond, is open for submissions. Anybody can submit and this year the brief is to creat an artwork (in any medium) measuring exactly 20x20cm. See our Future Exhibitions page for the full brief; http://www.gibberdgallery.co.uk/index.php/what-s-on/exhibitions

Lee Grandjean | Saturday 25th April 2020 - Saturday 11th July 2020

This exhibition will take a retrospective view of Grandjean’s practice, showing work from the 1970s to the present day. 

The Harlow Open is an established exhibition that showcases and encourages the talent of Harlow and beyond. This year we invitited the creative community of Harlow and beyond to submit entries in any medium, the brief simply that it must measure 20cm x 20cm (x20cm for sculptural work). We saw a record number of entries, all of which you can enjoy in the Gibberd Gallery until Saturday 4th April. The exhibition opened on Thursday 23rd January 6.30pm with an evening viewing and prize-giving. Our judges were James Bassant, CEO of Astro lighting, Robyn Bailey, alumni of Young Curators and board member of Creative Ways Harlow CIC, and Meriel Clarke, this year's Sculpture Town Artist In Residence. 

"It was a highly enjoyable and rewarding experience judging the 20 x 20 Harlow Open. The wealth of talent and the variety of artwork on display made choosing the winners challenging, but each of the awarded entries offered something that surprised, delighted and engaged." Meriel Clarke 

"We couldn't be more humbled by the fantastic turnout for Harlow Open 2020. Your attendance and interest showed us all that our community really cares about supporting the arts and each other. To all who exhibited, thank you for sharing your talents with us, and to our under 18 submissions, you have all shown courage by putting your work out into the public eye. Keep on being bold!" Robyn Bailey 

If you come and visit please share your thoughts in our visitors book and vote in our People's Choice award. The winning artist will be offered the chance to exhibit in our Windows Gallery for two weeks. Don't forget to follow us on social media (see home page) and share your impressions with our digital community. 

Harlow Art Trust is currently inviting submissions from artists to add the latest work of art to Harlow Sculpture Town.

29/04/2019

The artist will create a new permanent artwork or works for a development of 125 homes in Harlow, Essex. The site is a threshold between a new playground and a church. Artists are invited to respond to the church’s historic links to the Industrial Revolution and the abolition of slavery. The project is funded by the developer through a section 106 planning agreement. The total budget for the selected sculpture is £36,400 inclusive of artist fee, materials, fabrication and installation on site. Shortlisted artists will be paid an honorarium fee of £500 for developing their proposals. 

Harlow Sculpture Town

Over the past 70 years, a collection of over 90 public sculptures has grown in and amongst the residential, civic and leisure areas across Harlow. This has earned it the accolade Harlow Sculpture Town. The collection has its genesis in the early days of the town itself, built as part of a nationwide programme of post-war reconstruction. In keeping with the 1945 government’s emphasis on access to arts and culture for all, Harlow’s Master Planner Sir Frederick Gibberd was uncompromising in his vision that Harlow would be home not only to high quality housing, amenities and expansive green spaces, but also to the finest works of art: an emblem of civic renewal and social progress in the wake of the second world war. To achieve it, he established Harlow Art Trust in 1953 with a mission to beautify the town by commissioning and maintaining public art, and it has been in operation ever since.

Today, Harlow is home to an eclectic mix of sculptures by both world-famous and lesser known artists. Six sculptures have been listed Grade-II by English Heritage, including work by Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth and Auguste Rodin. The works are part of the town’s social fabric, repositories of personal histories and collective memory. They remain a focal point of cultural activity for schools, community groups, and visitors. Harlow Art Trust works with developers to commission new work and also runs an annual Sculpture Town Artist in Residence programme, ensuring that as the town grows and welcomes new residents, so too does its collection of public art.

Download the Artists’ Brief and Application Form for full details. 

Deadline for applications: Monday 3rd June 2019, 23:59

The deadline for submissions to the Open | Open has been extended to 23:59 on Monday 22nd April.


CALL FOR ENTRIES: The Open | Open 2019

The Gibberd Gallery is inviting submissions from all comers who enjoy a challenge to show us how the town of Harlow, Essex, inspires creativity. This exhibition will mark the soft launch of a new and improved Sculpture Town map that will make it easy for users to get out and about and enjoy the sculpture collection, whether they have five minutes or five hours.

Submissions are accepted responding to the following brief:

Where a sculpture is sited in the town has a huge impact on how we perceive it. The site of each sculpture is just as important as the thing itself. As a post-war new town, Harlow was carefully planned from start to finish by landscape architect and master planner Sir Frederick Gibberd. The Open Open is about intervening in this environment and seeing it afresh.

Place something - anything - somewhere within the parameters of Harlow Town (postcodes CM17 to CM20) and photograph it. This is an opportunity to compose, juxtapose, intervene, disrupt, counterbalance, contrive, accentuate and generally explore relationships between things and their environment. When we say something we really do mean some ‘thing’: a readymade object, a drawing, a sculpture, a painting, model, performance, natural form, a print, a dialogue, an architectural form, a mineral, a vegetable (just not an animal.)

We particularly welcome submissions engaging with Harlow’s abundant public art collection of over 90 sculptures which are in equal measure hidden and in plain sight all around the town, or with its architecture of any period and purpose.

All submissions will be printed on photographic paper and exhibited in the Gibberd Gallery. Our independent panel of judges will award prizes generously sponsored by Astro Lighting at a special opening of the exhibition on Saturday 27th April. Selected images will also take over the gallery social media channels for one month during the exhibition.

CONDITIONS OF ENTRY

What kind of camera you use to capture the dynamic between your thing and its environment is up to you, but the image you submit must be in digital form, no more than 3500 pixels on the longest length and with an image resolution between 240 and 300 pixels per inch (PPI). Your image file must be named using the following format: ‘surname_first name_openopen’. 

The exhibition is open to anyone aged 16 or over on the first day of the call for entries and while you don’t have to be from Harlow to enter, your image does have to be made here. People working under a pseudonym or collaboratively are eligible to apply, so long as they fulfil the above criteria.

**Please note: there will be a £3 submission fee for entrants over the age of 25. This is payable in person at the gallery. We hope also to have an online payment option up and running soon.**

To enter your image for Open Open, email it as an attachment to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 23:59 on Monday 22nd April 2019 along with a completed submissions form, available to downloadhere.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I print my own image and bring it in?

No. The image must be submitted as a digital file online as per the specifications in the brief. If you are using an analogue camera or physically altering your image in some way, you will need to scan your image and email it to us.

How many images can I submit to the Open Open? 

You can submit as many images as you like, but only one will be displayed in the exhibition

Can I use digital postproduction to create or edit my image?

You can use digital postproduction to create and/or edit your image. If you are editing an image somebody else has taken, you should as far as possible attain permission and provide details of whose it is.

Will I be able to keep the printed image once the exhibition is finished?

Any image not sold will be yours to keep after the exhibition closes on Saturday 20th July. You will be able to collect your image from the Gibberd Gallery until Thursday 27th September.

How can I pay my submissions fee?

 If you are under 25 years old, entry is free.  If you are over 25, you can pay your submissions fee at the Gibberd Gallery. 

What do you do with the money raised through submission fees?

Funds raised through submission fees are used to cover costs related to the exhibition and its programme of events. The Gibberd Gallery is run by Harlow Art Trust, and is a not-for-profit charity (charity number: 212559).

Why have you changed from the regular format of the Harlow Open this year?

The format of the exhibition has changed to mark the launch of a new and improved Harlow Sculpture Town map, which we hope will encourage people to get out and about in Harlow and see the sculptures and their surroundings in a new light. We also hope the change of challenge will encourage people who would not otherwise enter to get involved.

Will the regular format of the Harlow Open return in 2020?

The Open Open is an experiment and an exciting opportunity for both the Gibberd Gallery and its audiences to reflect on how it can best serve visitors and Harlow residents alike. All feedback we receive relating to the exhibition will be given due consideration when planning future programmes.

CALL FOR ENTRIES: The Open | Open 2019

The Gibberd Gallery is inviting submissions from all comers who enjoy a challenge to show us how the town of Harlow, Essex, inspires creativity. This exhibition will mark the soft launch of a new and improved Sculpture Town map that will make it easy for users to get out and about and enjoy the sculpture collection, whether they have five minutes or five hours.

 

Submissions are accepted responding to the following brief:

Where a sculpture is sited in the town has a huge impact on how we perceive it. The site of each sculpture is just as important as the thing itself. As a post-war new town, Harlow was carefully planned from start to finish by landscape architect and master planner Sir Frederick Gibberd. The Open Open is about intervening in this environment and seeing it afresh.

Place something - anything - somewhere within the parameters of Harlow Town (postcodes CM17 to CM20) and photograph it. This is an opportunity to compose, juxtapose, intervene, disrupt, counterbalance, contrive, accentuate and generally explore relationships between things and their environment. When we say something we really do mean some ‘thing’: a readymade object, a drawing, a sculpture, a painting, model, performance, natural form, a print, a dialogue, an architectural form, a mineral, a vegetable (just not an animal.)

We particularly welcome submissions engaging with Harlow’s abundant public art collection of over 90 sculptures which are in equal measure hidden and in plain sight all around the town, or with its architecture of any period and purpose.

All submissions will be printed on photographic paper and exhibited in the Gibberd Gallery. Our independent panel of judges will award prizes generously sponsored by Astro Lighting at a special opening of the exhibition on Saturday 27th April. Selected images will also take over the gallery social media channels for one month during the exhibition.

 

CONDITIONS OF ENTRY

What kind of camera you use to capture the dynamic between your thing and its environment is up to you, but the image you submit must be in digital form, no more than 3500 pixels on the longest length and with an image resolution between 240 and 300 pixels per inch (PPI). Your image file must be named using the following format: ‘surname_first name_openopen’. 

The exhibition is open to anyone aged 16 or over on the first day of the call for entries and while you don’t have to be from Harlow to enter, your image does have to be made here. People working under a pseudonym or collaboratively are eligible to apply, so long as they fulfil the above criteria.

**Please note: there will be a £3 submission fee for entrants over the age of 25. This is payable in person at the gallery. We hope also to have an online payment option up and running soon.**

To enter your image for Open Open, email it as an attachment to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 23:59 on Sunday 21st April 2019 along with a completed submissions form, available to download here.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I print my own image and bring it in?

No. The image must be submitted as a digital file online as per the specifications in the brief. If you are using an analogue camera or physically altering your image in some way, you will need to scan your image and email it to us.

 

How many images can I submit to the Open Open? 

You can submit as many images as you like, but only one will be displayed in the exhibition

Can I use digital postproduction to create or edit my image?

You can use digital postproduction to create and/or edit your image. If you are editing an image somebody else has taken, you should as far as possible attain permission and provide details of whose it is.

Will I be able to keep the printed image once the exhibition is finished?

Any image not sold will be yours to keep after the exhibition closes on Saturday 20th July. You will be able to collect your image from the Gibberd Gallery until Thursday 27th September.

How can I pay my submissions fee?

 If you are under 25 years old, entry is free. We are currently having some technical problems setting up our online payment portal and are working to resolve them. In the meantime, if you are over 25, you can pay your submissions fee at the Gibberd Gallery. 

What do you do with the money raised through submission fees?

Funds raised through submission fees are used to cover costs related to the exhibition and its programme of events. The Gibberd Gallery is run by Harlow Art Trust, and is a not-for-profit charity (charity number: 212559).

Why have you changed from the regular format of the Harlow Open this year?

The format of the exhibition has changed to mark the launch of a new and improved Harlow Sculpture Town map, which we hope will encourage people to get out and about in Harlow and see the sculptures and their surroundings in a new light. We also hope the change of challenge will encourage people who would not otherwise enter to get involved.

Will the regular format of the Harlow Open return in 2020?

The Open Open is an experiment and an exciting opportunity for both the Gibberd Gallery and its audiences to reflect on how it can best serve visitors and Harlow residents alike. All feedback we receive relating to the exhibition will be given due consideration when planning future programmes.

Join us as we launch our Sculpture Guardians Scheme at 2pm on Saturday 26th January.
This is a wonderful opportunity for you to do something new, help make a positive difference to our town, learn more about our super sculptures, gain new skills in conservation and make new friends. 
Drop in for an informal talk on the town's collection by Tour Leader Jenny Lushington. There will also be a chance to see the just-opened special exhibition Colour Has No Words, a solo show by Cedric Christie. 
Come along and meet the Harlow Art Trust Team and the Friends of Harlow Sculpture and Gibberd Gallery.
Our Guardians Programme is part of our Access to Harlow Sculpture Town supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund. 
 

There will be some exciting changes to the format of the Harlow Open in 2019. We will be making an announcement with all the details in the new year. In the meantime please note that the dates will be Thursday 18th April to Saturday 20th July, a change from the exhibition's usual slot in January. 

The opening of Metropolitan Wares - the second annual Sculpture Town Artist in Residence exhibition will be from 1-3pm at The Gibberd Gallery in Harlow, Essex on Saturday 17th November.

Metropolitan Wares is a solo presentation of new and developing work by the 2017/18 artist in residence, Paloma Proudfoot. Its title refers to Metropolitan Slipware, highly decorated pottery produced in Harlow in the 17th century so-called because much of it went to be sold on the London market as affordable household ceramics. Inscribed with Puritanical inscriptions such as 'FAST AND PRAY' and 'FOR EARTH I AM', Metropolitan Slipware speaks to the different ways people have communicated their beliefs and allegiances through everyday objects over time, obvious today in the prevalence of slogan clothing. Items loaned from Harlow Museum will sit alongside Proudfoots's own work in ceramics and clothes-making, and artwork inspired by her practice and produced in artist-led workshops will be on display in the Hideaway Gallery.

Paloma Proudfoot (b.1992) lives and works in London.

Sculpture Town Artist in Residence programme
Founded in 1953, Harlow Art Trust (HAT), is the custodian of a nationally significant collection of over 90 public sculptures, which includes work by Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth and Elisabeth Frink. Since 2016, HAT has partnered with the Royal College of Art, Harlow College, ACAVA studios, Pearsons Education and the Public Monuments & Sculpture Association to run an annual sculpture residency for a graduating RCA MA Sculpture student. Recipients to date have been Finn Thomson (2016/17), Paloma Proudfoot (2017/18) and Camille Yvert (2018/19). 

The STAIR is provided with a studio in the centre of town, mentoring, and bursaries for materials, travel and subsistence. There is no brief or direction imposed on the artist as to what may be produced during their residency, so long as they challenge themselves through the environment of Harlow and a ‘thing/s’ are made for a solo exhibition at the Gibberd Gallery. During the residency the STAIR also takes the lead in primary, secondary and tertiary level education workshops supported by Harlow College and the Public Monuments & Sculpture Association. After their exhibition, a piece of artwork is selected for donation to Harlow Art Trust’s collection, a new legacy of contemporary sculpture for the town.

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