Art organisation offers bursaries to support Purbeck artistic talent

Artists in Purbeck, including those in Swanage, are being encouraged to apply for a bursary to help them develop their careers and access new opportunities.

Purbeck Art Weeks (PAW) – the organisation that runs two weeks of art exhibitions and workshops across Purbeck over the summer – is committed to fostering and supporting local artistic talent and the bursary is one way it hopes to achieve that aim.

Emily Burns receiving her bursary award from Charlotte Heath

Artist Emily Burns (left) receiving a bursary award from PAW chair Charlotte Heath (right)

Financial assistance and support

The one-off bursaries from PAW, provide financial assistance and support to both visual and performing artists, giving them greater opportunities to contribute to the arts scene in Purbeck.

Awards in the past have helped develop careers in painting, life drawing, printmaking, photography, music, ballet, contemporary dance, opera singing and silversmithing.

Art work at Purbeck Art Weeks at Rollington Barn

Rollington Barn near Corfe Castle is the hub of the PAW Festival

“Investing in the aspirations of local artists”

Laurel Hart from Purbeck Art Weeks said:

“The bursaries are not just financial support; they are a way of encouraging local talent, carving pathways for local artists to access opportunities and pushing their boundaries.

“It’s about investing in the aspirations of local artists and deepening access to creative opportunities. Supporting artists today means a richer cultural scene for everyone tomorrow.”

The bursary fund is generously supported by the late John Flower, and applications are welcomed from artists in Purbeck who are 16 years or over.

Artworjk at Purbeck Art Weeks at Rollington Barn

Artists exhibit their work over the two weeks at their studios or at Rollington Barn

Two week summer festival

PAW Festival in 2024 will take place from Saturday 25th May to Sunday 9th June 2024. Usually there are around 40 Open Studios during the two week festival with a collective exhibition at Rollington Barn near Corfe Castle.

Alongside the visual arts, a range of events, including concerts and talks by local experts, are offered in different venues around Purbeck in the evenings.

The festival provides a high profile platform for artists to showcase their talent and engage with the vibrant artistic community in Purbeck. For all artists wishing to exhibit in 2024, applications open on Monday 1st January 2024.

Artist David Hyde with eight foot tall metal snowdrop
David Hyde

Metal worker David Hyde is a big fan of the PAW Festival

“Full of interesting and stimulating art”

David Hyde of Verdigris Metals said:

“I found PAW to be extremely well organised, full of interesting and stimulating art and that I was very happy with the sales made and would completely recommend it to new artists… in fact my partner should be entering as a newcomer next year and I certainly will be entering again”

The deadline by which artists should apply to take part is Wednesday 31st January 2024.

Further information

  • Artists interested in learning more about PAW bursaries and the application process, are encouraged to get in touch at
  • More about the application process and requirements to exhibit at PAW 2024 is on its website

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