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Unsung Tottenham

Artist Commission

Who writes our history? What is included in the narrative? Often those who hold the most power
in society have control over the histories that we are exposed to. Our aim is to enable ordinary
people to take back control of their own histories.


The Bernie Grant Archive at the Bishopsgate Institute is a fascinating collection that tells the
stories’ of the progress of race relations in this country between the 80’s and the present day.
Bernie himself devoted his life and work to this cause, and the creative responses produced will
communicate the key political themes from the archive to a contemporary audience in exciting
artistic ways.

This work aims to enable young Londoners to better understand the legacy of Black and Asian
British History, and learn from it. In a climate of increased tension around identity, citizenship,
immigration, and race relations within the UK, this work is both timely and essential. The project
has been commissioned by the Bernie Grant Archive in collaboration with Emergency Exit Artists.

For more information on the project:



The artists will create work that responds to the theme of “Hidden Figures”. Taking inspiration
from Bernie Grant’s story, the work should highlight individuals that have made a positive impact
on society but are under-acknowledged. This will culminate in an event that celebrates the
achievement and talent of people from BAME backgrounds, giving young people a sense of
ownership over their history.

The event will focus predominantly on performance based arts—spoken word, poetry, music,
theatre, dance—but other proposals will also be considered.

The selected artists will have 3 weeks to complete their work. The piece will go live on Friday the
25th of October 2019 to be performed/showcased at the event curated by the producers.

We are especially encouraging artists from Tottenham, or those with a connection to the area, to
submit their work.

This is a paid opportunity. Successful artists will receive a fee of £175 for their work.
The submission deadline is 10am on 28/08/19

Audience: People local to Tottenham with diverse experiences of the area (16-30 year olds)

Location: Bernie Grant Arts Centre

Submission details:

In responding to this brief please provide:

● A written proposal of 250 - 500 words

● Details of how long the piece will be (roughly)
● What the piece requires (lighting, space, equipment, etc...)

And one of the following:

○ A video (no longer than 10 minutes) .mov or mp4 is good for us

○ Audio material/ voice recording (no longer than 10 minutes) .wav or .mp3 good for
○ A powerpoint presentation including images/visual material (of no more than 10

You may also include examples of previous work (if you think this will further support your

TO APPLY: Please send your application to unsung.tottenham@gmail.com stating ‘Proposal’ in

the title. Please feel free to contact us with any other queries or questions.

We particularly welcome applications from those who identify as Black, Asian and Minority
ethnic (BAME), LGBTQI+ and disabled.