For this open call we are inviting artists to propose a project that engages creatively and critically with Chetham’s Library, and to produce new work including an artist’s publication after an initial period of research/residency.

You Must Locate A Fantasy is Book Works’ ongoing Library Residencies Programme, presenting a series of residencies and commissions for artists to work with libraries, special collections and archives located in the UK.

Chetham’s Library has something very special to offer in terms of its resources, that will provide a starting point for an artist to research and produce something political, poetic, unexpected, ephemeral etc., that can draw out the unique qualities of the library collection and the artist’s own interests.

Project brief
We are interested in proposals that make connections: between the research material you access in the library collection and the finished work; between yourself and the real or imagined audiences that access the collection; between the present in which you work and the histories of the collection; between the personal and potential communities of the library or collection.

Commissioned work will take the form of printed matter, but might also include performance/live works, installation/exhibition and film, talks and readings or online material etc., or a combination of the above in terms of its outcome. You will develop the content and format of the artist’s book with Book Works, including scope of the book and edition number.

We are looking for imaginative, persuasive proposals that can be realised within our time frame, and applicants should be able to demonstrate that their project can be achieved successfully.

The residency/research period will be 4 weeks to be negotiated with Book Works and Chetham’s Library. We understand once the research period has started plans may develop and/or change so it is important you demonstrate a method for your practice as well as your interests, experience and past projects that might inform our selection.

We are keen that your project relates to the library location and its audience, and anticipate you working with us on an associated events programme to draw in new audiences/participants to engage with the project.

The new work produced will be shown at Chetham’s Library, and its exhibition/events space in the Waterhouse Building, depending on the specific outcomes of your project. In addition, Book Works will programme events in collaboration with Chetham’s and you in relation to your work and the library’s collections.

Previous commissions in this ongoing project are with Kit Poulson, with Chelsea SPACE, and Chelsea College of Arts Library, and Sophie Collins, with the Glasgow Women’s Library. Books by each of these artists will be published in 2017.

YOU MUST LOCATE A FANTASY – CHETHAM’S LIBRARY RESIDENCY; ; August 1970; | Downloads: Chetham’s Residency Application and EO form final (pdf)