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How to become a Fellow

Applicants complete an application form, stating their preferred location and an interview is arranged soon after. Applicants are asked to present their work in a short, friendly interview with a selection panel made up of existing Fellows and Trustees. The selection criteria emphasise originality of work, commitment to becoming a professional artist and likelihood to benefit from becoming a Digswell Fellow.

Prospective Fellows must understand

How the Trust operates: the Trust

  1. is a registered charity with studios in Digswell and Letchworth.
  2. has no staff either part or full time.
  3. is managed by its Fellows under a Board of Trustees who meet quarterly and as required.
  4. all Trustees have specific areas of responsibility – Chairman, legal, governance, health and safety, treasury, Fellows support, interviews, academic support. Trustees give their time freely and are a mix of working and retired professionals. A few are also ex Fellows.
  5. manages within its own financial resources, is not grant aided, but is supported with low rents and rates from the borough councils within which it operates and to whom it has obligations .
  6. those obligations, as a registered charity, are its objects 1)The assistance of persons who intend to or have become artists or craftsmen 2) The promotion of education and training in art and allied subjects. 3) The promotion of the appreciation of art.
  7. the Fellows manage the studios, all playing their part. Fellows at each location take on specific roles such as Fellows Representative, Web Representative and Facilities, H & S Representative for which they receive a small reduction to their ‘Fellows contribution’.
  8. has a 60 year history of achievement in the Arts with several major world class artists amongst its Fellows and many others serving in the arts and in educational establishments nationwide.
  9. The Trust encompasses the Fellows, Print Members and Trustees working together.

The nature of Fellowship

  1. The Fellows manage the studios.
  2. Fellowship lasts for up to five years. Fellowship includes a well lit, warm studio in one of our studio locations with kitchen facilities.
  3. Fellows are selected on the basis of need, their work, and their value to the community which they will join.
  4. Fellows are typically committed artists and craftsmen often University educated with the ambition to emerge as professionals and masters of their craft and the need for Fellowship with Digswell Arts to achieve this.
  5. Fellowship is only given to emerging artists who value the opportunity to work with others and are prepared to ‘pull their weight’ in running the studio.
  6. Fellows pay a ‘Fellowship contribution’ of £80/month rising by £10 per month each year up to a maximum of £120 in the 5th year by standing order. This very low rate can only be maintained providing all Fellows pay on time by standing order. The Trust makes no profits and all surpluses are reinvested to the benefit of its objects. Fellows who fail to pay their contributions are asked to leave.
  7. A returnable deposit of £80 equal to the first months Fellows contribution must be paid on acceptance of Fellowship. This deposit will be repaid when the trustees are satisfied that the studio has been properly cleared and the keys have been returned.
  8. Sabbaticals are granted should the Fellow wish to take time out for personal reasons. Fellows returning at the end of a sabbatical go to the top of the waiting list for the next available studio at their chosen studio location.
  9. Fellows who fail to make regular use of the studio will be asked to leave.
  10. potential Fellows who already work in the local community and therefore support the Trust’s second object will be at an advantage in the selection process.
  11. Fellows are expected to play a full part in the ‘life of the studio’ especially in events organised as part of our obligations to the local community.
  12. There are occasional activities made available to Fellows to support their development. These include social activities, an annual UH Trust get together, open studios and external mentoring.
  13. Fellows must promote the Trust through their activities whilst a Fellow and exemplify the values of the Trust externally.
  14. Fellows must follow the studio rules and health and safety policies of the Trust.

If you believe that fellowship is for you and you can meet these criteria, please apply. Applicants are advised shortly after interview of their success or failure. Application forms and further information is here