Winner of Adam Reynold’s Memorial Bursary 2016/17 announced


The successful recipient of Shape Arts’ 2016/17 Adam Reynolds Memorial Bursary and accompanying three month artist residency, hosted by Turner Contemporary, Margate, is revealed as sculptor Oliver Macdonald. Oliver will receive a £7000 bursary and begins his residency at Turner Contemporary in February 2017.

Sculpture by Oliver Macdonald which features and ice cream van with a woven speaker coming out of one of the windows

One of Oliver Macdonald’s pieces ‘Untitled’ , ice cream van, willow, metal. Photograph: Ivan Coleman.

The news was announced by Sir Nicholas Serota, current Director of Tate and soon-to-be Chair of Arts Council England, at the ‘Friends of Shape’ evening reception at the National Theatre last night (13 October 2016).

The ARMB, set up in memory of sculptor Adam Reynolds, supports mid-career disabled artists looking to develop their practice and build their profile by offering funds and a three month residency at a high-profile arts venue.

Oliver Macdonald was selected as the recipient of the ARMB by a panel comprising: Tony Heaton – Chief Executive, Shape; Fiona Parry – Programme Curator, Turner Contemporary; Molly Molloy – Learning Officer, Turner Contemporary; and Terry Smith – independent artist and curator. Originally trained as a basket weaver and wood carver, Oliver explores the act of skilled craftsmanship through a conceptual lens, examining and interpolating issues around disability and the art world such as exclusion, pointlessness, obsolescence and reverence. His work can be seen on his website.

On receiving this award Oliver Macdonald commented:

“I am truly delighted to have been selected for the Adam Reynolds Memorial Bursary 2017, and I would like to thank everyone involved. It will provide me with a much needed opportunity to reinvest time and energy into my practice in an environment that supports and embraces the challenges that come with being a disabled artist. This is such an amazing and vital scheme that provides a practical solution to the needs of artists such as myself.”

Victoria Pomery OBE, Director of Turner Contemporary, said:

“Turner Contemporary is committed to making our programme as accessible and inclusive as possible so is thrilled to be supporting Shape through hosting the 2017 Adam Reynolds Memorial Bursary. Artists are the lifeblood of what we do and hosting this residency in our Clore Learning Studio will create a fantastic opportunity for our audiences to engage directly with Oliver. Working with the successful recipient for three months supports our commitment to making ourselves relevant to diverse audiences and will allow us to build on our existing staff training to improve confidence in working with disabled people across our team.”

Tony Heaton OBE, CEO of Shape, said:

“This year’s ARMB attracted the most applications ever. The standard was incredibly high, which speaks volumes for both the Bursary and Turner Contemporary, who have been a brilliant gallery for us to work with throughout the planning. I am really looking forward to seeing what Oliver Macdonald will do with this opportunity and I know the gallery and staff will be an amazing resource for him during the course of his residency.”