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Quay Arts Biennial Open Exhibition 2021: ‘FREEDOM’


Application Deadline: Sunday 23rd May 2021, midnight

Emerging and established artists are invited to submit works in any medium for Quay Arts’ biennial Open Exhibition 2021, titled ‘Freedom’.

– Selected group exhibition in the West Gallery in 2022
– Solo exhibition in the West Gallery in 2023

Preview & Prize Giving: Saturday 26th June, 6 – 8pm. Exhibition continues till Sunday 29th August 2021.

‘FREEDOM’ OPEN 2021 Brief:
With the title and theme ‘Freedom’, we’re looking for works exploring ideas centred around current freedoms or lack of. Works exploring this theme can be produced in any medium but must be within 2m x 2m dimensions, max no of works x3.

One artist will be selected from the Open Exhibition 2021 for a solo exhibition at Quay Arts in the West Gallery in 2023. A further selection of up to 7 artists will be selected for a specially curated group exhibition in the West Gallery for early 2022.

Selection Panel:
Rachel Johnston – Open 2019 Winner, Eugene Dugan-Brause – Arts Manager, Quay Arts & Ian Whitmore – Visual Arts Manager, Quay Arts.

Important dates to remember

Application deadline
Sun 23 May, midnight
Notification of selection by
Fri 28 May
Delivery of work to Quay Arts
Sun 20 & Mon 21 June, 10am–5pm
Preview & Prize Giving
Sat 26 Jun, 6 – 8pm
Exhibition dates
Sat 26 Jun – Sun 29 Aug 2021
Collection of work after the exhibition
Mon 30 & Tue 31 Aug 2021, 10am–5pm


Click HERE to submit your one-of £20 submission fee. Entrants must be 18 yrs or over. (Link opens in new window).

Complete the application form below and attach all relevant documentation to support your submission.
A confirmation e-mail will be sent once you have submitted your form – please check JUNK folder if no e-mail is received.

Please ensure you have read the Terms & Conditions before applying.

    Quay Arts Biennial Open Exhibition 2021
    Application form

    Full Name


    Email Address

    Date of Birth


    Artist Statement (300 words max.)


    Please attach visual representations of the work you wish to exhibit.
    Max no of works 3. Max file size 6mb per work.
    For film/audio works, please provide web links.
    If works are still in development, please provide sketches or photos of previous work.

    Please include the following details for each work submitted ensuring the file name corresponds with the title of the artwork. If a piece of work is for sale please ensure the figure supplied factors in Quay Arts commission @ 40% +VAT




    If submitting video/audio files please submit links to hosted videos below (ie: YouTube/Vimeo/SoundCloud etc)



    If any of your work has specific technical instructions for installation, please provide details here:


    Terms & Conditions: Works must be available for the duration of the exhibition. The selection panel’s decision is final and the display of works is at the discretion of the curatorial team. Quay Arts reserves the right to use images submitted to publicise the exhibition. Where appropriate, all selected work must be properly framed and glazed to a high standard with fixings attached when delivered to Quay Arts. Quay Arts reserves the right not to exhibit a selected piece if it does not meet the presentation standards

    Quay Arts is situated within an ex-brewery warehouse on the banks of the River Medina and is the leading Arts Centre on the Isle of Wight. Quay Arts supports the development and display of new work by contemporary visual artists. The West Gallery was designed by award-winning architect Tony Fretton (Camden Arts Centre, Lisson Gallery, ArtSway) and presents work of national and international interest. It has hosted eclectic exhibitions including solo shows by Rachel Whiteread, Andy Goldsworthy, Kurt Jackson, Martin Creed, Vija Celmins and Richard Long.

    Previous Open Exhibition winners include:
    Rachel Johnston (2019 – Open ‘A Life in Nature’); Caroline Underwood (2017 – Open ‘I must down to the seas again); Joanna Kori (2015 – Open); Holly Cade & Liz Sterry (2013 – Open ‘Duet’); Katayoun Dowlatshahi (2010/11 – Open); and Julian Rowe (2008 – Open ‘Location’).

    For further information, please contact Ian Whitmore – Visual Arts Manager :

    Quay News Take Part News

    AGM Announcement

    AGM Announcement

    Steve Ross Foundation for the Arts
    Thursday 28th January 2021 | 6pm | Taking place via Zoom

    Quay Arts gives notice of the SRFA Annual General Meeting on Thursday 28th January at 6pm. Due to the current national lockdown, the AGM will be held via Zoom. If you would to attend this year’s AGM, please fill out the contact form and we will send you the zoom link via email closer to the date.

      Your Name

      Your Email

      Contact number

      Cafe Bar News Quay News Take Part News What's On News


      Quay Arts will be re-opening on Saturday 4th July. And we want to reassure all our customers that we are working hard to put all the measures in place so you can have a safe visit here at the Quay.

      In line with the latest Government guidance, we are excited to confirm that Quay Arts will be reopening on Saturday 4th July – we can’t wait to welcome you back!

      Your safety and our staff’s safety continues to be our top priority and this is the first step of a phased reopening. And we want to reassure all our customers that we are working hard to put all the measures in place so you can have a safe visit here at the Quay.


      • A new queuing system to protect customers and staff
      • Socially distanced table plan in the café
      • Hand sanitisers available around the building
      • One person at a time in the toilets
      • Limited menu available and additional take away options
      • Staff wearing PPE for table service
      • Protective perspex on the bar
      • Reduced opening hours to 10am – 4pm
      • Tables and chairs will be wiped down and sanitised after every customer use

      Please DO NOT come into Quay Arts if you are showing any COVID-19 symptoms – coughing, sneezing, sore throat high temperature or loss of taste and smell. DO NOT come into Quay Arts if you have been in contact with someone with COVID-19.


      The galleries will be re-opened as of Saturday 4th July, with a one way system in place for guidance in regards to social distancing. Due to the current situation, the exhibition will be on display in the West Gallery will be the ‘Great Leap Forward’ Exhibition, which was running before lock down. We also have a NEW exhibition in the Clayden Gallery, ‘Battle of the Bands’, musical icons rendered in cardboard from the Hullabaloo At Home Festival 2020!


      The craft shop will remain closed but we hope to re-open very soon.


      As we are following the government guidelines, we are still unsure when we will be able to resume with our live events. For the time being, we have had shows reschedule for the later on in the year, and we will be regular contact with ticket holders to any shows which have been rescheduled or cancelled. Watch this space for more updates.


      We are currently working on a risk assessment for the re-opening of Jubilee Stores. This may involve reducing class sizes and putting measures in place for regular classes to run smoothly and safely for all participants and tutors. Watch this space for more updates!


      We can’t thank the public enough for the all the ongoing support we have received during this difficult time, whether that’s by making a donation or simply sharing your support online. We can’t wait to see you all again – please bear with us whilst we try work out the new normal! Thank you.

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      Mike Howley Trust: Funding Round now OPEN!

      Funding Opportunity for Young Island Creatives

      The 2020 Mike Howley Trust awards are now open for applications.

      Mike Howley, who worked for many years as Director of Cultural Services for the Isle of Wight Council, died in May 2013, leaving part of his estate for the specific benefit of aspiring young actors, musicians, dancers and writers, between the ages of 18 and 30, living on the Isle of Wight”.

       Trustees welcome applications from people within the stated age range and art forms for investment in areas such as training, equipment, marketing & promotion, recording, rehearsal space, staging, publishing costs, or simply time to create.  If you fit the bill and have an idea you are burning to put into action, we would like to hear from you.

      Due to the advent of the coronavirus and our current key state of lockdown, we will be looking at all applications digitally and via email this year.

      Please read the guidelines carefully and return your application form to Megan at by Fri 24 April 2020, together with a short video about your project – no longer than 2 minutes.. This can be an example of your work if you wish.  Please also contact Megan if you have any questions.

      The selection panel will look at all submitted applications and contact you if they have any questions.

      We hope to be able to let you know if you have been successful by Monday 4 May.

      To download the guidelines please click here.

      To download an application form please click here.

      Check out this video of last years MHT recepients, talking about how the funding helped them…

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      Volunteer Stewards needed!

      Quay Arts is looking to grow its team of volunteer stewards! If you are able to spare a few hours a week – on a regular or ad-hoc basis – we’d love to hear from you.

      Stewards play a vital role in ensuring our galleries are always open to the public as well as welcoming key visitors.

      A typical shift is 3 hours in the morning / afternoon. Seating plus a voucher for drink & cake is provided to our stewards for each shift.

      If you’d like to join the team / know more please contact Ian Whitmore, Visual Arts Manager, Quay Arts