Bruntwood’s new Platform for digital arts

    News, Leeds

    Bruntwood's new development in Leeds city centre is to showcase the work and talent of the city region’s best digital media artists.

    The 120,000 sq ft 13-storey Platform building launches in November 2017 and is where the three-floor Leeds tech incubator will be located. Providing workspace for more than 1,000 people, it will enable entrepreneurs, tech start-ups and second stage businesses to thrive in a like-minded community, to collaborate and generate new ideas and grow within the building.

    Bruntwood is installing an LCD media wall in the building’s reception area and is looking to commission a digital installation to be shown as part of the launch and to be played until the end of the year.

    As part of its commitment to Leeds’ Capital of Culture bid 2023, Bruntwood, which has partnerships with Leeds Beckett School of Art and West Yorkshire Playhouse, is creating opportunities for local artists to exhibit their work. The UK’s largest mural, Athena Rising, by Yorkshire’s Nomad Clan was recently unveiled on one side of the Platform building.

    Now, artists working with photography, video and animation are being invited to submit their ideas for consideration. They are encouraged to be adventurous and innovative in their ideas, with the possibility of incorporating interactive elements to the work - including live data, sensors or sound.

    The media wall is made up of 24 55-inch screens in a 12 high x 2 wide configuration, measuring 9 metres high by 2.4 metres wide.

    Craig Burrow, Director of Leeds at Bruntwood, said: “Platform will have a focus on tech and creative businesses and the digital wall in the reception is a great way to showcase digital talent within the city. Bruntwood is a long-term supporter of the arts so we're passionate about supporting existing and emerging talent across the region and we also think it will create a vibrant and thought-provoking arrival for our customers and visitors to the building.

    “Working with Leeds BID and East Street Arts, Platform has already become a canvas for artists with Nomad Clan’s Athena Rising on the side of the building really helping the building to stand out and bring something extra to the local community.

    “We’re very open to suggestions for the digital space and we’re keen to explore things we might not ordinarily consider or know about.

    “Bruntwood works to put original artwork into its buildings and has long standing relationships with regional educational establishments to provide students with space to display their work, as well as working with well-known established artists. We are also backing the 2023 Leeds Capital of Culture bid to further improve the profile of arts in the city.”

    The opening installation will be followed by a host of new media artworks and exhibitions from emerging and established local artists and reflects Bruntwood’s long-running support of the arts.

    Simon Bushell, Bruntwood’s arts co-ordinator, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for new or established artists to create and display their work in this city centre landmark development. We are looking initially for new work, developed in response to both the brief, and to the very specific array of screens at Platform.

    “The brief is under development and will be released to the successful applicant at the earliest opportunity, but it’s a space that will need further reanimation so we are hoping to unearth some other great ideas for future use.”

    With the screens located in the main entrance to Platform any work shown will be visible to all members of the public. The commission is open to artists aged 18 and above.

    To be considered, applicants should submit a CV and a brief statement up to 500 words, providing details of their previous work and an outline of their initial ideas for the Platform digital screen. Links to Vimeo, YouTube, or individual’s websites can also be included. The successful applicant will receive a paid commission to create the artwork which needs to be installed in October 2017 ahead of the building launch.

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