Local Artist Participates in Finnish Exchange

Ruth Osborne Finnish Exchange

Local artist Ruth Osborne recently participated in an exchange programme with a Finnish artist thanks to funding secured by Ards and North Down Borough Council from the British Council. The Council secured £4,000 under the Architecture and Design Biennales and Festivals Grants.

The grant covered a two-way exchange between Creative Peninsula textile/linen artist Ruth Osborne and textile/linen artist Pirjo Seddiki representing the Taidesuunnistus Festival of Design in Tampere, Finland.

The first stage of the exchange took place in April 2023 with Ruth travelling on to Tampere to facilitate workshops and an open studio demonstration. Ruth had a fantastic time and was met by a representative of the British Council who said she was a wonderful ambassador for Creative Peninsula and the Borough. She was hosted by artist Sirpa Morsky.

Pirjo is currently on her return visit to take part in Creative Peninsula and is being hosted by textile artist Jane McCann at her house and studio in Donaghadee. 

Pirjo facilitated an Artist Talk on the opening night of Creative Peninsula on 27 July at Ards Arts Centre on Colour trends/theory and an Exchange Exhibition featuring all 4 artists work is running at Ards VIC from 2 – 12 August.

A final collaborative textile piece will be produced and exhibited in Tampere in October 2023.
Speaking about the Exchange Ruth said: “This exchange has been a wonderful opportunity to build on links with Tampere, Finland that already existed within the Borough and also establish new connections for the future. For me it has been an opportunity to share my practice in new contexts. While, collaborating with Pirjo, and drawing upon the knowledge of Sirpa and Jane as our hosts, has enabled me to develop skills and ideas in new directions.”

Emily Crawford, Arts and Heritage Manager for Ards and North Down Borough Council also said: “We were delighted to be able to give Ruth the opportunity to experience the Taidesuunnistus Festival of Design in Tampere. It has also been an absolute pleasure to have Pirjo join us for our Creative Peninsula Festival this year. Her collaboration with Ruth has produced a beautiful exhibition and laid the foundations for what we hope will be a lasting partnership with Tampere.”


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