Photo: Sarah Williams
|"ZAP IS RUN AND CURATED BY THE ESTIMABLE ROSALIND DAVIS AND ANNABEL TILLEY, WITH A HUGE AMOUNT OF DISCERNMENT, ENERGY AND GUSTO." Andrew Bracey|
Zeitgeist Arts Projects was founded in 2012 by Rosalind Davis and Annabel Tilley to support ambitious artists with practical ways to sustain their practice. At the heart of the Zeitgeist philosophy are the questions: How do we survive as an artist? How do we develop and sustain a practice over the long term?
Their annual programme Show & Tell
is designed to address these questions, through a series of events including talks, seminars, art tours and exhibitions that encourage artists to develop networks, learn from other artists, engage, thrive and raise their profiles. Guest artists for their programme have included Mark Titchner
, Susan Collis
, Phoebe Unwin
, Virginia Verran
and Transition Gallery
Zeitgeist Arts Projects has emerged as a practical, vibrant, unpretentious yet critically engaged arts organisation: "Putting diversity and practice at its centre Zeitgeist Arts Projects answers a real and growing need for artists to gain valuable support and guidance, an affordable education, to be a part of an active professional, artist-led group, the opportunity to exhibit and a sense that they belong to a 'community of practice'." Graham Crowley, artist and former Professor of Painting at the RCA.
Their pioneering talk: The A-Z of Surviving as an Artist
has toured the country and is informed by Tilley and Davis' two different experiences of the art world, the joys and struggles of sustaining an arts career. The talk has been hosted by galleries such as De La Warr Pavilion and FirstSite, the Whitstable Biennale and a host of artist organisations in London, Liverpool, Cardiff and Maidstone as well as Southampton Solent University. They have also instigated online Twitter debates surrounding this question of Survival as an Artist, including at The ICA for Artlicks' second birthday. Read the resulting publication here
As curators Tilley and Davis organise exhibitions of outstanding, new, promising, mid career and established artists: Collectible (2012)
, Discernible (2013)
and The Zeitgeist Open
, an annual open competition. These large group shows are significant because they provide a snapshot of what critically engaged artists across the country are doing in their studios now. Exhibiting artists are selected to bring attention and exposure to deserving talent and the shows result in an exciting cross-fertilisation of ideas and networks, gaining critical attention from wider public and art world audiences.
"All the artists Tilley and Davis have curated share a vocabulary based on hard won expertise rather then bravura skill. Their work is true to itself, not dictated by fashion - leading rather than following. Their work is thoughtful even when it is explosive. It is emotional. It is not macho posturing."
- Ben Coode-Adams
"Flair, inspiring, can-do attitudes, elegantly curated exhibitions and an infectious will to support."
- Timothy Shepard
is a graduate from the Royal College of Art (2005) and Chelsea College of Art (2003). She has exhibited nationally and internationally in a number of commercial, public and artist-led spaces including CoExist, Phoenix Brighton and Art Gene. Her work was recently on display in the exhibition Material Matters at the Courtauld Institute (2012-2013) and she currently has a solo show at Bruce Castle Museum, a public museum in London. Other solo shows have been at The Residence Gallery (2007), John Jones Project Space and Julian Hartnoll (2009) and The Stephen Lawrence Centre (2008). Recently she has been included in group exhibitions by a number of artist/ curators: Harry Pye, Jake Clark at the Lion and Lamb Gallery, Juan Bolivar for ArtKapsule and Ben Coode-Adams and Freddie Robins for Blackwater Polytechnic. She has been selected for open submission competitions The Crash Open Salon, The Salon Art Prize, The ING Discerning Eye, the Lynn Painters Stainers Prize, The Ludlow Open and UK Young Artists Event. In 2014 she will be exhibiting in artist-led group shows in Bangkok, Australia and London. Davis is also a curator, award-winning blogger, writer, lecturer and creative consultant and recently contributed to BBC4's film Tales of Winter: The Art of Snow and Ice
. She lectures for a number of organisations including the Royal College of Art, University of the Arts, ArtQuest, University of Westminster and University of Nottingham and teaches mixed media workshops across all levels of education across the country. As a writer Davis has contributed to the Guardian
, a-n News and Magazine
. She has also led art tours for South London Art Map and the Whitechapel Gallery.
makes work inspired by the history of English painting. Shortlisted for The Jerwood Drawing Prize, she has exhibited widely including: Transition Gallery; WW Gallery; C4RD; The Salon Art Prize; Oriel Davis; Towner Art Gallery; and Fruehsorge Contemporary Drawing, Berlin. She has recently been included in projects curated by Harry Pye; and at Blackwater Polytechnic led by Ben Coode-Adams and Freddie Robins. Tilley co-founded Talk About The Work in Hastings (2006-09), which featured artists: Rose Wylie, Delaine Le Bas and Susan Collis. Annabel Tilley trained in Fine Art Painting at The University of Brighton, has an MA in literature, lives in Hastings and works from a studio in New Cross, South London. Her work is held in several private collections in the UK and USA. She lectures on professional practice for artists, has written for a-n Magazine
and has contributed to the Guardian
Based at ASC in New Cross, ZAP's Rosalind Davis and Annabel Tilley host a studio space with 8 other artists
: Graham Crowley
, Kate Murdoch
, Michaela Nettell
, Charley Peters
, Shelley Rae
, Katie Sims
, and Rachel Wilberforce
. Within this space there exist a cross-section of practices including: painting, drawing, film, installation and photography. The open plan space allows for a lively cross fertilisation of ideas as well as a support network of artists at all stages of their careers.
Project Assistant Holly Simpson
studied Fine Art at Goldsmiths, University of London, graduating in 2008. She has since returned to Goldsmiths and has recently completed a Masters in Contemporary Art Theory. Over the past five years she has been dedicated in her pursuit of a career in curation and arts management, working for international, commercial, charitable and non-profit arts organisations. Since completing her BA, Holly has worked as Managing Curator of the SassonGALLERY, a privately owned gallery space in Peckham. Throughout her time there she supported the work of graduate artists, using the project space as a playground to explore ideas and exhibit new interdisciplinary work. Since then she has worked for the Zabludowicz Collection and art consultants Artwise Curators.
: Zeitgeist Arts Projects, ASC Studios, Bond House, London SE14 6BL | EMAIL