The Henry Rothschild Memorial Ceramic Bursary is a biannual award of £5000 to a ceramic artist resident in the UK.

Set up by Henry’s daughter shortly after his death, the Bursary also received some initial funding from Northumbria University in Newcastle, as part of their partnership with Tyne and Wear Museums. A representative from the University’s Art department sits on the panel of judges, and Bursary recipients may also be given the opportunity to use facilities at the University where appropriate.

The award winner has two years to complete a body of work or particular project funded by the Bursary.

The 2020 Rothschild Bursary

We would like to thank the seven short-listed candidates who attended the Zoom interview on 25th November 2020: Aphra O’Connor, Chloe Monks, Elena Gileva, Mella Shaw, Helen Johannesson, Isobel Wilkinson/Jez Anderson (joint application), and Luke Fuller.

The judges are aware of how difficult it has been for makers this year, and the task of choosing just one candidate from so many high-quality applications has not been an easy one. However, we are delighted to announce that this year’s winner is Mella Shaw.

Read an outline about Mella and her project.

The 5th Rothschild Bursary will be awarded in 2023

The deadline for applications is September 30th 2023, with interviews for those short-listed to take place the following November.

Check this page or Instagram for further updates.

Application criteria

Henry with Ronald PileHenry Rothschild had a reputation for supporting young emerging artists, but he was equally committed to the continuing development of an artist’s career.

For each round of the bursary we invite applications from all practitioners who work with clay and who have been out of full-time training for a period of up to five years. Applications are also invited from those with an established practice but without formal education or qualifications. Note that there are no applicant age restrictions.

The underlying aim of the Bursary is to give an artist the opportunity to develop their practice in ways in which they would not otherwise have the time or resources to do, enabling them to pursue new creative directions and ways of working.

The judging panel will want to a see a proposal that demonstrates a clear vision for a new direction in the work and/or development of current work.

NB: Please be aware that we are unlikely to fund the establishment of a first studio, or the initial cost of studio equipment unless it forms an integral part of the proposal.

The Bursary is not available for the funding of formal education courses, or for selling/promotional activities.

See details of the Bursary’s four previous winners.

Alison Cooke (Bursary winner 2016) writes:

The Bursary application process was straight forward. After being shortlisted I was invited to an interview at the Shipley Gallery. I was given the opportunity to choose and handle a piece from the Rothschild Ceramic Collection to talk about to the panel, before talking about my work and what I would do with the bursary. Although I was nervous, the panel were friendly and relaxed.”

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