Edinburgh Art Festival Takes New Approach for 2020

Like other art organisations, the Edinburgh Art Festival (EAF) had to cancel their 2020 plans. As the Capital begins to emerge from lockdown, EAF has invited ten artists from previous festival editions to mark the dates of what would have been their 2020 festival (30 July – 30 August).

These artists are Ruth Ewan; Ellie Harrison; Tam Joseph; Calvin Z Laing; Peter Liversidge; Tamara MacArthur; Rosalind Nashashibi; Rae-Yen Song; Shannon Te Ao; and Hanna Tuulikki who will each present work as part of this August offering.

The selection includes online screenings and live performances, available via the festival website from the 30th July as well as a small number of projects appearing in public sites around the city and has been made possible thanks to the support of The Scottish Government Expo Fund and EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate. 

Sorcha Carey, Director, Edinburgh Art Festival said, “It is hard to imagine an Edinburgh without festivals this summer. We, along with our colleagues in the August festivals, will miss welcoming artists to the city this year and the opportunity to engage with audiences from Edinburgh and around the world – not least because, at a time of such significant global change, art offers a vitally important space for collective reflection, and to imagine new possibilities. 

I would like to thank all the artists who have so generously agreed to contribute a response to our August offering, and have risen creatively to the challenges of presenting work despite the ongoing restrictions. We very much look forward to being back next year, and in the meantime we are sending a hello from Edinburgh to friends across the city and around the world.”

Despite the cancellation of the festival this year, EAF can confirm thatPlatform, the festival’s annual showcase supporting artists in the early stages of their careers to make and present new work, returns with a physical exhibition in the Autumn. 

Selected from an open call by artist Ruth Ewan, and curator Sophia Hao, (Cooper Gallery, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design), four artists based in Scotland – Rabindranath Bhose, Mark Bleakley, Rhona Jack and Susannah Stark – have been selected to take part, with further details being released later in the coming weeks.

Platform: 2020 is made possible thanks to the PLACE Programme, a partnership between Edinburgh Festivals, Scottish Government, City of Edinburgh Council and Creative Scotland.

EAF is pleased to also support the Black Lives Matter Mural Trail – a new public trail of artworks by Scottish BAME artists in solidarity with Black Lives Matter, led by creative producer Wezi Mhura. More details will be announced on the festival website shortly.

EAF digital work is presented from 30th July via their website and via social channels FB, Twitter and Instagram.

EAF is looking to the future with optimism with dates already in the diary to return next year from 29 Jul to 29 Aug 2021.

Irene Brow

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