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Cafe Culture: Arts Commission

(This opportunity is now closed)

An opportunity to showcase your work and practice at The Stove.

The Stove Network is looking to commission an artist/creative practitioner(s) or community group to engage creatively with 100 High Street’s award-winning Stove Cafe through our ‘Conversing Building’ project.

Cafe Culture: Arts Commission

Fee + Materials: £1,750

Conversing Building is an exhibition programme hosted in our award-winning venue, The Stove Cafe.

It brings together a variety of creative works and projects that address local issues and engage with our local community, promoting and exploring ideas related to both local and global topics.

Ranging from subjects like ecology, heritage, and local democracy, Conversing Building delves into ideas, and discussions through diverse creative mediums, including sound, textiles, print, and visual art approaches to invite and inspire conversation and interaction with everyone that walks into our doors.

About the Commission

This is an open brief for creative practitioners to apply their own creative approach to the environment.

Practitioners of all types are invited to work with the Stove’s creative department and cafe team to realise a ‘takeover’ of the cafe space. drawing their own creative interpretation into the environment.

We are open to all forms and styles, from printmakers to installation.

We encourage applicants to consider how their work may address or speak to local concerns in an open and inspirational way.


Our cafe is a busy space, and we are unable to lose out on seating spaces. Proposals must take into consideration how the work will complement the established environment of the cafe and not disrupt the day-to-day running of the enterprise.

The Stove Cafe is a place where people work, eat, chat, drink and play so do consider this with your proposal.

Proposals should consider how creative interactions with the space are sensitively balanced with the rhythm and life of the cafe and how interaction is best served within it. For example, proposals which require significant floor space are unlikely to work, as too proposals which centre on projected image/film may not be feasible due to daytime lighting obstructing the view.

Traditional exhibitions or previously exhibited work are invited however applicants must consider how the work relates to/compliment the Conversing Building projector, contributes to dialogue connected to our town centre location, and how they may go about re-imagining the work for the space in question.

Previous examples of Conversing Building projects can be found here.

Fee and Materials

The total fee and materials budget available is £1,750.

How this budget is split is subject to your proposal and will be agreed with the selected artist or project before the start of the commission, but must be inclusive of all additional costs including travel and VAT.


  • Application deadline: 5pm, 14th January 2024
  • Selection process: Week beginning 15th January 2024
  • Final selection made: 23rd January 2024
  • Installation dates Week beginning: 11th March 2024
  • Exhibition running time: 18th March – 13th April 2024 (inclusive)
  • Exhibition takedown: 15th April 2024

Application Process

  • An outline of your approach. (max 500 words). Submissions can also be made via video or audio file. If you would like to submit your approach in another format please do enquire with us as we are happy to accommodate any accessibility requirements in this regard.
  • Up to 3 examples of your work
  • A CV (or similar) outlining your experience to date

Proposals should be sent to [email protected] with the heading: Cafe Culture: Arts Commission

If you would like to speak to a member of the team to discuss your idea, please get in touch.

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