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Case Study: Chell Young

Chell Young is an emerging artist from Kilbarchan who graduated from Edinburgh College of Art in 2019 just prior to outbreak of the Covid 19 pandemic. She successfully applied for the VACMA emerging artist grant of £500 in 2021 to help cement her future as a creative practitioner.

‘Coming out of art school I had felt quite isolated from that energy of being in a studio’

Having had several opportunities to exhibit and create work on the back of her degree show including a commission opportunity at Manipulate Festival in 2021, Chell found herself feeling isolated in her practice, without the necessary facilities and community to make the work that she aspired to make.

 ‘What I wanted was to find an environment where I was surrounded by other artists… and have a link to somewhere where I wasn’t working out of my bedroom’

Chell was looking to use the VACMA funding to rent a studio space in order to have more room to make work amongst other creatives, to help further develop her practice in a nurturing and inspiring environment. After some issues in securing access and space due to Covid restrictions, Chell settled in a space in the artist-run Outline Studios in Bridgeton in the East End of Glasgow.

‘I’ve had a lot of space to play around with loads of different ideas and it’s grown different legs that I wasn’t anticipating which have been really great.’

Since having access to a studio space and creative community Chell’s practice has developed in unexpected and exciting ways. Her sculptural and video work has become more interdisciplinary, collaborating with music and theatre, and her developing creative network has allowed her to branch out in new directions.  This include creating music videos and sets for live performances for musical act Maranta through a sustained relationship with Hidden Door Festival in Edinburgh, for which she was one of their 2022 Creative Collaboration artists.

‘I wouldn’t have ever prioritised that as a part of my monthly outgoings… I feel like without it quite easily my practice would have died’

The VACMA fund has allowed Chell to continue in her career progression as an artist, maintaining her studio space and successfully sustain and grow her creative practice in unexpected ways.


Find out more about Chell and her work on her website here:

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