Re-advertised Artistic Opportunity!

Raising the Curtain – Street Art Project

Deadline:  – Please note this has now closed

Who: Artists / Designers

What: Expressions of Interest are invited from artists / designers, to create a series of visual street level artworks responding to the social history of Lower St James’s Street and its surrounding neighbourhoods in Burnley.

The artworks will be semi-permanent and form part of an ongoing artist led transformation of the area into a contemporary and inclusive creative community.

Artworks will be divided in consultation / collaboration between 2 successful applicants.

The successful artists /designers will be expected to:

  • Respond to the area’s cultural and social heritage, referencing research we will provide into its past as a commercial district and centre for theatre and performance.
  • Develop executable designs that can be created directly on surfaces at street-level
  • Be open to collaboration with the other selected applicant.
  • Engage with a small number of key stakeholders at the design stage, including a selected cohort of local undergraduate art students.
  • Participate in the documentation of the project.
  • Liaise with our online team to help create digital versions of artwork for remote viewing.

The commissioning panel is interested in approaches that will:

  • Take a contemporary approach to communicating heritage.
  • Will be durable and suitable for a busy street context.
  • Show attention to detail and exceptional production values.
  • Introduce energy and vibrancy to the street, adding to the neighbourhood’s uniqueness.

Although not essential, the panel particularly welcomes expressions of interest from artists who have a demonstrable relationship to the town of Burnley or the County of Lancashire. The panel welcomes applicants at all stages of their career and practitioners representing minority ethnic groups.

Total commission value including all fees, except materials as required: £3,000.00 per selected artist.


Lower St James’s Street is one of 69 Heritage Action Zones (HAZ) across England selected to receive funding and support in a new scheme to help champion historic high Streets.

Raise the Curtain is a pilot for forthcoming artist and community led culture projects hosted by the HAZ and is part of a raft of improvements to Lower St James’s Street itself. We have a vision for the neighbourhood which is artist driven and is focused on enabling creative practice and the presentation of  artistic excellence and creative skills directly to the public.

How to Apply: 

Please send your expression of interest digitally to:

Please mark your submission Raise the Curtain followed by your first and second name in the subject line of the email.

The Expression of Interest should consist of a short CV/blog clearly demonstrating prior and relevant experience, and up to 6 examples of previous works. Format must be digital. We are not asking to see any ideas at this stage.

Applications will be assessed against the following criteria:

Quality: 40%

Experience: 30%

Add Value: 30% (local knowledge/appreciation of the area and willingness to engage in wider activity such as shadowing opportunities and interviews with students).

Closing date –  Monday 11th January 2020, 9am.

What next: The 2 selected artists will be invited to a site meeting in January after which they will be asked to work up detailed proposals prior to a second meeting with key stakeholders in Burnley prior to the works’ execution scheduled for February 2021.

The deadline for the completed commission is 1st March 2021.

The cultural programme is funded by Historic England, the National Heritage Lottery Fund and supported by Arts Council England. The programme is administered by Burnley Borough Council and is developed and delivered by the Cultural Consortia.