Wysing Arts CentreCambridge
Wysing Arts Centre, located on the edge of the village of Bourn in south Cambridgeshire, has been at the vanguard of providing ways to support artists to make new work and reach new audiences for over twenty five years.
In 1989, Wysing Grange Farm, was purchased with the intention of developing the site into low cost studio space for visual artists. Initially known as Wysing Arts, the organisation was founded by Jenny and Terry Brooks, who are still active members of its Board of Trustees, and the artists Annie and Age Bunnetat. Together, they set about transforming its barns and outbuildings into studios and later organising occasional exhibitions and events, including an annual exhibition of kinetic sculpture in Wysing's grounds. A gallery was converted from an old hay shed and a regular programme of artistic activity began.
In 2011 Wysing was accepted into Arts Council England's National Portfolio and in the same year the organisation joined the prestigious Plus Tate Network. Wysing has also led the regional CVAN East network of visual arts organisations, artists and curators since 2009.
Since 2010 an intrinsic part of working at Wysing has the discussion, debate and contextualisation of ideas through a public talks and events programme, central to which is the contribution of a diversity of experts from neighbouring Cambridgeshire villages, from the city and University of Cambridge, and beyond. The programme expands ideas, taking them into the wider world, to be influenced by, and influence, thinking in other spheres and specialisms.
The Wysing of today operates an alternative model of working in which artists can think, debate and make, without defined outcomes and in response to individual needs. At Wysing, artists develop ideas and make new work within programmes that include residencies for artists, art writers and musicians; retreats and masterclasses; a studio programme and live/work studio space.
Wysing's gallery is used a site of experimentation, for exhibitions of work being developed and created at Wysing, and as a location for consolidating some of the ideas being explored by artists during the time they are based at the centre.
Wysing continues to build new partnerships and collaborations to further develop opportunities for artists, curators, musicians and art writers and will build new audiences for art in new ways.