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We are inviting creatives to take part in Artist at Soane, a new residency for artists, architects and designers to mark the restoration of Soane’s Drawing Office.

At the heart of the museum, Soane’s Drawing Office is the earliest surviving example of a working architectural office. To mark the 200th anniversary of its installation, the space is undergoing a programme of restoration, followed by the launch of new multi-layered digital interpretation and the creation of the Museum’s first ever residency programme, Artist at Soane. 

Introducing the programme

Starting in the Spring of 2023, two residents will be hosted annually, for three months each, during the Spring (March to May) and the Autumn (September to November). In addition to working in dry materials in the Office, residents will be able to draw inspiration from the Museum’s collections, archive, library, exhibitions and education programme, related scholarship, or commercial operations. 

Residents will receive a fee and support from staff across the Museum over the three-month residency period. The residency will highlight not only the historic importance of Sir John Soane’s Museum, its archive and collections, but also its contemporary relevance and connection with artists, architects and designers practicing now. 

A view of Sir John Soane's drawing office.

Creatives working in any mediums and disciplines are encouraged to apply to Artist at Soane, with the only stipulation being that drawing is central to their practice – whether observational or conceptual. Entries will be accepted from individuals and collaborations. 

This new residency is intended to engage with a wide range of artists, architects, designers and makers at all stages of their careers, and to be understanding of their individual circumstances. 

The selection process

The entries will be considered by a prestigious panel of selectors:

  • Pablo Bronstein, Artist
  • Helen Dorey, Deputy Director and Inspectress at Sir John Soane's Museum
  • Nichola Johnson, Former Director of the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts at the University of East Anglia and Trustee of Sir John Soane’s Museum (Chair) 
  • Haroon Mirza, Artist 
  • Sarah Wigglesworth, Architect 

The selectors will be looking for a high-quality self-directing artist who will use this new opportunity to best develop their practice and who will use the residency to best enhance the work of the Museum. 

Because the Drawing Office was innovative at its time, the Museum seeks to engage with an artist practitioner who will be original in their approach to the residency. 

A view of Sir John Soane's drawing office.

The Museum is keen to engage with the resident to maximise the associated benefits and will dedicate in-house resources to ensuring that artists make the most of the experience of working in this very special organisation. 

The artist will be engaged over a pre-agreed number of days in the Museum either working on site, taking part in public engagement or educational activity or using the research facilities. 

There will be an honorarium of £1,500 per artist or collaboration, to cover materials, travel and other expenses. There will also be the possibility of an allowance for each artist on a case-by-case basis, to help cover accommodation. 

How to apply

To enter, applicants must visit and complete the online application form, including:

  • Up to 6 images of recent work 
  • A one-page CV 
  • Brief statements regarding how the residency would contribute to their practice, how they would approach the residency, etc.

Following the online selection, a shortlist of artists will be invited to take part in an interview. This will take place with the selection panel either in person at Sir John Soane’s Museum or online as required. 

It is free to enter. The deadline for submissions is 4 October 2022, 5pm BST.