VACMA Angus November 2020 Recipients Announced


25th November 2020

ANGUSalive is delighted to announce the 3 recipients of the November 2020 Visual Artist and Craft Makers Awards Angus Angus (VACMA: Angus). The award winners are jewellery designers and makers, Christina Vernon and Rose Brodie, and Jeni Reid, photographer and visual artist.

Established by Creative Scotland, VACMA is a programme of small grants delivered with a range of local authorities, charitable trusts and art agencies across Scotland to support visual artists and craft makers in their creative and professional development. In Angus, the awards are hosted by ANGUSalive and delivered in partnership with Angus Council and Creative Scotland.

Across Scotland VACMA can be a crucial transition point – for both emerging and established artists and makers. The awards provide a valuable opportunity for practitioners to undertake specific projects, and to develop and advance their creative practice in ways they may not otherwise have been able to do.

Stephen Palmer, Visual Arts Officer at Creative Scotland who co-ordinates VACMA said, “Through working in partnerships across Scotland the VACMA bursaries are helping artists and makers focus on their development. Angus is new to the scheme so it is good to see the demand and the ambitions of local artists and makers. Though travel and courses are not possible at the moment due to COVID-19, it is good to see artists getting support to experiment and develop their practices in new ways.”

Gill Ross, ANGUSalive’s Visual Arts Lead said “With the impacts of COVID-19, funding is especially crucial for our creative practitioners across Angus. We’re delighted to be able to support artists and craftmakers to develop their creative practices by working in partnership with Creative Scotland and Angus Council. It is also wonderful to build relationships with visual artists and craft makers across Angus and help their creativity thrive.”

VACMA bursary winner Christina Vernon is a jewellery designer and enameller from Arbroath. Coastal and harbour areas in Angus provide Christina with an endless amount of inspiration in the shapes, textures and colours which she echoes in her work.

VACMA will provide Christina with the opportunity to embolden her approach by directly melting down and forming silver to learn about the properties of this material, which is fundamental to her practice.

Christina said “The VACMA fund is going to help me to purchase the tools I need to melt and form my own sheet and wire, something that I’ve not had easy access to since leaving art college. I am very grateful for this bursary as it will help me to develop and improve my skills as a jeweller.”

Rose Brodie is jeweller from Burnside of Duntrune, who designs, makes and exhibits work in precious and semi-precious materials. Her main source of inspiration comes from the rural Angus environment, with narrative as a continuing theme in her etched and illustrative jewellery. Many of her pieces have a strong feeling of story, often involving the lives and journeys of animals.

VACMA will enable Rose to extend and diversify her practice to incorporate elements colour in her exploration of enamelling techniques. Enamelling is the complex process of fusing powered glass into the surface of metal in layered glazes. The VACMA grant will enable Rose to purchase a kiln and necessary equipment to give a painterly quality to her illustrative pieces.

Rose said “I’m delighted to be receiving this Visual Art and Craft Maker Award. This Award will give me the opportunity to learn about enamelling techniques, and I’m excited to be able to explore new ways to bring colour into my jewellery.”

Jeni Reid is a photographer and visual artist with a background in social work specialising in mental health. Around the year 2000, Jeni was diagnosed with ME/CFS and switched focus to draw on her existing skills as a photographer and craft maker. Although Jeni is disabled by her condition, much of her recovery stems from her ability to engage with creative process. This has helped Jeni make sense of her changed life and to find the beauty in it, something she is keen to develop and share with others.

Jeni has been working with cyanotype techniques and her VACMA grant will enable her to develop this further by working with fabric and patchwork. Cyanotypes use easily found materials and can be large or small scale, simple or complicated. For Jeni, the process is magical. She can work with the sunlight, shadows and serendipity for results reflecting her environment, or control the exposure using a UV light to give her a greater say in the outcome. The process works well on fabric and as an artist who likes to inhabit the space where art and craft meet, this is what Jeni intends to take further.

Jeni said " I'm really pleased to be allocated funding from VACMA, it will allow me to buy important equipment and provide me with some vital time and space with which to develop my project."

ANGUSalive is delighted to be able to support visual artist and craft makers at all stages in their creative practices in partnership with Creative Scotland and Angus Council. The next round of VACMA: Angus funding will be open until 2 February 2021. More information about the VACMA Angus Awards can be found at


ANGUSalive (SC046133) is the culture, sport and leisure trust for the county of Angus and has been operating since December 2015.

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