Lift the Lid Project

Project Update – Summer 2018

It has been a busy summer and here we look back at what has been achieved.

In July, Project Manager Sarah went to meet up with the selection panel at Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth.

The selection panel, pictured below, is:

  • Professor Stephen Foster of the John Hansard Gallery, Southampton
  • Jo Bushnell of Aspex Gallery, Portsmouth,
  • Independent curator, Lucy Day of A Woman’s Place project CIC
  • Sarah Girling, Lift the Lid Project Manager
  • Visual Arts Project Manager, Georgia Newman of Quay Arts, Newport


We discussed the artists we are approaching for the commissions in East Cowes, Newport and Totland. Watch this space!

We also saw the first artists commission completed in Ventnor in partnership with Ventnor Exchange.

A large mural affectionately named ‘The Ventnor Giant’ was sprayed onto the side of a wall in Ventnor, by the artist Phlegm and was revealed during the Ventnor Fringe. We have been asking people to share their #VentnorGiantSelfies on Instagram and Twitter. This artwork has had some great comments made about it and has been viewed on Social Media by thousands of people. StreetArt.Today also named it one of the best murals in the world in August 2018. Ventnor Exchange have written a report (September 2018) highlighting some key statistics.

See our blog post to find out more.

Photograph by Julian Winslow

Our Creative Apprentice, Jack Barnes, joined the Lift the Lid team, and is working with Ventnor Exchange and Quay Arts.

Jack will be telling us all about himself and his experience as a creative apprentice so far in the next blog.

Community Engagement and young people’s involvement is starting soon.

Our creative apprentice, Jack Barnes and Quay Art’s Jacqui Cusack, along with project manager Sarah met with Ventnor Exchange‘s Jack Whitewood and Mhairi Macaulay and Ventnor Town Council ‘s Matt Hitt, about an application to the Heritage Lottery Fund. Again, this is a work in progress and there will be things to report in the future.


Activity also included the launch of the 2018 Mardi Gras in Ryde, organised by The New Carnival Company, and hosted by Ryde School. This is a hugely successful event, and so much more than a one-off happening due to the partnership between many arts organisations, schools and community groups. Look out for 2019s Mardi Gras focused on the Isle of Wight as a Biosphere Reserve.

Sarah has been travelling around the Island meeting lots of different people. And the next stage of the artists commissions is in progress now with artists completing their Research and Development stage. So this means visits to East Cowes, Totland and Newport, meeting local historians and our project partners.

The next thing to organise and take place is the Cultural Expo 2018 for teachers., on Tuesday 9 October at Quay Arts, from 4 – 6pm

This is the second Cultural Expo brought to you by the CEP and is building on the success of the last one (held July 2017). Teachers will have the opportunity to meet Island-based cultural organisations to find out what they can offer to schools. Additionally we will be launching our ‘Lift the Lid on Arts Award‘ offer, supported by local artists Ian Whitmore and Hannah George, and encouraging schools to sign up as a ‘Lift the Lid on Artsmark‘ school, fully supported by Lift the Lid and Artswork. There will be a blog post highlighting the event in the near future.

You can book your tickets with this link.

Teachers can keep in touch through our Facebook page.

There is so much more to come, so please do check back with us!

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