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Engage is the lead advocacy and training network for gallery education.

We support arts educators, organisations and artists to work together with communities in dynamic, open exchanges that give everyone the opportunity to learn and benefit from the arts.

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ARMA 2018

Engage and the Alexandra Reinhardt Memorial Award are delighted to announce that the 2018 Artist Commission will be hosted by The Turnpike, Leigh, Wigan.


The Turnpike, Leigh. Photo by Pete Carr

The Alexandra Reinhardt Memorial Award (ARMA) was established in memory of the artist Alexandra Reinhardt and is supported by the Max Reinhardt Charitable Trust. The annual award, worth £15,000, funds an artist or artists to undertake work with children and young people over approximately 10 weeks, and for the experience to inform the creation of a commissioned artwork accessible to the public. Engage is the National Association for Gallery Education, and has been working with ARMA on the programme since 2012.

In 2016 Alison Carlier’s commission entitled ‘Flourish’ was unveiled at Aspex, Portsmouth and commemorated the gallery’s ten years in the historic Vulcan Building. ‘Flourish’, a neon and sound installation, draws on the military history of the gallery’s home at Portsmouth Harbour, on the outskirts of Gunwharf Quays.

In 2015, the commission by Anne Harild, entitled ‘We Approach’, was unveiled at Bluecoat, Liverpool. In 2014 New Walk Museum and Art Gallery, Leicester worked with Maria Zahle on ‘Sails and Dogs’, a residency and commission that explored physical play, while Elpida Hadzi-Vasileva’s research into Middlesbrough’s industrial past resulted in the launch of ‘HA[SOFT]RD’ at mima, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art in 2013.

In 2018 an artist(s) will work with The Turnpike for ten weeks  to deliver a programme of engagement for young people in care, or those who have recently left the care system. This experience will inform the creation of a new semi-permanent or permanent art commission, which will be located at The Turnpike or in a nearby space accessible to the public. Overall the project aims to raise the profile and place of young people in Leigh, using art as a means to query and exchange ideas.


Helen Stalker, Director of The Turnpike, said: “It is a huge honour to have been selected to host ARMA. It comes at such an exciting time for The Turnpike as we develop a new space for the arts in the North West. Connecting our young people to the best art and the best artists is at the heart of what we do. We see the award as a major opportunity to work with an artist to create something of real impact and we can’t wait to welcome them to Leigh.”

Veronica Reinhardt, Trustee of the Max Reinhardt Charitable Trust, said: “The Award was named in memory of my sister Alexandra who needed art to help her cope with the many problems she faced in life. We are excited that The Turnpike fully embraces the many ambitions of ARMA particularly in reaching out to vulnerable young people and creating meaningful art for them. My sister would be thrilled.”

Jane Sillis, Director of Engage, said: “Engage is delighted that The Turnpike is hosting ARMA 2017. The Turnpike are committed to working closely with communities in Leigh and through ARMA young people in care will engage with an artist and contributing to the creation of a commissioned artwork. It is brilliant that the ARMA programme can contribute to this endeavour.”

The opportunity for artists to apply for ARMA Artist Commission at The Turnpike has now closed. The successful artist(s) will be announced later this year.

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