Glasgow International and the Glasgow School of Art launch new writers programme

Attribution/author:Article by: Deborah Chu

The initiative will support up-and-coming writers and critics enrolled on the Glasgow School of Art's Master of Letters in Art Writing programme, with their work to be published via The List

When contemporary art festival Glasgow International returns to spaces around the city later this month, it'll be a sign of not only our gradual re-emergence out of the shadows of the pandemic, but also of the astounding resilience that the arts community has shown during this incredibly difficult time.

As a means of bolstering the sector's recovery and ushering new talent onto the scene, Glasgow International, the Glasgow School of Art and The List are teaming up to support the emerging writers and critics currently enrolled on the Glasgow School of Art's Master of Letters in Art Writing, a studio-led, interdisciplinary postgraduate programme based in the School of Fine Art. This uniquely collaborative initiative will help connect new writers to artists and curators taking part in this year's festival, cultivate their unique talents and perspectives, support their writing with mentorship opportunities and through publication at The List.

Their writing will span previews, features and reviews of work being shown at Glasgow International, highlighting this year's dynamic and diverse programme, as well as Glasgow's pre-eminent place in the international visual arts scene. The following writers will be taking part in the mentorship scheme:

Donald Butler is an interdisciplinary artist and writer based in Glasgow. Butler's practice and research is continually informed by their experience of living with HIV and the collapsing of identity with epidemiology. His practice is an infected body, a stain of immorality, the site of contagion; it looks to viral transmission as a relational method and as a structure for the display of information.

Butler has written for The Skinny, LUX Scotland, Soft Eis and recently had his short story pamphlet Free Radicals published by Lunchtime Gallery. A collection of poems, For Barry, will be published this summer as part of DreamsTimeFree, a new publication produced by Thamesmead Arts and Culture Office (TACO). He is also the co-founder of artist project Tendency Towards, which produces exhibitions, events, and collective research.

Rachel Harris-Huffman is a multidisciplinary artist, writer, and arts administrator from Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States. Her educational background is in fine art and geography.

Rachel has worked with many arts organisations as an educator, curator, and executive board officer. Prior to coming to Glasgow, she was the Education and Outreach Coordinator for the City of Albuquerque Public Art Urban Enhancement Program where she worked with artists, schools, museums, and community groups to promote appreciation of and engagement with the arts.

Rachel's research interests include material culture, cultural patrimony, and the applications and imperatives of postcolonialism in art institutional contexts. She is currently working on three major projects: a nonfiction novel about the repatriation of human remains stolen from the Teotihuacan archaeological site in Mexico; a biographical memoir reflecting on the life and work of Scottish artist and archaeologist Annie Pirie Quibell; and a hybrid digital mapping project documenting payphone boxes around Glasgow.

Enxhi Mandija is a writer and artist and completed her undergraduate in English and History of Art at the University of Aberdeen in 2020. She was Arts Editor at The Gaudie student newspaper, and has worked as Media Assistant for the National Theatre of Scotland and the WORD Centre for Creative Writing at the University of Aberdeen. Here, she was actively involved in developing and organising the student-led, cross-artform WayWORD Festival in September 2020. She is one of the founding members of online creative platform Leopard Arts and the winner of the 2020 Literary Lights Prize, held by the Grassic Gibbon Centre and the University of Aberdeen.

She has contributed to Soft Shell, The Elphinstone Review, and her writing and illustration work has appeared on Dog Door Cultural, The Gaudie, and is forthcoming in an anthology by Sincere Corkscrew micropress. Her interdisciplinary practice explores migration, art, memory and the meeting points between languages and the visual.

Jen Martin is an artist and writer from Wester Ross, now based in Glasgow. Jen works collaboratively in film and sound, has exhibited work at the Centre for Contemporary Art Glasgow in 2019 and freelances as an editor, colourist and technician.

Siuán Ní Dhochartaigh is an artist and writer based in Glasgow. She has a cross-disciplinary practice that examines creative work and its implications on the self. Siuán studied Fine Art and Visual Culture in NCAD and her work has been published in CIRCA Art Magazine and displayed at Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin.

Ben Redhead is a writer and artist originally from Leeds, now living and studying in Glasgow, and making creative-critical work which deals with themes such as non-anthropocentric language. Two collaborative poems written with Lucie McLaughlin are forthcoming with Death of Workers Press, Glasgow, in Periodicals, Summer 2021, and three sound-pieces from their 'Scratch Poems' series are currently being hosted by Clouds and Tracks.

Megan Rudden is an artist and writer from Edinburgh, currently based in Glasgow. Through an interdisciplinary practice that moves across performance, object making, text and drawing, her work attempts to create non-linear, transhistorical narratives which consider the body as central to understanding our environment. With a background in sculpture, Megan is interested in how written words can evoke physical sensation and materiality. Her writing has been widely distributed and she has performed and exhibited at various locations across the UK, including Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester and at the back of a car park in Dundee.

Glasgow International will be taking place 11–27 June. For more information, visit

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