Past Project 2016 2017 2018

Lifeboat is a year-long studio residency and peer mentoring and career development award for MA postgraduates from University of the Arts London.  The artists selected for the 2018 award are Sabrina FullerDavide MeneghelloMētra Saberova and Jojo Taylor

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The Award

The Lifeboat award provided:

  • A fully funded shared studio split between four selected artists for a year, from February 2018 – February 2019 in ACAVA’s Limehouse Studios
  • A shared £1,800 award to establish a peer mentoring group with their selected studio mates and an extended network of up to 8 other artists
  • X 6 one to one mentoring sessions over the course of the year with a respected artist, gallerist or other art world professional
  • Promotion of activities through Artquest and partners’ newsletters and social media channels

The 2018 Selected Studio Artists

Sabrina Fuller is interested in how groups and individuals respond and react to society’s expectations: how objectification and exclusion from mainstream society can give license to chart other ways of being, and how a classification as Other allows a freedom to develop the language of difference and form unlikely alliances. Relationships – developed through a practice of collaborative working and using techniques of verbatim theatre and participation – are fundamental to her language of difference: She uses sound and time to open the possibility of a more physical encounter with her work, while place offers an amalgam of metaphor and context throughout, with its pull on what we can know and who we can be. Fuller investigates the construction of subjectivities and the border between self-image and self-presentation – the internal and the external – using a range of tools including still and moving image, voice, sound and the written word.

Sabrina Fuller, Away, 2017, stereo sound recording 4 minutes 35 seconds

Sabrina Fuller, Part of Something Bigger, 2017, single channel HD video, 4 minutes 33 seconds.

Davide Meneghello’s process-based practice explores social, political and historical ideas through photography and installation. Focusing on the forgotten, lost, discarded, infinite materiality of images, text and objects of a pre-digital era, his practice look back at the past to re-imagine and consider elements relevant for the present. His works navigate a broad spectrum of interest, from personal histories to macro narratives, to the representation of queer/homo identity in public archive. Through his projects Meneghello aims to explore and pose questions about political idealism, representation and subjectivity and re-interpret in a loose and fragmented way, tales and narrative that have defined our contemporary social history. His concept-driven research has been focused on appropriation and re-contextualization of archival materials and vernacular photographs, as in the use of old-fashion devices and their nostalgic materiality to question and re-position contemporary phenomena in a new and unstable lineage. The merging of the socio-historical background and the parallel research on material and process is at the core of his artistic focus.

Mētra Saberova builds a performative narrative based on her own orchestrated experience of medical operations in order to encourage discussion about the social, cultural and political construction of women. Sterilization in Thailand, hymenoplasty in Poland and IVF consultations in Bulgaria create an ongoing thread of mother-drag that plunges into deconstruction of societal gender expectations and results in comical animated videos showcasing of the high technology of the operations versus the low triviality of the experiences themselves. Mētra continues to actively participate in contributing to the rising feminist consciousness in Latvia and is an avid supporter of the LGBTI+ rights.

Jojo Taylor  is a multi-disciplinary artist currently predominately working in performance, sound and film. The main focus of her research is altered states of consciousness, including hallucinations, out of body experiences, hysterics, and grief. Her work is shaped by the interviews and stories she collects as she re-imagines the intense emotions within her practice. Her work attempts to magnify the sometimes bizarre nature of different events in a fragmented narrative, often possessing a dreamscape quality. Sound plays a major role in her practice. She composes sound designs, melodies, uses voiceovers, acquires sounds, writes lyrics, uses looping pedals and ‘plays’ objects such as water in wine glasses and body parts.  Jojo is interested in the psychological impact of sound and attempts to harness its affective qualities within her work. A common link and driving force in her practice is an obsession with keeping things alive by uncovering, resurrecting or immortalising them, whether that involves memories, environments or stories. Jojo is interested in unusual aspects of a building or location, e.g. playing sound pieces within a stairwell to transform the space. She recognises that sometimes sound is more visual than something which is meant to be looked at.

The Peer Mentoring Group

The studio artists worked with an extended peer mentoring group of practitioners, meeting monthly to give support and critical feedback on each others practices. The artists participating in this group are Daria Blum, Sean Burns, Krasimira Butseva, Sarah Carne, Andrew Rickett, Madeleine Lohrum, Mark Goldby and Matthew Nightingale. Since the end of the award this group of artists have continued meeting under the name BLUNTBLUNTInvisibleMaterialwriteup v.4jun

Closing Event

An event took place to mark the end of the 2018 Lifeboat residency on Tuesday 26th March at London College of Communication. The document below presents the evening proceedings.

Previous Awards

In previous years the Lifeboat award provided a shared studio and a series of studio visits/group crits from curators and gallerists coordinated by a studio mentor. You can read about the experiences of past Life Boat awardees here.

2016: Awarded artists were Rosemary Cronin, Libby Heaney, Roshana Rubin Mayhew, Verity Slade.  The studio mentor was curator Lucy Day who arranged visits from curator/gallerists Cathy Lomax and Caroll Fletcher. In 2016 the award was generously supported by UAL’s Postgraduate Community. 

You can read an interview with Rosmary Cronin here and listen to Roshana Rubin Mayhew and Vertiy Slade talk about their experiences below:

2014: Selected artists were Alex Burgess, Laura Fowle, Georgia Gendall, Sarah Roberts. The studio mentor was Ceri Hand who organised studio visits from independent curator Ben Borthwick, curator and writer George Vasey and  curator, writer and editor Francesca Gavin.

2013: Artists Brigitte Mierau, Rebecca Moss, Liam Magee, Joe Twinn were selected for the award. Their studio mentor was Louisa Martin who brought in Attilia Fattori Franchini, Lucy Day and Robin Klassnik of Matts Gallery.

2012: Conall McAteer, Henk Geiskens, Isabelle Gressell, Michael McManus were selected for the award. The studio mentor this year was Sarah Rowles who arranged visits from Soraya Rodrigues and Matt Roberts.


To be eligible to apply for this residency artists must

  • Have an fine art based practice working in any media
  • Have completed an MA (or MFA) course at one of UAL’s colleges in 2017
  • Not be enrolled in a full or part time course of study at any level during the course of the residency
  • Have permission to live and work in the UK (we are unable to support visa applications)

This programme is funded by UAL’s ArtsTemps programme, and managed by Artquest in partnership with ACAVA.