A man and a woman standing in a darkened art gallery, each wearing a Virtual Reality headset and holding a black controller. They are playing a game by the artist Rachel Maclean.

At the heart of Factory International sits the engine of artistic ambition and experimentation. At the festival we’ve pioneered many ways to support artists as they develop their ambitions, and with Factory International we will offer space year round for artists to stretch out, invent and evolve.

Our approach to Artist Development strives to be ambitious and inspiring, offering a wide range of opportunities locally and internationally, across artforms and scales.

Artist Development can be for all artists – emerging or established – and can help redress the balance in the sector, inventing together new possibilities, pathways and imaginations to feed artists’ ambitions.



Intro to Virtual Tools

A workshop of sitting participants, a man with blonde hair is delivering a workshop in front of a digital screen

Factory International’s Intro to Virtual Tools programme brought together 20 artists based in Greater Manchester to develop new skills, learning from artists operating at the cutting edge of technology – Team Rolfes, Khadija Raza, GLOR1a and Keiken. Workshops covered a huge range of topics, from introducing live streaming and building worlds to music, technology and Afro-futurism. The Greater Manchester artists taking part each received a £300 bursary to support their time, equipment and learning across two weekends. You can meet three of the artists who took part and find out more about their practice below.

  • Jack Jameson

    "It has opened my thinking about how I create, how the imagination of a world can now be very easily created, it doesn’t have to be a physical set."
  • Tina Ramos Ekongo

    "The workshop opened up the possibility of using these technologies to create art that is redefining the different disciplines of visual arts."
  • Jennifer Jackson

    "Getting the chance to learn from artists at the cutting edge of their practice, who are finding and developing new art forms, was a unique opportunity."
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