PoArtry is an ongoing annual collaboration project that invites poets and artists to work with each other to inspire new work.
The project is the brainchild of Rick Sanders, aka Willis the Poet and is now in its fifth year of exhibiting successful mash-ups of visual art and poetry. In previous years, these have been physical exhibitions in galleries and art spaces. For 2021, Rick has decided to host the exhibition on-line, to experiment with this continually developing project and to broaden the potential for participation.
The concept is a simple one. Artists and poets are randomly paired together by names drawn from a hat. Each pair then has 3 months to work together to create new work inspired by each other’s existing portfolios.
Each pair must produce 2 new pieces of work
– 1 new piece of artwork and 1 new poem.
The exhibition then shows 4 pieces in total from each pairing; the new poem with the existing artwork and the new artwork with the existing poem.
All artforms are accepted. In the past exhibitions have included sculpture, photography, video, traditional 2D artwork, printing and just about everything else in between! Poems are accepted in a written format.
As 2021 will be a digital exhibition, all artwork will be photographed and a digital copy submitted for the website. All poems will be submitted via Word.doc
Excited by what you’ve seen so far? Want to get involved? Well, here’s how to do just that.
Complete the application form here on the website.
PoArtry 2021 is open to all. If you identify as a poet or an artist, then you are welcome to get involved.
The cost to take part in the project is £10 per person. This is a flat fee and all proceeds go to the set up and running of PoArtry 2021. This year we are offering a number of free spaces for artists and poets to get involved who would otherwise not be able to afford the participation fee. If you would like to take part for free, please select the option on the application form. Please do not tick this option if you can afford to pay the £10 – I trust people to be honest with themselves about paying to take part and I want to make this project accessible to those that otherwise would not be able to get involved.
Once registered, your name will go into the hat for the draw, where you will be paired with your artist or poet. As the project is a digital one this year, participation spaces have been increased to allow more people to take part, but please be aware that there is still a limit to the number of participants, so apply early to avoid disappointment.
Once paired up, we will ask you to make the payment and then you are officially ready to go! The rest is up to you and your creative partner to do whatever inspires you and we look forward to seeing the amazing results come in.
If you missed out on previous PoArtry exhibitions, here’s a copy of the exhibition guide from PoArtry 2020. We hope it inspires you to get involved…
PoArtry is a great way to push through your own boundaries and get excited about art and artists that you might not come across otherwise. It's super fun, super chilled, and a brilliant challenge!
- Ben Moore (Poet)
PoArtry was not only a really refreshing way of finding collaboration across disciplines, it was also the first time that my work was published anywhere. Managing to mix an innovative way of working with an opportunity to offer exposure to emerging artists is no mean feat and I thoroughly enjoyed myself throughout!
- Tom Allsopp (Poet)
PoArtry has been an incredible experience for me on the two occasions that I have taken part.
As a professional artist I have certain creative themes that I tend to follow, along with set commission requests.
The PoArtry creative process made me think completely differently from my normal path and actually became a ‘eureka’ moment with me trying larger scale work and different styles.
Both of my PoArtry projects engaged me with two incredibly talented and very lovely people.
The exhibitions of completed works are extremely professional in curation and presentation.
Overall a fantastic idea and I would highly recommend anyone to give it a go.
- Kirk Andrews (Artist)
PoArtry was a wonderful experience for me to take part in, both personally and professionally, as a poet and artist. The creative challenge of working with someone in a different discipline was both educational and rewarding. The exhibition was a memorable event for me, not just to have my work included but a celebration of the power of collaborative work.
- Jason Conway (Poet)
Being involved in PoArtry with Rick on two occasions now has presented some really exciting opportunities to meet new creatives and exhibit among such an eclectic range of images and words. The collaborations between the poets and artists can work on so many different levels, and produce unexpected results, but this is the exactly the joy of the challenge.
- Dawn Jutton (Poet / Artist)
My ambition has always been to promote a local thriving arts community and PoArtry provided an excellent opportunity to collaborate with other creatives and organisations. The format proved very popular and the quality of the work in the resulting exhibition was excellent. The whole project was handled professionally by Rick and the I can see PoArtry going from strength to strength.
- Jackie Fellows (Artist)
A big thank you to all those artists and poets involved in PoArtry over the past 4 years. Without your input and inspiration PoArtry 2021 would not be possible.
Thank you to Holly O’Meara for creating this beautiful website. You can check out Holly’s creativity and all-round brilliance here at CraftyBun Studio
Thank you to Simon Meddings at Simon Meddings Associates for his input into the running of a digital exhibition and for providing the beautiful e-book of the PoArtry 2020 exhibition guide.
Check out his amazing gallery space in Stourbridge called General Office