Deptford X Announces 2016 Programme


The programme for Deptford X 2016, the longest-running contemporary art festival in London, running from 23rd September to 2nd October, was announced today by Patrick Henry, Director of the festival.

For the eighteenth edition of Deptford X, a new programme structure has been introduced, that reimagines the festival whilst building on its strengths and legacy. The core programme will be a commissions platform for substantial works by five emerging artists. This is a focused programme that offers the chosen artists an exciting commission and development support, and provides the art world and the public with a talent showcase and ambitious new work that responds to the festival’s unique context.

The Platform 2016 artists are Johann Arens, Joey Holder, Manuel Mathieu, Berry Patten, and Takeshi Shiomitsu. These five artists have been selected from a shortlist of nominations by a panel of art world experts. These are Rózsa Farkas, David Mabb, Ellen Mara De Wachter, Fatos Üstek and George Vasey.

The ten-day festival will see these ambitious visual arts projects installed in a diverse range of sites and venues across Deptford, South East London. They form the core programme of the festival, named ‘Platform 2016’, which sits alongside the parallel Fringe festival.

The Deptford X Fringe will return to its original form as an open programme strand for independent projects, facilitated and supported – but not curated – by Deptford X. We are currently inviting artists to propose projects for the fringe, and will be accepting proposals from 20th June – 30th August 2016. The submission criteria are available via the website,

We are delighted that the 2016 festival is supported by Anthology as our lead sponsor, as well as receiving funding from Arts Council England and Lewisham Council. Our premises, gallery, event space and studios are generously provided by Galliard Homes.

Helen Goodier, Chair of Trustees of Deptford X said: “We are excited to welcome Patrick Henry as Director of Deptford X and to launch Deptford X's new platform for emerging artists. In doing so we aim to provide an important new opportunity for artists at a difficult stage in their careers, and to open up Deptford X to new audiences.”

Ben Allen, Project Director of the Anthology Deptford Foundry development said: “As a new property developer, Anthology is committed to doing things differently, ensuring that the communities which we develop seamlessly fit within the fabric of the existing neighbourhoods. Deptford X is about celebrating the creative hub at the heart of this thriving community and we are pleased to be a part of such a cherished festival.”

Notes for editors

 1.   About the ‘Platform 2016’ artist nominations

         Each of the 5 nominators provided Deptford X with a shortlist of 3 artists, accompanied by a supporting statement, and Deptford X has selected the final 5, one from each list, through an internal curatorial process.

         — Rózsa Farkas is Founder, Curator & Editor of Arcadia Missa, an independent research and curatorial project based in Peckham, South East London. She nominated Takeshi Shiomitsu, a Chelsea graduate who has shown at AND/OR, Block Universe, MOT Project Space, and Arcadia Missa.

      — David Mabb is Programme Leader of MFA Fine Art (Studio Practice) at Goldsmiths College, University of London. He nominated Joey Holder, who graduated from the MFA Fine Art Programme at Goldsmiths. Her recent exhibitions include Lament for Ur, with Viktor Timofeev at Karst, Plymouth and The Multiverse, with Lis Rhodes, Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge.

      — Ellen Mara De Wachter is an independent writer and curator based in London. She nominated Berry Patten, whose solo show at the Zabludowicz Collection in 2013 has been followed by exhibitions in Newcastle, Antwerp, Leeds and London.

      — Fatos Üstek is an independent curator and writer based in London. She nominated Manuel Mathieu, a Haitian-born artist graduating this year from an MFA in Fine Arts at Goldsmiths. He installed the penultimate show at Fig-2 at the ICA in 2015, and has been included in exhibitions at the Grand Palais in Paris, and MAC in Montreal.

      — George Vasey is an independent curator and writer who since 2014 has also been Curator of the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art in Sunderland. He nominated Johann Arens, a recent graduate of the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam, whose work has been included in ‘Emotional Resources’, Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art (2014) and ‘A Small Hiccup,’ Grand Union (2013). 

2.   About Deptford X: London’s Contemporary Arts Festival

Deptford X supports and offers development opportunities to artists, enabling them to produce ambitious new work for a wide range of contexts and audiences.

Deptford X is London’s longest running contemporary visual arts festival and has been experienced by over one million people since its inception in 1998, presenting more than 360 established and emerging artists across ten days of site-specific installations, group exhibitions, open studios, tours, workshops, one-off performances and events. The festival brings together around 50 diverse venues across Deptford, South East London including galleries, studios, pubs, historic churches, high street shops, cafes, libraries, the cells of an old police station, and even phone boxes.

Deptford X’s new contemporary art gallery and events space is located within the newly developed site of the old Seager Distillery: 9 Brookmill Road, Deptford SE8 4HL. The gallery and event space opened on 25th September 2015.

3.   This year’s Deptford X festival, takes place from 23 September to 2 October 2016

4.   The deadline for submissions for the Festival Fringe is 30th August 2016 (6pm). The application forms can be accessed from from the 20th June. The fringe programme will be available online at the beginning of September.