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Visual Arts South West: Dorset Forum

Tuesday 07 June 11 - 12.30

On zoom

b-side is hosting the next Dorset Visual Arts South West Forum.

VASW invites visual arts communities living and working within or in the surrounding areas of Dorset, to attend a meeting dedicated to their local context.

Our region is vast and diverse, and the practices, activities, and networks vary wherever you go. These meetings are intended as forums to openly discuss and understand local priorities for sector support. This year we are focusing on the cost of living crisis and the removal of pandemic restrictions, and we want to know how these affect you and those in your local area

Each meeting will be moderated by a host from your area who will bring an understanding of the nuances of its unique challenges and strengths. The conversation will inform VASW’s future sector support work, and we will share our findings and how we intend to address them.

About the hosts

Rocca Holly-Nambi is the Director of b-side, an international arts organisation and festival based on the Isle of Portland. Prior to this, Holly-Nambi was the British Council’s Head of Arts East Africa, and subsequently Director of Arts Sub-Saharan Africa. Holly-Nambi co-founded 32° East | Ugandan Arts Trust, a center for contemporary art in Kampala, Uganda; and KLA ART, Kampala’s biennial public art festival. She has delivered artistic and curatorial projects for the Edinburgh International Art Festival, Glasgow International Festival, and the Mela Festival of World Music and Dance. Holly-Nambi received an MA in Contemporary Art Theory at Edinburgh College of Art and is undertaking a practice-based PhD in Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London, on Queer Abstraction in Kenya and Uganda. Holly-Nambi lives and works on the Isle of Portland, UK.

Amanda Wallwork is an artist and curator based in Dorset. She has been a long term advocate for the visual arts in the region, where her approach has always been’ if it doesn’t exist create it’. A founding member of VASW, Wallwork was key in setting up and running the exhibition and project space at Sherborne House, was founder of Big Picture visual arts advocacy group, and is a co-founder of b-side .

Wallwork combines her role as Co-Artistic Director and Curator for b-side with her own practice and is currently in receipt of an Arts Council Developing Your Practice award where she is exploring how her gallery and studio based work with environmental based concepts and ‘seeing the unseen’ can be applied to more public and outdoor contexts.


In response to feedback from the previous VASW forums, this year we are pleased to offer small bursaries to artists wishing to attend and have their voices heard. We encourage artists with limited financial resources, who may otherwise struggle to attend, to apply. Places are limited to 3 per forum, so please do consider if this is a particularly helpful resource for you. A fee of £30 can be invoiced to VASW after the event, we are operating this on a first come, first served basis. To secure a place, email with your name and region you wish to attend.


This meeting will be hosted online, using Zoom and live captioned with

The hosts will follow gentle online meeting practice:

  • Participants can choose for themselves whether they feel comfortable turning their camera on.
  • To minimise background noise, microphones will only be kept on at the time of speaking.
  • Participants can join the conversation by speaking and typing.
  • An outline of what will take place during the meeting (including break times) and any presentation materials (if applicable) will be provided in advance.
  • A meeting recording, a computer generated transcript and the contents of the associated text-based chat will be available for all participants after the meeting upon request.

If you have any specific access needs that you would like to discuss with us, please contact the VASW team at and we will do our best to support you with your requirements

About Visual Arts South West

Visual Arts South West is a sector support organisation. Our Mission is to advocate for visual arts and enable the visual arts sector to thrive in South West England.

Our core aims are to:

  • Raise the visibility of the South West's visual arts sector, both in the region and nationally
  • Advocate for diverse perspectives in our region
  • Address significant structural and systemic issues facing the sector
  • Develop a more resilient visual arts sector

We are an independent organisation part of the national Contemporary Visual Arts Network and based at Spike Island as part of their National Portfolio Organisation funded by the Arts Council England.


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