Arts Derbyshire


QUAD, Derby is one of 5 organisations and artists shortlisted for £110,000 prize

QUAD, Derby is one of 5 organisations and artists shortlisted for £110,000 prize

Freelands Award 2023 announced: five organisations and artists shortlisted


QUAD Derby has been announced as one of five visual arts organisations and women artists under consideration for the eighth Freelands Award. Founded in 2016, the annual prize enables a UK arts organisation to present an exhibition, including significant new work, by a mid-career woman artist who may not yet have received the acclaim or public recognition that her work deserves.

The organisations and artists shortlisted for the Freelands Award 2023 are:

Camden Art Centre and Ain Bailey
and Imogen Stidworthy
Goldsmiths CCA
and Christina Mackie
and Becky Beasley
Whitechapel Gallery
and Joy Gregory


Five organisations and artists from across the UK are in contention for the prize of £110,000, awarded to an exhibition which will take place in the next three years. The award includes an allocated £30,000 fee for the winning artist. The four runner-up organisations will also each receive £10,000 towards their programmes.

The winner of the Freelands Award 2023 will be announced on 29 November 2023 following selection by a jury including Elisabeth Murdoch (Founder and Chair, Freelands Foundation), writer Olivia Laing, curator Elinor Morgan (Artistic Director, MIMA) and artist Ingrid Pollard (winner of the Freelands Award 2020).


QUAD, Derby, is shortlisted for a solo exhibition with Becky Beasley (b. 1975, Portsmouth, UK) in 2025–6, the artist’s most ambitious to date. A large-scale linoleum floor work will run across six ‘chapters’ that present sculpture, photography, ceramics, video and an installation speculating on the cultural implications of Beasley’s statistical life expectancy (54 years) as an independent autistic adult.


Becky Beasley said: “As a late-diagnosis autistic female artist and keen advocate for better understanding of neurodiversity in the arts, this nomination offers an ideal platform to highlight the joys of being a bit different, of not fitting in, of being weird, queer…and of the intersectional obstacles both I- and so many others- experience each day. The opportunity to take up public space and contribute positively and progressively to culture is the greatest privilege and my deepest joy.”

Peter Bonnell, QUAD Arts Programme Manager, said: “QUAD is thrilled to have been shortlisted for the Freelands Award this year. We are equally thrilled to be working with and supporting Becky Beasley – a singular artist of such high calibre. From my personal viewpoint as an autistic leader in the creative sector, it is also equally important to support artists who identify as neurodivergent – such as Becky.”

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