Formerly Head of Exhibitions at the award-winning Jupiter Artland Foundation his previous role, based just outside of Edinburgh, saw him commission work by some of the world’s foremost contemporary artists. John co-curated and produced permanent outdoor commissions at Jupiter Artland, and established a temporary commissions programme to support the production of outdoor work for emerging artists.
He is joining Humber Street Gallery at a pivotal time – his appointment comes as Arts Council England invests £125,000 into the contemporary art space through the Grants for the Arts funding programme.
The gallery opened last year as a part of the Hull 2017 programme and was originally intended to be a pop-up contemporary art space. Following a series of well-received exhibitions throughout 2017 and the success of Hull’s City of Culture year, the plan is build the gallery’s reputation for contemporary, thought-provoking work, adding to Hull’s status as a centre for high quality visual arts.
John is developing a long-term plan for the gallery, working alongside his team of Kate West, Louis Jones, David Cleary, Clare Holdstock and Kane Blyth as well as Hull 2017 joint CEOs Katy Fuller and Emma Morris.
John Heffernan said: “Humber Street Gallery has established itself as an increasingly significant space for contemporary art and I am looking forward to working with the team to develop the programme of exhibitions and projects in 2018 and beyond. We will be announcing more details about upcoming shows over the next few months. I am also very keen to increase the gallery’s links with local artists and organisations as well as build its reputation and profile throughout the region and around the country.”
Emma Morris, Executive Director and joint CEO, Hull 2017, said: “It is fantastic news that Arts Council England are investing in Hull and this important art space for the city, Yorkshire and the North. It underlines the commitment of funding partners to help ensure a cultural legacy following the massive success of Hull’s City of Culture year.”
Pete Massey, Director North, Arts Council England said: “I’m delighted that John Heffernan is joining Humber Street Gallery and I look forward to seeing him build on the great success the gallery enjoyed during 2017.
“The Arts Council is committed to continuing to invest in Hull’s cultural ambitions to help sustain a legacy from UK City of Culture and our new National Lottery award of £125,000 to the gallery is a reflection of that. Since 2015, the value of awards through our National Lottery funded Grants for the Arts programme in the city has gone up by over 300% and for the next four years from April we’ll be increasing our national portfolio investment to £9,009,740.”
Find out more about Humber Street Gallery’s current shows: Richie Culver’s No one knows me like Dawn from the Jobcentre and Tim Noble and Sue Webster’s Forever. Both exhibitions are open until 27 May 2018 and are free to visit.