Could you be our new Board Member?

Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop is seeking new board members to commence in the next 6 months.

ESW has a big impact on new and established artists, who are supported through subsidised studios, specialist workspaces and equipment, international residencies and exchanges, events and exhibitions, employment, tutoring, mentoring and our research programme.

As an open access workshop we provide the opportunity to access specialist workspaces and a community of practice for a wide range of people.

We have strong public engagement through a rich variety of courses, workshops, events, talks and exhibitions, and we run a dedicated learning programme which supports primary 5 pupils from two local schools.

If you feel you can help increase ESW’s impact and wish to support our vision to provide the best environment in which to support artists, and to contribute to the development of critical thinking and creative learning, we want to hear from you.

If you have some experience of being on a Board or serving on a Committee, that would be great, but the key requirement is an interest in our work and in taking ESW forward, plus a real commitment to getting involved. Don’t be put off if you have not been much involved in governance before – we shall ensure you quickly get up to speed.

We are particularly interested, at this point, in attracting interest from practising artists, who we believe have much to offer our community. We very much welcome applications from individuals from groups underrepresented in our sector. Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop strives to be an equal opportunities employer and is committed to increasing diversity within our board, staff team, programme and our audiences.

We are encouraging notes of interest from now until the deadline which is 9am on Monday 17 August 2020.

PDF version of call for Board Members


Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop (ESW) is a specialist space where artists can learn, develop and produce art. Located in a purpose-built facility in Newhaven, Edinburgh, it comprises 26 artist studios, 2 project spaces and 4 specialist workspaces including wood, metal and mixed-media workspaces and a foundry. There is also a courtyard, exhibition spaces, residency apartments and a public café.

It is a membership organisation which has grown from a small artist-run collective set up in 1986 to become one of Scotland’s leading visual arts organisations. It has a strongly artist-focused ethos and its vision is to provide the best environment in which to support artists, to contribute to the development of critical thinking and creative learning within contemporary sculpture and to create outstanding experiences for audiences.

ESW plays a vital role in visual arts in Scotland – providing access to specialist production facilities, supporting artists’ research and opening up contemporary sculpture to a diverse audience through our learning programmes. It also plays an important role in the life of the surrounding community.

We are a Scottish-registered charity and a company limited by guarantee. We receive funding from Creative Scotland and from City of Edinburgh Council.

We also raise funds from trusts and foundations to support our running costs and programme, and generate income mainly through space rental, specialist services and learning activities.

The Board and its responsibilities

The Board is responsible for the effective governance of ESW and is the employer of its staff. They have corporate and individual responsibilities under company law and charity law, within the context of the organisation’s Memorandum and Articles of Association, its governing document. They are not responsible for day-to-day management of ESW but they have the following among their collective responsibilities:

  • setting the strategic direction having due regard for the ESW’s ethos and values;
  • developing purpose, aims and objectives;
  • overseeing the use of assets and resources to make sure they are used to achieve the above;
  • ensuring financial health and sustainability through effective budgeting and financial management, and supporting fundraising;
  • complying with legislative and regulatory requirements;
  • monitor and review systems and processes, including financial controls;
  • assessing and reviewing risk;
  • ensuring that ESW fulfils its legal obligations for health and safety;
  • supporting the Director in ensuring a high level of staff welfare and staff development;
  • remuneration and succession planning;
  • supporting the Director in her management responsibilities and holding her to account for delivering the Board’s strategy, aims and objectives;
  • promoting equality and diversity throughout the organisation;
  • acting as ambassadors for ESW, its artists and projects and promoting and developing its mission and values;
  • striving for best practice in governance;
    attending Board meetings and contributing to Its decisions;
  • participating in committee meetings as appropriate;
    acting in a collegiate manner, with mutual respect, integrity, openness and accountability and in the best interests of the charity at all times.

Time Commitment

There are 4-5 Board Meetings each year including the AGM. These usually take place on week day evenings, starting around 6pm. In addition, sub-committees, in which some members of the Board are involved, meet 2 – 6 times each year. Current sub-committees are Finance & Governance, and Staff, Welfare & Remuneration. A schedule of meetings is usually agreed in advance but can be varied, with collective agreement, if that becomes necessary, and to avoid clashing with other paid employment for any board members

Board and committee members receive papers (including reports and minutes) one week before the meeting to give time to review the information in advance. The aim, consistent with good governance, is not to overload Board members with paperwork.

There are sometimes other key events, which it is useful to attend such as exhibition previews and meetings with funders.

Terms of Appointment

Board Members are:

– members and directors of the company.

– trustees of the charity.

– part-time, unpaid, non-executive posts.

– may be reimbursed for travel and accommodation

expenses, in line with finance protocols.

– appointed for three-years in the first instance with opportunity of reappointment after that.

How to Apply

Please submit a note of interest saying why you would like to join our Board saying why you would like to join our Board, and what skills and experience you would bring with you, to Laura Simpson, ESW’s Director. Laura’s email address is
The deadline for applications is: 16 August 2020

We would also appreciate if you could fill out this anonymous equalities monitoring form online.

Eddie Frizzell, ESW’s Chair, and Laura Simpson are working on the initial stages of the recruitment and are available to talk if you would like to ask about the role and discuss your interest in applying. Please contact Laura in the first instance to arrange for this to be done.

Data Protection

All information provided will be treated with the strictest confidence and will be held for recruitment purposes only.

Equalities information, when offered, is gathered anonymously and is held for statistical purposes only to help us know if we are reaching and encouraging a wide range of people to apply

For more information


Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop
0131 551 4490

Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop is a registered Scottish Charity No: SC002404 and a Company Limited by Guarantee Registered Company no: SC123174.