artist accelerator is a 12-month incubator programme for early-career, Luton-based creative practitioners of any discipline. Inspired by the tech industry start-up model, the programme immerses artists in a university-led hothouse for ideas. It accelerates careers and pushes artists to develop their practice into thriving, socially-engaged creative enterprises.


© J. Essex


meet the 2017 artist accelerator cohort

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artist accelerator offers:

12-months of training and development

• a £5000 stipend for living and training expenses

• a collaborative hothouse for ideas development 

• co-working sessions with catalyst artists

• a 3-phase programme designed to accelerate creative business models


phase one - research & training

January to June 2017

Intensive training, co-working, access to creative space & studio facilities and a testing ground for sharing work-in-progress. Develop robust business plans, partnerships and incubate ideas.

phase two - project development

June to August 2017

testbeds bid-writing surgery, partnership development, mentoring, co-working and a testing ground for sharing work-in-progress. Develop exceptional funding applications and establish partnerships and audiences.

phase three - outreach project

September to December 2017

Deliver an outreach project with young people in Luton. Receive mentoring and leadership from catalyst artists and test your practice in front of  young audiences.



Applications will re-open in November 2017 for TestBeds 2018. If you would like to learn more about the process, please visit the accelerator application information page.