The Northern Way, working with Arts Council England to deliver the £10m ‘Welcome to the North’ public art programme, wishes to commission a truly innovative and original virtual artwork ‘Gateway to the North’.

Tenders are invited from organisations seeking to work with a named artist(s), individual artists or collaborating artists for this major commission.

The emphasis of this new commission will be on its virtual long-term presence, although it can also include physical manifestations that make a link between the real and virtual, and is open to a range of artforms and media including: sound, software art, blogging, performance and events, online worlds and mapping systems eg Second Life, GoogleEarth. The proposals will need to include a web-based accessible platform and applicants are also welcome to consider the use of a number of other distribution and presentation platforms such as podcasts and videocasts; CD and DVD; mobile phones and locative media.

The commission will:

  • Make connections across the three Northern regions
  • Reference and conceptualise the North through its geographical, social, cultural and economic landscapes
  • Provide an opportunity for all users to engage with the commission
  • Provide a platform which is accessible to local, regional, national and international audiences
  • Represent or consider the North in all its diversity.

The proposal will also need to include a detailed education programme, evaluation programme and PR/marketing.

The commission must be completed no later than the end of March 2008.*

The commission is open to artists in the UK and beyond.

Full details and specifications are available from: Kath Savage on 01924 486 212 or

Shortlisted applicants will be invited for interview to present their proposals.

The Northern Way a unique collaboration of regions and cities from across the North of England, led by the three Northern Regional Development Agencies: Yorkshire Forward, Northwest Regional Development Agency and One NorthEast.

This is a 20 year strategy to transform the economy of the North of England. Success will be determined by the bridging of a £30 billion output gap between the North and the average for England.