Open Out Arts

Leonardo da Vinci Programme

Mobility Actions

Mobilities describe one professional/staff/artist or volunteer from each partner attending a professional development opportunity in a foreign country. Throughout the Open Out Arts programme, each partner has 24 mobilities and each partner hosts the other partners and their representatives in their home country at least once.



Ramshacklicious visit Bui Bolg in Wexford in June 2013

Will Dastson and Jack Stoddart visited Bui Bolg in Wexford on the June weekend 2013. Jack as artistic director with Ramshacklicious, was interested to learn how Bui Bolg work, what makes them tick and where they get inspiration from. It was a sharing experience and also an opportunity to develop relationships as artists without the pressure of being surrounded by promoters and festival coordinators seeking instant results. It is so important as artists to have the space to experience new things, see new horizons and grow new perspectives and viewpoints. These opportunities are so rare, as so often the artist is pressurised into worrying about how he is going to pay the next bill. This time was very precious for both Bui Bolg and Ramshacklicious to share ideas and knowledge, but also to have fun getting to know each other, giving space for imaginative and cognitive thought processes.

Will is set designer and engineer with Ramshacklicious and his mission was to acquire new techniques, learn about new materials and gather information on construction issues for specific projects which he is working on with Ramshacklicious.

Colm Lowney and Will shared a lot of information which will inform many future projects to come. 

This residency was a rare opportunity to explore projects purely from an artistic and constructive point of view and to develop concepts beyond our four walls.

Bui Bolg visit Close Act in Tillburg during Mundial Festival in June 2013

June 2013 Bui Bolg - Hosting activity record - Close Act (pdf 1.4Mo)

Ramschacklicious is in residency training in Le Fourneau of 24 to 29 May 2013

This support of Le Fourneau has allowed to the company to discover the specifics of French arts street (role and function of a National center of Street Arts, landscape and aesthetic of street arts in Europe, mounting a production) to increase their employability in the French and European market.





During the residency, they worked with the management team of le Fourneau (Michele Bosseur and Caroline Raffin) and the outside look of professionals including Alexis Nys, responsible for dissemination of Makadam Kanibal company and Leonor Canales, Artistic Director of the company A Petit Pas, to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of their project.

Finally, Ramshacklicious met the opportunity to play in front of a French audience and able to talk to him about what works and what does not work in France. Throughout their training, Leonor canales was with the company to get to know the artists and their world and help them in their thinking.

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Report Ramshack (pdf 229ko)

Open Out Arts European Network : trip in Bristol 24-26 April 2013

Since 2011, Le Fourneau, National Street Arts Centre takes part in the European network Open Out Arts in the Leonardo Da Vinci Programme financed by the European commission.

Le Fourneau is involved from August 2011 to June 2013 with 4 other organizations in England, Ireland and Netherlands in this partnership which aims to increase exchanges in the field of outdoor arts.

Therefore, this programme which fosters mobility and vocational training in the European Union, gathers together :

From 24 to 26 April 2013, members of Le Fourneau, accompanied by a delegation of french outdoor artists, went to Bristol to discover, among other things, the specificities of the outdoor arts in Great Britain. A stay which was marked by exchanges and training in the aim to setting up cross-border networks, encouraging employability of french companies in Great Britain and perfecting their knowledge of new techniques of communication (such as social networks). An active stay in Bristol !

The french delegation in Bristol :

With (from left to right and from back to front) : Eric Hervé, Une de plus Company - artistic director, Jérémie Mocquard from Collectif de la Meute Company, Fabienne Quemeneur, Le Nom du Titre company - production manager, Thaïs Le Saux, ango Sumo Company - Production Stage Manager, Anne Delétoille, Le Fourneau - communication manager, Caroline Raffin, Le Fourneau - executive assistant, Amélie Bertheleme, Tango Sumo Company – Administration and production manager and Michèle Bosseur, Le Fourneau – co-director.

And the Leonardo Da Vinci Programme partners...

Thursday 25th April 10.30 : « The Puppet Place » visit

Historically the puppet is important in Bristol and South West England. There is also an important puppetry specialized organization (AARDMAN) next to "The Puppet Place". The city has managed to attract puppet makers and puppeteers. “The Puppet Place” is an association which includes 3 companies who use puppetry in their work. The association rents to Bristol City Council a building on Spike Island in the city centre. This building houses offices and workshops.

Up to now, the charity members are voluntary. Eventually, they hope to pay themselves and to dedicate themselves to this place. In the studios robotics specialists are next to wooden puppets and to latex masks. For this, “The Puppet Place” is exciting, as it involves various techniques of puppet conception.

The Puppet Place's activities :

  • the organization of a biennial festival : Bristol Festival of Puppetry
  • hosting artists who can rent a studio
  • workshops / trainings for beginners and experienced puppeteers

As it is often the case in Great Britain, the charity does not benefit from state subsidies.

Web site :

Eric Hervé, artistic director in « Une de Plus »
Company presents his company's work on puppets
in/for their shows.

Thursday 25th April 11.45 : « The Island » Visit

« The Island » is an art and creation centre in the old police station in Bristol city centre. It hosts a wide variety of creative spaces from circus training, dance and rehearsal rooms, making spaces and artists studios, recording studios, a gallery, and a suite of early 20th century police cells which are used as stages.

A Sewing Studio

Circus training space

« The Island » is a very interesting model as it gathers together a wide range of artists of all artistic disciplines. Everyone grows from the work of others and, thus, the group exhibitions are transformed.

Website :

The White Room

The Gallery


2.00 pm: Seminary about social media in the Pervasive Media Studios

The French delegation went to Pervasive Media Studios to meet the other Leonardo partners and to follow a workshop on social networks. Social Networks are great communication tools for outdoor art companies. These both free and simple tools can touch a large number of persons and are very usefull to announce shows, to stay in touch with schedulers. Therefore, it is essential to use those tools correctly without taking the risk of ruining the organization's communication.

An intervention in three parts. Matthew Austin, one of MAYK (a theatre producing organisation based in Bristol) directors, starts this workshop by presenting Social Networks and gives the participants a few tips and advices : how to use them, how to target a specific audience...

Then, Richard Haedon from Desperate Men company illustrates these comments with an example of a successful campaign on Social Networks (creation of a short-lived and live forum on street art with about forty participants). Finally, Matthew Whittle, Wardrobe Theatre producer and director, mentions the interests and purposes of a structured social networks strategy and the necessity of links between the different communication web mediums (from a website to facebook an/or Twitter...).

Links :

4.00 pm: Workshop on diffusion and production in Great Britain and Europe

Kate Hazel (Hat Fair and Alchemy Productions) presents us a picture of outdoor theatre in Great Britain : it's structure, financing, actors … She also shared her experience and gave a few tips and advices to facilitate the relations between English and French professionals.

After this presentation, a time was devoted to exchanges and practical questions between the participants.

Websites :

At the end of the day, Leonardo partners

Friday 26th april

Friday 26th april morning, all the Open Out Arts Programme partners and guests meet in a most incredible place : “Circomedia”

The place St Paul's Church was converted and saved in 2005. Since then, it houses Circomedia a circus school (which was founded 15 years ago). The teaching programme combines traditional circus, theatre and creativity. Circomedia, centre for contemporary circus and physical theatre, opens to the public for professional shows (circus, theatre and dance).

The place St Paul's Church was converted and saved in 2005. Since then, it houses Circomedia a circus school (which was founded 15 years ago). The teaching programme combines traditional circus, theatre and creativity. Circomedia, centre for contemporary circus and physical theatre, opens to the public for professional shows (circus, theatre and dance).

For this last training and exchange meeting, 5 main Leonardo partners made a last statement : Theatre Bristol, Circomedia, Close Act Company, Bui Bolg Company, and Le Fourneau- Le Fourneau. Then they also talked about the differences between the outdoor theatre field in France (specially with Outdoor Arts National Centres) and in Great Britain (where they is no equivalent to the French Ministry of Culture)

The participants parted in the late morning, and left St Paul's Church full of memories and projects.

Information sheet from artists' meeting on Thursday (pdf 162ko)
Social media final (pdf 39ko)
Notes from Thursday artists' meeting (pdf 1.3Mo)
Notes from Friday meeting at Circomedia Church (pdf 171ko)


Mimbre in Le Relecq-Kerhuon for the Pic-Nic on the bridge / Sunday, September 9th, 13:09

More than a thousand people for this key event, which has now been ending the summer season of street theatre in Le Relecq-Kerhuon since 2010, on the Albert Louppe bridge.

For 3 years, this established event presents the new shows from UK companies hosted as part of the European network. Symbolically, the picnic takes place on the bridge Albert Louppe, bridge over the Channel, bridge between our 2 cultures.

This year, thanks to the Leonardo da Vinci program and to the network Open Out Arts, the company Mimbre has benefited from the support of SeaChange Arts to cross the Channel and join Brittany. So, Emma Norin, Charmaine Childs, Alison Halstead and Annemie Pierle were able to meet the professional team of the National Centre for Street Arts Le Fourneau who introduced them to the audience in Britanny and put them in touch with Matt Feerick, art director of the company Wet Pic Nic, also programmed on this event. Trained to the international school of theatre Jacques Lecoq, Matt Feerick was able to share with 4 artists of Mimbre and these 2 young teams were able to confront their artistic direction approaches.

« Les pique-niqueurs-spectateurs » were greeted by Isabelle Mazelin, in charge of the Culture policy for the City of Relecq-Kerhuon, Michèle Bosseur, the Fourneau's co-Director, and Matt Feerick, Wet Picnic company's artistic director. Matt invited the public to coundown in Shakespeare's language: Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, oven, three, two, one, zero : time for picnic and then theatre !

15h15, presentation of the four acrobats of Mimbre. Four women, four different bodies, personalities and stories, take us to a 40-minute journey where dance, circus and humour are intricately mixed. A melting skilfully designed to tell us about being a woman, about the feminine body in all its beauty, its tensions and its imperfections. An attractive moment of grace and freshness.

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photographers : Claire Lamri et Jacques Nicolas

The Out There International Street Arts and Circus Festival / 4 to 9 September 2012

Partners from the Leonardo – Open Out Arts project attended the Out There International Circus and Street Arts Festival. Partners included artists from Close Act and artists from Bui Bolg as well as 3 French street arts (L'Affaire Foraine, Pied en Sol and Les Goulus) acts who performed at the festival as well as took part in professional development and networking opportunities.

Out There International Circus and Street Arts Festival -this year saw a weeklong festival for the first time held between the 4 and 9 September in a range of outdoor settings in Great Yarmouth. With over 140 performers and 100 performances; the 2012 edition attracted record crowds. The festival celebrated its fifth year and is now one of the country's largest and most diverse festivals dedicated to street arts and circus. The longer schedule, good weather and ambitious programming, which included Waterlitz, the show featuring a 65 foot high iron giant from iconic street arts company Générik Vapeur, helped attract an estimated 70,000 people.

In St George's Park, crowds were treated to rampaging French Horseman (Les Goulus), passionate tango from Pied en Sol, and sideshow curiosities from L'Affaire Foraine; while giant insects from the Netherland's Close Act paraded through the audience. Alongside them performers and companies from Latin America, the USA, Belgium, Ireland, Portugal and Spain entertained the crowds. Bui Bolg returned to the Out There Festival to help install the washing line as well as 3 other installations brought over from Ireland – these included a giant super hero, an eerie eyeball and a fantasy head depicting earth and the sea. Bui Bolg also delivered a drop in workshop throughout the festival weekend engaging local families and young people in making their own super hero outfit; the company worked with over 200 children and young people.

35 arts professionals (circus promoters, venues and street arts producers) took part in a symposium held at the Out There Festival on the Friday the 7 September. Chaired by circus promoter Verena Cornwall; the symposium addressed key issues within the sector such as:

Speakers and attendees included colleagues from across the UK and Europe; speakers including partners from SeaChange Arts' current 5 major European partnerships in street arts and circus spanning the UK, Ireland, France, Spain, Holland and Belgium. Speakers included Yohann Floch, Co-ordinator of Circo Strada network, Lucy Medlycott from Bui Bolg and Hesther Melief from Close Act. All delegates found the symposium very useful in terms of meeting new contacts, networking and exploring common issues. It was also a fantastic opportunity for Seachange Arts to promote the facilities at the Drill House to circus and street arts producers and artistic companies and to increase the profile of the Out There Festival nationally and internationally.

All the partners from the Open Out Arts programme felt they had benefitted from the opportunity to showcase their work to international and UK producers and festival directors; helping promote their work and securing future business. The artists also had the time throughout the festival to network and meet other new artists and artistic companies, be inspired by other people's work and discuss potential collaboration and new projects.

photographer : Andi Sapey

Les Rias du Pays de Quimperlé, Street Arts Festival / August 28th to September 2nd 2012

As part of the RIAS, the new festival of street theatre supported by the National Street Arts Center, le Fourneau in collaboration with the Community of Communes of Quimperlé, 10 english professionals were welcomed to Quimperlé from august 30th to september 2nd 2012. In fact, thanks to the project Open Arts Out of the Leonardo programme, the Bristol Theatre, represented by its producer Carrie Rhys-Davies, allowed 4 young artists : Sarah Peterkin (director, Take Art), Holly Stoppit (artist, Ramshacklicious, and teacher, Circomedia), Becky Illsely (artist, Jilted Pig), Alice Ellerby (artist, Jilted Pig) and 5 street theatre students (Mary Maw, Truan Mathias, Lucy Spielberg, Alex Turner, Catherine Boot) to discover a wide range of the french creation in public space (20 companies, 23 shows, 12 creations), to take part in a professional meeting and of course to meet the team of the National Street Arts Centre le Fourneau.

The meaning of their presence in the RIAS Festival was to :

The programme of this meeting :

photographer :

Meeting between the actors of the Open Out Arts network during a friendly brunch organized by the Fourneau / 16th July 2012

During the 'Tonnerres de Brest 2012', the international Brest maritime festival which took place from the 13th to the 18th of July, the Centre National des Arts de la Rue Le Fourneau invited 10 companies to give life to the « Comptoir des Arts de la rue ».

This site was located along the river Penfeld and offers the opportunity of an artistic and friendly stop over where artists and members of the public could share dreams and lots of laughing! This place was dedicated to the imagination. There, artists from many European countries met and shared their ideas. They presented to the audience a showcase of extraordinary and intense artistic moments.

On Monday 16th July, over 20 artists from a variety of countries (UK, Ireland, Germany, Sweden and France of course!) came to Le Fourneau to meet and share a brunch. « Bacon and eggs » were on the menu together with fresh bread, brioches and fruits...

Together with representatives from the Culture Department of the Brest City Hall, all the participants met for an Open Out Arts project presentation including objectives and actions.

This was led by three of the projects founders :

After this presentation, the artists introduced themselves and discussed what kind of opportunities this new professional network could create for them on the European scale.

For example, the collaboration between Theatre Bristol, the Sea Change Festival and Le Fourneau gave the opportunity to Lucy Cassidy, Abi Hill, Pete Phillips, Claude Jovino / Search Party company, to Matt Pang / Pan Gottic company and to Jon Hicks to perform for the first time in France.

Michèle Bosseur introduced Le Fourneau, National Center of Street Arts, and their place in the national network. She presented a landscape of Street arts in France, based on a DVD produced by Hors Les Murs (French national center of ressource in street and circus arts), dealing with aesthetics. Answering to the questions from the attendance, Michèle Bosseur explained the law context concerning public spaces in France, based once again on a document from Hors Les Murs, " Organise events in public spaces".

The participants in this Open Out Arts brunch : Philippe Lorreyte, member of the Culture Department direction of the Brest City Hall / Michèle Bosseur and Claude Morizur, comanagers Centre National des Arts de la Rue le Fourneau / Caroline Raffin, Centre National des Arts de la Rue le Fourneau management assistant / Joe Mackintosh, Sea Change Arts manager / Lucie Medlycott and Colm Lowney, Bui Bolg company / Simon Collins and Ricciotti Molfese, PAKA company / Immo Schotz, artist from Hamburg / Pierre Bonnaud, Qualité Street company / Tina Segner and Ken Fanning, Tumble Circus company / Jon Hicks / Bill Palmer and Mike Lister, Avanti Display company.

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photographer : André Querré

Festival Mundial, hosted by Close Act in Tilburg / 15 to 17 June 2012

Professional development opportunities for partners, staff and associate artists included :

Close Act in Carhaix for Les Charrues dans la rue / 3 to 5 May 2012

For the 3rd edition of « Charrues dans la Rue » everyone in Carhaix moved together in unisson with this great Street Arts event.

The festival opened with the Dutch company Close Act with 7 volunteers and trainees from the Vieilles Charrues Association, carrying flags. They all really enjoyed taking part in the White Wing performance which was presented for the first time in France.

This fantastic street parade led by these huge white-winged silhouettes guided hundreds people in the streets of Carhaix to their stop at the Tour d'Auvergne square.

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Just before the performance, 7 volunteers and trainees from the Vieilles Charrues Festival worked all day Saturday with the Close Act company. They learned how to handle the flags. With the help of Karine and Julie from the Fourneau, the volunters joyously fulfilled their mission of helping out at that particular performance. For some, this was a first time experience in a Street Arts event... which will not be soon forgotten !

This experience was made thanks to the Leonardo funds and ressources. It allowed artists to work together with various people, to teach and share skills and create dynamic projects in accordance to the aims and objectives of the Open Out Arts programme.

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photographer :

Bui Bolg and their Great Yarmouth Residency / 16 to 20 April 2012

Between the 16 and 20 April 2012, 2 artists from Bui Bolg worked at Seachange Arts new premises – the Drill Hall to develop a bespoke commission for the Out There International Street Arts and Circus Festival on the 8 and 9 September.

Bui Bolg worked with 5 local artists to design and develop a large scale washing line decorated with swimsuits inspired from the Victorian era to the1950s. The washing line will be strung up across lamp posts in St George's Park as part of the Out There International Street Arts and Circus Festival to be held on the 8 and 9 September 2012.

All local artists who took part thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Local artists included carnival arts specialists, puppet and textile artists and 3D artists.

Kate Munro one of the participating artists said: "thanks so much for a really great week. I learnt so much and it was refreshing and nourishing to be learning new skills and working as part of a team. Exactly what I needed!"

All local artists really enjoyed taking part and learning new skills which could then be incorporated into future community projects and artistic designs and development. Local artist, Jankie said" I learnt new skills in scaling up a pattern making a macquette and working with different materials and also working on such a large scale".

During the week, 8 young people drawn from Norfolk Schools aged 13 to 17 who are part of an alternative education course entitled the Creative Gateway attended a 3 hour workshop working with all the artists and learning how to cut out patterns and decorating the large swimsuits with muslin. None of the young people had ever worked on such a large scale and with the particular materials before and this was a fantastic opportunity to work on a real commission.

Bui Bolg artists also benefitted from the 5 days placement and Caoimhe said of her experience "It has been really great to pass on skills and work with local artists to create new work for St Georges Park and involve all these local artists in developing bespoke decorations for the festival".

Through the Leonardo funding, it was possible to fund and resource this ambitious residency and allow local artists to work with Bui Bolg and learn new skills, share experiences and create new commissions whilst very much delivering on the aims and objectives of the Open Out Arts programme.

Bui Bolg hosted all partners during the St Patricks festival 2012 / March 2012

Bui Bolg invited everyone to see the Bui Bolg production workshop in rural Wexford, to meet the production crew and to view the work being made for the St Patrick's festival, before it left for Dublin.

A professional meeting was held between all partners during which the following items were discussed :

Partners met representatives from several key arts organisations in Wexford including Wexford arts centre and Wexford opera house. Artists and Partners then travelled to Dublin to watch and understand how the parade was being managed and took part in preparing for the parade with Bui Bolg artists and community participants.

A meeting was also arranged between other key leaders in street arts in Ireland; including the Artistic director for St Patricks festival, the street arts advisor to the Arts Council and a professional artist who works between the fields of theatre and circus.

Partners also had the opportunity to visit the St Patrick's Day Festival located in Merrion Square in the heart of Dublin – here was an opportunity for producers to see street arts and circus acts for potential future bookings.

Partners were also treated to a healthy cultural exchange through sightseeing, food and some of that famed Irish hospitality!

Partner Meeting Minutes - Ireland - 14th - 18th March 2012 (pdf 460ko)

Meeting in Great Yarmouth / 17 to 19 September 2011

Seachange Arts hosted all partners during the Out There International Festival of Street Arts and Circus in September 2011. Artists and professionals from all partners attended a planning meeting held on the 17th and 19th September. In this planning meeting the following areas were discussed

Partners and visiting artists also had the opportunity to network with and showcase to other international festival organisers and street arts producers throughout the festival period (Saturday the 17 and Sunday the 18 September) as well as meeting other artists and companies to discuss potential joint working and new commissions. The partners were also introduced to other key cultural agencies and promoters locally including the owner of the Hippodrome Circus (the UKs last surviving Victorian purpose built circus) and the Street Arts Producer from Norfolk and Norwich Festival.

Parnter meeting minutes 17, 18 and 19 Sept (pdf 345ko)