Ipswich exhibition of art by women wins £16,000 grant from government
PUBLISHED: 11:38 23 October 2018 | UPDATED: 11:51 23 October 2018
Ipswich Museum has received a £16,000 grant from the government's Equalities Office to support a "Women 100" project to show 100 works by women artists.
The grant, to the Friends of Ipswich Museum, will enable the artworks which are part of the museum’s own collection and from other private collections, to go on show at the Ipswich Art Gallery – the former art school next to the museum – from December 8.
There will also be creative art workshops featuring local women encouraging people to take part in civic life – including getting involved in the democratic process and voting.
The grant comes from a £1.5 million Government fund to increase diversity in politics and is part of a £5 million centenary fund to open politics to the public and encouraging more women to get involved and have an equal voice in the decisions that affect them.
It is marking the centenary of the first women to get the vote in British elections.
Friends Chair Richard Wilson welcomed the news: “The Friends of the Ipswich Museums are proud and delighted to have been awarded this substantial grant from the Women’s Vote Centenary Grant Scheme.
“We are hugely pleased that it will enable Ipswich, through the Colchester and Ipswich Museums Service, to justly celebrate women’s franchise.”
Vice-Chair Denise Fiennes added: “The Friends are a dynamic support to the Ipswich Museums, with over 50% female representation on its committee, including its President Lady Deben.
“Research shows that 16% of UK companies in 2017 had no female board members at all, and many boards continue to exclude women entirely. The voluntary sector is much more equitably led, and we are proud that both women and men care so passionately about the future of the town’s heritage.”
Councillor Carole Jones, Ipswich Borough Council’s Museums portfolio-holder added her support. “This is an important year and we want to help ensure that the struggles of women to win the vote all those years ago are not forgotten but recognised today.
“This grant and support from the Friends will enable us to present this in a new and exciting way that is relevant to young people and I am very grateful to the Friends for securing the funding that allows us to have both this exhibition and the activities programme.”
The Minister for Women, Victoria Atkins, said: “The brave women who fought for the equal rights of women and men to vote must be honoured.
“Today we have the highest number of women in history sitting in the House of Commons. However, at only 32% women MPs we have a long way to go before we see true equality.
“By funding these innovative projects we will inspire women and young people across the country to become active participants in our democracy.
“We want to see a new generation of women raise their voices, get stuck in and see how they can make a difference in their local communities and across the country.”