Life in Torridge has so much to offer – amazing beaches, great surf, spectacular countryside and fantastic people.

There are also challenges, from school to friends and family, stress, anxiety, exams and fear for your future to just not being able to get anywhere or do anything.

Even that nagging sense that nobody’s listening to you …

On March 17, 2018 a very special exhibition opened at the Burton at Bideford. We are showing a series of portraits by the photographer Diane Arbus as part of the ARTIST ROOMS national exhibition programme delivered by National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Arbus often chose to photograph people whose situation or choices in life kept them on the margins of society to create a true ‘celebration of things as they are’.

Inspired by these groundbreaking images the Burton at Bideford would like to help a new generation of photographers. You don’t need any high-flying equipment or even need to think of yourself as artistic.

We’re looking for people to be involved in a 12 month photography project from March 2018 until February 2019, giving you and your lens a voice. We want people to talk about the work you’re showing them, to help them understand where your head’s at.

We have places for 12 people aged 13 – 19 who want to join our project.

We are offering:

  • A visit to Tate Modern in London to check out some of the latest art, meet senior curators who put on the shows, and get a behind the scenes introduction to the world of contemporary art.
  • Learn from published writers and poets in order to develop the level of storytelling within your work.
  • Have the chance to discover some of the amazing stories behind the photographs of Diane Arbus and learn to share these as a gallery guide at the Burton at Bideford.
  • Attend master classes with professional photographers to develop your skills.
  • Get an Arts Award qualification by doing your own art and visiting exhibitions – this is a recognised qualification, giving you an extra GCSE or even A-level.
  • Be the curator of a special exhibition at the Burton at Bideford, including your art and photographs by other young people.
  • Shape exactly how this project works out – we’ve got all kinds of suggestions, like creating a book of art by young people in north Devon … but we need your ideas and help.

How it works:

We’ll be having regular meetings at the Burton in Bideford (one per month) but even if you can’t make all the sessions you can still be involved. We’d like everyone taking part in the project to submit at least one photograph each month that reflects your life, your feelings and where your head’s at. Some of these images will be selected (by you) for an exhibition at the Burton at Bideford and elsewhere in north Devon. You can follow our story on our blog as well as our Facebook and Twitter pages where we will be sharing content and recording the project.


Nothing, nada, zilch! For people who live a long way from the Burton at Burton we’ll try to help out with travel costs and find ways to connect you to the story using technology, such as our project blog.

What next?

Please email us on or phone us on 01237 471455 if you’re interested in joining the project

Don’t worry if you’ve never done anything like this before, or are concerned about how much time you can commit. This could be the start of something big; be a part of it now.

Not sure if you’re up for taking part at the moment?

Email us on with the subject line ‘Future Projects’ and we’ll keep you posted about the project and other ways you can choose to get involved later in the year.

Where’s Your Head At? has been made possible with the support of ARTIST ROOMS (National Galleries of Scotland and Tate) with funding from Art Fund and Arts Council England;  Torridge District Council and Bideford Bridge Trust and with kind support from Space*, Intagr8 and the Rotary Club.