Residence: Introducing bursary award recipient bitter/blue

Date published: 13 Jul 2022

Posted by: Joe Pick


Artist bitter/blue has been awarded the Future/Fresh bursary as part of City Arts’ RESIDENCE project. This bursary was for artists from Black, South Asian, East Asian or mixed ethnic backgrounds. bitter/blue was selected for the bursary by a panel representing these communities.

‘soap’ by bitter/blue, based on stills from Carrie, Red Bank Films/Metro Goldwyn Mayer, 1976

With the support of the bursary, bitter/blue will be in residence at City Arts. They will create a body of work which explores the spectrum of Black, queer, trans experiences. Experiences ranging from the joyous to the traumatic. blue intends to work in a diverse range of media. Artwork will meld audio, video, ink, paint, pencil, prose and more.

Too often, the only barrier between an artist and their creativity is lack of funding. Queer artists of colour and marginalised genders – myself included – are routinely expected to accept their positions as observers to the practice of creating art, especially professionally. For that reason, I’m incredibly excited to have been chosen as a bursary recipient. I welcome this opportunity to reimagine the limits of my artistic practice.

bitter/blue’s collected work will be showcased at the end of the residency.

About the artist

Please note: bitter/blue’s pronouns are he/him, she/her and fae/faer.


bitter/blue is a writer, poet, visual artist and activist. He describes himself as: “A proud college dropout born and raised in the mud of The Meadows, Nottingham. An ex-member of the academic elite and aspiring petit-bourgeois, he now makes magickal the mundane and erotic – the taboo and esoteric.”

bitter/blue draws on his personal history and narrative of Black queerness, transness, as well as the aftermath of survival. Her previous projects include a foray into the oft unseen underground of sex work (2018), and traditional Black (Yoruba and Jamaican) spirituality (2020).

Faer describes their art as, “confessional mixed medium works endeavor to seduce the uninitiated and arouse all that presses, only-just-hidden, against the flesh of the venerated Other.”

Meet the Panel

Each RESIDENCE bursary recipient was selected by a panel. bitter/blue’s was awarded by a panel representing people from Black, South Asian, East Asian or mixed ethnic backgrounds.

Honey Williams

Honey is a creative powerhouse, singer-songwriter, visual artist, graphic designer, DJ, choir director of the Gang of Angels & educator. As a visual artist, her art explores decolonisation, identity, misogynoir and fatphobia. Honey was invited by The British Council to go to Kingston, Jamaica to be a Muralist to honour the Windrush Generation & is currently an Artist in Residence at City Arts.

Minder Kaur Athwal

Minder Kaur Athwal is an improv comedy performer and facilitator working to help improve people’s lives through playful and practical workshops. Minder designs positive experiences, builds inclusive environments and works to make organisations more effective in meeting the needs of their members or service users.

Raisa McClary-Francis

Raisa is a self-taught non-traditional artist who is currently developing her professional practice. Recent and past experiences have been to do with research, project building, creating, curating and facilitating opportunities. She is also a writer and performance poet, creating work that is eerie and surreal.