The Covid 19 crisis of 2020 has been an unprecedented time for us all and during lockdown photographers globally have been documenting and responding to the worldwide pandemic.

During this time GRAIN awarded Commissions and Bursaries to emerging and established photographers, artists and writers, based regionally and nationally. The practitioners explored, responded to and documented the crisis of post lockdown society, inequalities and communities and made new work as everyone was affected by social distancing, the wearing of face coverings and PPE and new ways of working and seeing family and friends.

The Commissions and Bursaries supported photographers, artists and writers to make new work at a challenging time for everyone, including the arts and cultural sectors and at a time when people wanted to continue to be productive and feel connected.

The resulting work is an important record of our lives during Covid, our experiences of lockdown and major changes to our way of life. Reflecting on and responding to these times photographers, artists and writers have explored the affects on the outside world, on our health and wellbeing, our working environments and family and private spaces. As the familiar became unfamiliar the work is an important archive of a year lived as never before.

22 Photographers, Writers and Artists were selected based upon their submissions from a large national Open Call, generously supported by Arts Council England and the National Lottery Players.

The seven projects that are taking place in Birmingham are also supported by Birmingham City Council and the three projects taking place in Stoke-on-Trent are supported by Appetite. These commissions and bursaries are focussed on how communities and individuals have responded during these challenging times.

Invisible Chains: Photography’s Ingrained Assumptions

by Lewis Bush, part of COVID-19 Responses

I am reaching out to you

by Anneka French, part of COVID-19 Responses


by Anna Souter, part of COVID-19 Responses


by Lydia Goldblatt, part of COVID-19 Responses

Birmingham Lockdown Stories

by Jaskirt Dhaliwal Boora, COVID-19 Responses

Street Cleaners

by Chris Hoare, part of COVID-19 Responses


by Dan Dale, part of COVID-19 Responses

A Slippery Slope

by Freddy Griffiths, part of COVID-19 Responses


by Jemima Yong, part of COVID-19 Responses


by Ngadi Smart, part of COVID-19 Responses

Playing Their Part

by Shaista Chishty, part of COVID-19 Responses

What would you say

by Andrew Roberts, COVID-19 Responses

All People Are Like Grass

by Barnaby Kent, COVID-19 Responses

The Planting of a Fig Tree

by Chris Neophytou, COVID-19 Responses

from two metres

by Joanna Fursman, COVID-19 Responses

Covid Mirror

by Olivier Jamin, COVID-19 Responses

Yas Lime

A response from Yas Lime for the Life in Lockdown Project

The Chronicles of Lockdown

by Robyn Clark, COVID-19 Responses


by Sarah Peart, COVID-19 Responses

Life Behind The Front Line

by Holly Johnson, COVID-19 Responses

Copyright 2016 GRAIN.