A page of competitions, residencies and other opportunities open to the Gulf’s creative community. If you know of anything we should include, please let us know.

DeadlineWhatDetails

23 Jan 2020

The Christo and Jeanne Claude Award 2020

Organiser: NYU Abu Dhabi / ADMAF 
Location: Abu Dhabi
Info: website

Medium:
Artwork 

Key elements:

  • Awarded for an artwork “that, in the spirit of Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s work, can be publicly exhibited and enjoyed”
  • Entrants are encouraged to think creatively about how to exhibit the work
  • Any medium (including, but not limited to, photography, sculpture, installation, land art, video)
  • Current or recent students only, must be nominated by a named mentor
  • Apply as an individual or a team (max three people)
  • Work should be durable: it will be exhibited outside on the NYUAD Campus
  • Work should be produced with a maximum budget of $10,000 (AED 36,730)
  • Apply with outline schedule and proposed budget as well as statements from mentor and entrant
  • Shortlisted entrants (and mentors) will present to the jury. Winner will be announced quickly (by end February 2020, just over four weeks after applications close) 
  • No application fee

Qualification:

  • Full time degree student enrolled at a university or college in the UAE; or UAE resident who has graduated within the last five years (from any university or college, we think)
  • Applicants must be nominated by a mentor who commits to mentoring/supporting them through the whole process. Mentor can be a practising artist, a current or past tutor, a gallerist, even a client

Outcomes:

  • Winner receives:
    • $10,000 to produce the work
    • a further $5,000 from Christo himself to fund future projects, study and/ or work experience
    • exhibition of completed work at NYUAD campus in November 2020, probably followed by exhibit at Abu Dhabi Art
DeadlineWhatDetails

31 Jan 2020

Alserkal Arts Foundation Research Grants

Organiser: Alserkal Arts Foundation 
Location: Dubai
Info: website

Medium:
Research 

Key elements:

  • “Designed to support radical, innovative, and contemporary research that challenges traditional modes of practice”
  • Preference for
    • “interdisciplinary proposals, comparative studies, and societal discourses that link the arts, humanities and social sciences in the context of the MEASA”
    • proposals that “dynamically aim to disrupt conservative boundaries between conventional disciplines”
    • “broad, intersectional and experimental approaches to research”
    • applicants who can demonstrate “an imaginative and evolving practice which creates space for accessible discourse and pedagogy”
  • Examples of possible applicants: visual and sonic artists, architects, writers of fiction and non-fiction, independent publishers, documentary filmmakers and educators, geographers, historians, economists, social scientists
  • Disqualified:
    • Projects with a commercial interest or outcome
    • Projects for a political or religious entity or group
    • Projects for a registered charity, healthcare, or educational organisation
    • Projects that cannot be realised within 24 months
  • No geographical or residency restrictions
  • Individuals or groups can apply
  • Apply online with CV, portfolio, research proposal plus abstract, two letters of recommendation 
  • No application fee
  • Acceptable budget items include …
    • Equipment rental for field work
    • Rental of space/facilities for AV 
    • Services – transcription, translation, AV editing, website, etc
    • Fees – assistants, contributors, copy editors, etc
    • Printing 
    • Library and digital learning rresources 
    • Acquisition of primary archival resources
  • Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed. Notification: May-June 2020

Qualification:

  • Over 21 years
  • At least five years’ relevant experience

Outcomes:

  • Grants for individuals: up to $5,000
  • Grants for duos / collectives: up to $10,000
  • Grants for independent publishers: up to $10,000
DeadlineWhatDetails

1 Feb 2020

PLASTIC Open Call

Organiser: Tashkeel 
Location: Dubai
Info: website

Medium:
Art, Design

Key elements:

  • A response to the overuse and ubiquity of plastic: submit works for a Tashkeel exhibition in March
  • No restrictions other than the theme: works should “examine the imagined and actual, the environmental, social, economic, cultural dimensions of the plastics issue as well as aspects such as conditioning, social behavior and human psychology that have led to the wasteland engulfing us” and “drive discussions around single-use plastic, and … explore alternative solutions”
  • Works must be original
  • Individuals and groups/teams can apply
  • Shortlisted participations to be notified 6 February, work to be delivered 8 – 13 February, exhibition opens 3 March
  • No entry free
  • Submit proposals or specific works online, via downloadable form
  • Optional: propose a workshop or activity to run alongside the exhibition
  • No apparent limitation on quantity of works that can be submitted

Qualification:

  • UAE-based (presumably residency or citizen)

Outcomes:

  • Participate in PLASTIC exhibition at Tashkeel (opens 3 March)
DeadlineWhatDetails

9 Feb 2020

Expo 2020 Open Call

Organiser: Alserkal Cultural Foundation 
Location: Dubai
Info: website

Medium:
Art, Design, Craft, Photography, Fashion 

Key elements:

  • “Participate in the Expo 2020’s Art, Culture, Design and Craft Programme”
  • Wide scope – aimed at “emerging UAE based artists, designers, artisans and fashion designers” (note: no definition of what “emerging” means)
  • No specific theme, though artists are invited to submit work “inspired by the UAE’s hospitality, culture, real-life experiences, dreams and aspirations”
  • Art examples listed include: 
    • digital
    • photography
    • installation
    • performance
    • sculpture
  • Design/craft examples shown include:
    • Furniture
    • Garments
    • Accessories
    • Handmade books
  • Submit proposals or specific works online, via downloadable form
  • No apparent limitation on number of proposals or quantity of works that can be submitted

Qualification:

  • UAE-based (presumably residency or citizen)

Outcomes:

  • Works/goods displayed at Expo 2020 (from 20 Oct, for six months)
  • Unspecified portion of sale revenues remitted to artist/maker
DeadlineWhatDetails

29 Feb 2020

International Women in Photo Association (IWPA) Open Call 2020

Organiser: IWPA 
Location: international
Info: website

Medium:
Photography

Key elements:

  • Open to women photographers, amateurs or professionals, from any country
  • One winner (“laureate”) plus four runners-up selected by jury of “renowned professionals in the field of photography”
  • Enter in only one of two categories:
    • Sustainability theme
    • No theme
  • Submit a collection of up to 10 images (JPEG, min 2,500 pixels in the longest dimension at 72 dpi, max size 3MB each) 
  • No entry fee

Qualification:

  • Women only

Outcomes:

  • Traveling exhibition for five finalists and winner in cities in Europe, Asia and Middle East “such as Paris, Tokyo, or Dubai”
  • 50% of any sale revenues to photographer
  • Winner also gets …
    • a Canon camera (model unspecified as yet)
    • a six-month photojournalism course (onsite at EFTI in Madrid for three months plus three months’ distance mentoring by EFTI) to be started before the end of 2020
DeadlineWhatDetails

28 Apr 2020

Abu Dhabi Flamingo Visitor Centre

Organiser: Bee Breeders with Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD)
Location: Abu Dhabi
Info: website

Medium:
Architecture 

Key elements:

  • Design a visitor centre for the Al Wathba Wetland Reserve (complements the Flamingo Observation Tower competition of 2019)
  • The Reserve supports a rich array of wildlife – approx 4.6km2, 40km southeast of Abu Dhabi city
  • Designs must reflect the unique environment but also”have the potential to become an iconic landmark”
  • Potential:
    • schools, universities and colleges want to visit as part of their educational curriculum; few facilities now
    • potential for ecotourism, especially for bird watching
    • potential role in research of hydrology, aquatic invertebrates and ornithology
  • Facilities to be included:
    • information centre: 400m2 max
    • training room: 50 seats
    • display area: 100m2
    • café (20 seats) and kitchen
    • toilets
    • car park: 15 spaces
    • terrace
  • Max two storeys, full disabled access
  • No set budget, but aim for $7m max
  • Individuals or teams (four people max) can apply
  • Application fee $90-$140 depending on registration date (students $70-$120). Registration closes 28 April
  • Deadline for submissions: 9 June
  • Winner announced 30 June

Qualification:

  • None

Outcomes:

  • Main prizes
    • First prize $3,000 (and probable construction)
    • Second prize $1,000
    • Third prize $500
  • Also …
    • Client’s Favourite award $1.000
    • Student award $500
    • Green award $500
DeadlineWhatDetails

1 May 2020

Mega Dunes Eco Lodges

Organiser: Bee Breeders with Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD)
Location: Abu Dhabi
Info: website

Medium:
Architecture 

Key elements:

  • Create sustainable designs for approx 25 visitors’ lodges to be located throughout the UAE’s protected areas (mostly desert)
  • No specific construction materials required, but sustainability and minimal environmental impact in construction and operation are key requirements 
  • Particular focus on allowing access to Arabian oryx, but no precise site is specified so designs should be adaptable to fit different locations 
  • Three designs required:
    • standard lodge
    • VIP lodge
    • reception
  • Standard lodge specification:
    • max 50m2 floor area, max 3m height
    • accommodation for two people
    • washing faciltiies
    • sustainable air cooling system
    • skylight for stargazing
    • outdoor terrace
    • off grid utlities (water, plumbing, power generation)
  • VIP specification as above, except:
    • max 80m2 floor area, max 4.5m height
    • some higher quality features or choice of internal finishes”
  • Reception/meeting hub:
    • no max floor area defined
    • max height 4.5m
    • workspace for 1-2 receptionists
    • meeting area for 30 people indoors
    • meeting area for 15 people outdoors
    • kitchen and dining area for 40 people
    • off grid utlities (water, plumbing, power generation)
    • sustainable air cooling system
    • washing facilities
    • storage area: 16m
  • No set budget
  • Individuals or teams (four people max) can apply
  • Application fee $90-$140 depending on registration date (students $70-$120). Registration closes 1 May
  • Deadline for submissions: 10 June
  • Winner announced 2 July

Qualification:

  • None

Outcomes:

  • Main prizes
    • First prize $3,000 (and probable construction)
    • Second prize $1,000
    • Third prize $500
  • Also …
    • Client’s Favourite award $1.000
    • Student award $500
    • Green award $500
If you know of anything we should include
please email us with some information!