CALL FOR EXHIBITION AND PROJECT PROPOSALS FOR PROJECT SPACE’s 2021 SEASON: BRIGHT FUTURES

Application Deadline: December 15, 2019, 11:59 PM

Lukaza Branfman-Verissimo,  Storyteller 2  and  Altar Objects:  Photographed in collaboration with Azha Luckman, digital and film inkjet print, Ed 1 of 1 + 1AP, 30 x 40 in., each. Dice, Candles, & Fabric, dimensions variable. Installation view from  CURRICULUM  (curated by Stamatina Gregory and Jeanne Vaccaro, January 16-March 16, 2019)

Lukaza Branfman-Verissimo, Storyteller 2 and Altar Objects: Photographed in collaboration with Azha Luckman, digital and film inkjet print, Ed 1 of 1 + 1AP, 30 x 40 in., each. Dice, Candles, & Fabric, dimensions variable. Installation view from CURRICULUM (curated by Stamatina Gregory and Jeanne Vaccaro, January 16-March 16, 2019)

EFA Project Space is seeking letters of inquiry for curated exhibitions, projects, and public events to be presented as part of its 2021 season on the theme of BRIGHT FUTURES. We invite curators, artists, writers, collectives, cultural producers, instigators, and thinkers of all kinds to submit preliminary ideas for thought-provoking exhibitions or projects (including performances, lectures, workshops, skillshares, seances, seminars and conversations) to be produced in partnership with EFA Project Space, a multidisciplinary arts venue located at EFA Center on West 39th Street in Midtown Manhattan. 

About the Theme:

EFA Project Space will devote its 2020 and 2021 programming seasons to "BRIGHT FUTURES,"* a thematically curated series of exhibitions, public events, seminars, and workshops that tie together New York’s diverse communities and promote art as a force for social change.

To embrace a "bright future"  is to rebuff the current mood of political, social, and ecological despair. As a response to the interwoven global political and planetary crises that we collectively face, “BRIGHT FUTURES" proposes a need to recenter art around community-based and future-looking practices that engage with politics and poetics, and fuse belief and praxis in the promise of a better world. These practices are decolonial, anti-exploitative, anti-extractive, and promote justice, democracy, collaboration, care, repair, access, migration, and mutual aid against top down hegemonic and authoritarian political structures; they are formally exploratory and interdisciplinary, combining untried tactics with a focus on process and method. To explore: conflict, resolution, cohesion, reparation, fugue, survival, now utopias, other futurisms, new formalisms, alternative hedonisms, counter-subjectivities, etc.

*With credit due to the bright work of artist and curator Lukaza Branfman-Verissimo, a collaborator in Project Space’s 2018 and 2019 seasons, and curator of the 2018 Endless Biennial (December, 2018) on the theme of Optimism.

Specifics:

Applicants may submit a letter of inquiry for one of the following (and only one):

  • Exhibitions – will be presented over 6 to 8 weeks and may include up to 10 artists, but may also be conceived as shorter-term exhibitions or 2 or 3 person shows that respond to our curatorial theme. Exhibitions should compliment Project Space’s mission and present an appropriate use of the space.

  • Projects – one-off or multi-day public events that may include: solo artist performances (both curated by a curator or proposed by the artist), workshops, skillshares & learning sites, seminars, panel discussions, conversations, etc. Projects should compliment Project Space’s mission and present an appropriate use of the space.

Timeframe:

Letters of inquiry are due by December 15, 2019. Submissions will be reviewed by our Advisory Committee and invited guest jurors. Selected applicants will be invited in late January to submit a full proposal by March 1, 2020; from those, selected exhibitions and projects will be scheduled between January-December, 2021.

EFA Project Space is especially excited to support:

  1. artist-curated exhibitions that represent important developments from within the broader arts field;

  2. representatives of diverse and inclusive communities that are not traditionally supported in mainstream arts institutions;

  3. joint collaborations with arts organizations and collectives whose missions intersect with our own, or that create space for conversation across disciplines and communities;

  4. independent curator-led projects that construct deep conceptual and theoretical frameworks;

  5. individuals or collectives with an established background in one subset of the arts field (writers, artists, administrators) who wish to take part in a curatorial incubator for first time curators;

  6. process based exercises, encouraging experimentation through the creation of new work;

  7. dynamic, interactive projects that challenge the standard exhibition format while reaching the broadest possible audience.

Before you apply:

  • Review EFA Project Space’s website to familiarize yourself with past exhibitions, events, and projects.

  • Check our list of what we can and cannot provide (see appendix below)

  • Consider the scale and demands of your project proposal, keep in mind that EFA Project Space is a small organization with just 2 full time staff. Exhibition budgets average between $7,000.00 and $8,000.00 (but are decided each year), and projects will be capped at $2000. Curators of exhibitions receive an honorarium of approximately $1,500.00. EFA Project Space is W.A.G.E. certified and is committed to paying honoraria to all artists. In general, exhibition or project budgets cannot provide for travel, international shipping, or elaborate construction/fabrication costs. Note: you are not expected to submit a budget for the letter of inquiry, but should keep the above in mind before you apply.

  • Understand that given our limited space and time in the exhibition season, solo artist exhibitions will generally not be supported, nor will curated exhibitions where a curator is also presenting their own visual arts work. (We will accept solo project/performance proposals, however.)

Application Deadline: December 15, 2019, 11:59 PM

>> Submit your application via Submittable <<

About EFA Project Space:

EFA Project Space, a program of the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, was launched in 2008 as a public forum to catalyze the transformative potential of the artistic process. Project Space provides an open and flexible platform for investigating ideas and encouraging risk-taking, experimentation, and new partnerships that push the boundaries of art in everyday life. Project Space functions as social space that invites a growing community to engage intimately with challenges to the way we view, make, present, and support diverse artistic practices. Project Space supports interplay between imagination and rigorous critical thinking, and is a place for democratic dialogue across artistic disciplines, backgrounds, and communities.

The Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts (EFA) is a 501(c)(3) public charity. Through its three core programs, EFA Studios, EFA Project Space, and EFA Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop, EFA is dedicated to providing artists across all disciplines with space, tools and a cooperative forum for the development of individual practice. EFA is a catalyst for cultural growth, stimulating new interactions between artists, creative communities, and the public.

Find us online at http://projectspace-efanyc.org
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/efaprojectspace/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/efaprojectspace
Facebook: http://facebook.com/efaprojectspace

EFA Project Space’s Advisory Committee is comprised of NYC-based and international professional artists, curators, writers, arts administrators, museum workers, and others engaging in the fields of visual and performing arts.

The Application

To be submitted through Submittable by 11:59 PM on December 15, 2019.

  • Name (your name or primary contact for a collective)

  • Email

  • Website (optional)

For exhibitions

  • Please provide a description of the proposed exhibition. In addition to the curatorial premise, please address the following questions: How does the exhibition or project respond to our Open Call theme? How would you intend to activate the space at EFA over the course of the exhibition? (800 words)

  • List two past EFA Project Space exhibitions, projects, or performances  that interest you, and explain why (200 words)

  • Who are your (if any) collaborators and/or what (if any) community-based groups might you intend to reach out to involve in this project/exhibition?  You needn't have contacted either at this point, but we’re interested in how you might conceive of a collaborator or co-sponsor of the project. (150 words)

  • Are you applying in order to participate in our curatorial incubator (will this be your first time curating an exhibition?)  If yes, why? (100 words)

For projects

  • Please provide a description of the proposed project and how it responds to our Open Call theme. (250 words)

  • What type of event or project are you proposing? (selection)

  • Duration/amount of time needed (up to two weeks, including prep/rehearsal time)

  • Rough budget needed to produce this event (amount only)

For both

  • Please provide email and phone numbers for two references who may be contacted in the event your letter of inquiry is selected. Note: we will notify you before contacting your references. Ideally, these are people who know you and your work well and can speak to why you would be a good fit for EFA Project Space’s program.

Materials Requested 

For exhibitions

  • A preliminary artist list (6 - 10 artists for exhibitions, 2-3 key artist/participants for projects)

  • The artist list should be accompanied by one work sample per artist (image or video link, if video, max 2 minutes per link) and a one sentence description/caption.

For projects

  • Up to five work samples (image or video link, if video, max 2 minutes per link) and a one sentence description/caption.

For both

  • Applicant/curator’s CV formatted as a PDF.

Appendix - What Project Space Can and Cannot Provide:

For Selected Project and/or Exhibitions, EFA Project Space Can Provide:

  • An accessible 2,500 square foot exhibition / event space in central Manhattan

  • Curator and artists fees, determined by scope of programming and type of participation

  • Modest and fixed production budget for transport, display, or creation of new work

  • Installation tools and access to a professional preparator 

  • A selection of podiums, monitors, projectors, and media players

  • Assistance with the planning and implementation of public programming

  • Access to and assistance with consumer grade PA system, speakers, and basic video projection

  • Allocated honoraria for artist and curator talks, performances and screenings

  • FedEx ground shipments within the US for work that has its own packaging / crating

  • Basic photo and video documentation

  • Advertising and online promotion

  • Partnership and sponsorship outreach, cross-promotion, and press cultivation

  • Assistance with fundraising for additional needs

  • A modest printed or digital/online publication

EFA Project Space Cannot Provide:
Due to budgetary and logistical limitations, additional/outside sources of funding, including grants, corporate or academic sponsors, or private funders, will be required to support additional needs, including:

  • Production of exhibitions and events that do not clearly address the above theme

  • Exhibitions with more than 10 artists

  • Projects that require EFA staff to source materials and execute artists’ works for them

  • Transportation and care of precious and valuable works and/or that have custom display requirements

  • Travel and accommodations

  • Rental or acquisition of high-end tech equipment not included in our inventory(i.e. large digital displays, professional sound systems)

Questions? Email projectspace@efanyc.org.

Note: due to the expected number of applicant/questions, we invite you to contact us and ask questions early to ensure that we have time to reply before the application deadline. Questions sent day-of the deadline should be limited to technical issues with the submittable application only.

*With credit due to the bright work of artist and curator Lukaza Branfman-Verissimo, a collaborator in Project Space’s 2018 and 2019 seasons, and curator of the 2018 Endless Biennial (December, 2018) on the theme of Optimism.


Application Deadline: December 15, 2019, 11:59 PM

>> Submit your application via Submittable <<