Contested Desires_OPEN CALL_web




Join the conversation: exploring colonial heritage through contemporary art 

Embark on a transformative journey with CONTESTED DESIRES: Constructive Dialogues (CDCD)  

Are you a visual artist based in Italy passionate about unravelling the layers of our shared colonial past and its impact on contemporary culture? This is your chance to be part of a groundbreaking transnational initiative funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union. 

About CDCD 

Step into a realm of exploration where artists, cultural organisations, and communities come together to delve into the complexities of our colonial legacy. Contested Desires: Constructive Dialogues is a pioneering transnational project, consisting of 19 global partners, aiming to unravel the influence of our shared colonial past on cultural identities today. From Italy to Ghana, Tunisia to the UK, CDCD discovers the connections between our past and present, fostering dialogue and understanding across diverse perspectives. 

What we offer 

  • An immersive experience with international residencies, exhibitions, and knowledge exchange workshops to take place between September 2024 and November 2026 (artists are expected to participate fully in the program). 
  • Project fee, as specified in the call (plus covered travel, accommodations, per diems, and production materials).


This Open Call is to select two visual artists based in Italy based on: 

  • Quality of artistic practice 
  • Quality of response to the questions in the application form 
  • Experience of participatory and socially engaged practice 
  • Experience of collaboration with other artists and across sectors 
  • Demonstrable interest in the role of contemporary arts in heritage contexts, with reference to the themes of the programme 

Equity, diversity and equality  

  • We seek to ensure that no present or potential artist or project participant is treated less favourably than another on grounds of race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, gender identity, marital or civil partnership status, disability, sexual orientation, religious or political beliefs, age, social class or offending background. 
  • While our ambition is to shape an open, accessible project, we also acknowledge that the nature of this project involves extended periods of travel, which may present barriers to participation. 
  • If you have access requirements to enable you to participate in the CDCD programme you will be able to identify this in the application form. If you need access support to be able to make your application, please contact [email protected]

Sustainable art vision 

The CDCD project prioritises environmental sustainability through self-regulatory ethical guidelines, alignment with global standards like the Sustainable Development Goals, and promoting eco-philosophy for artistic inspiration. The project monitors and assesses adherence to ethical guidelines while enhancing awareness of the interconnectedness between art and sustainability.  


Participatory and socially engaged visual arts practices. Selected artists will be encouraged to create ephemeral and mobile works that are environmentally conscious and that can be adapted to be site-specific to each place. 

How to apply: 

Visit the link below to access the Artist Brief and take your first step toward joining CDCD’s transformative journey: 

Application deadline: 7 May, 2024 

Embrace this opportunity to challenge the narratives of the past and co-create more inclusive futures through contemporary art. We’re committed to fostering equity, diversity, and equality in every aspect of our project. 

For updates and other opportunities, follow us on and 

#ContestedDesires #ArtForChange #DecolonizeCulture #Europe #Colonialism #Community #CapacityBuilding #Dialogue 

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