For Artists

Call for Proposals

A call to the Artists, Thought Leaders and Innovators of Aotearoa

From listening comes understanding 

Otairongo FB2Image:  Ōtairongo – Maree Sheehan at Artspace Aotearoa (Auckland Arts Festival 2020).
Experience this exhibition digitally here

Nau mai, haere mai! Te Ahurei Toi o Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland Arts Festival is a platform to uplift ambitious ideas to shine brightly. Our Festival draws us together, celebrates our voices and our vision, and is a reflection of our world with its many communities and perspectives.

Now, more than ever, we want to work together with the artists, thought leaders and innovators of Aotearoa to bring inspiring ideas to life: Naku te rourou nau te rourou ka ora ai te iwi.

Under the new Artistic Direction of Arts Laureate and Creative Entrepreneur Shona McCullagh, we are seeking creative projects and ideas of any artform and at any stage of development from Aotearoa’s professional artists, designers and thinkers  – emerging or established. We want to energetically support the recovery and resuscitation of our beautiful arts sector in Aotearoa, with our planned March 2021 Festival that will be very much focused on supporting work made by New Zealanders.

Genres could be design, theatre, music, dance, indoor or outdoor installations, street theatre, visual art, digital art, work in te reo Māori, work for children, communities and families; circus, cabaret, slam poetry, street art, photography, musicals and choral works, whakairo, thought leadership kōrero, online projects... or something beyond easy description! The works could take place anywhere in Auckland – forests, beaches, parks, community centres, main stages, or roam around the city. We also encourage works created by local communities, for local communities, led by artists and social innovators. 

Whether you have a work that could not proceed in 2020 due to COVID-19, a presentation-ready work for 2021 or outrageous ideas for development for 2024, we want to hear from you. We are encouraging collaboration across the Aotearoa festivals community too, so please talk to us no matter where you are from in New Zealand.

Please note, we are already in discussion with several artists and companies for 2021, and if you are one of those, you do not need to submit.

Ka timu te tai, ka pao te tōrea
When the tide recedes, the oyster catcher strikes

How do I start?
Please submit your idea through the online form HERE. To complete the form, you will need:

Artist/company contact details
CVs and/or bios of you and your key collaborators
Detailed project description (max 500 words)
Conceptual visuals of the project, if you have them
Which year you’re interested in being considered to present the project during the Festival
If you find it easier to kōrero about your project than write about it, you can also submit a 3-minute video introducing your project.

When is it due?
Monday 1 June 2020 9.00am

What happens after that?
Projects for 2021: Shona and the Festival team will prioritise considering projects for 2021. If we are interested in your project for the 2021 Festival, we will be in touch by Friday 26 June. 

2022 & beyond: The Festival team will start the conversation with you about how we could work towards presenting your new work together. This is an open-ended process, but you’ll initially hear from Festival staff by Friday 31 July.

If you have any questions at any point, you are very welcome to get in touch! In the first instance please contact Steph Walker, Head of Programming at [email protected] or 022 066 9266

The small print

  • You can submit more than one idea, or be involved in someone else’s project but they need to be submitted as separate projects
  • Please fill in as much detail as you can on the online form, particularly if you’d like to present your project in 2021.
  • As you can imagine, we would love to be able to support many more projects than we have the capacity to support. So please understand that starting a conversation doesn’t mean the Festival is saying yes to your project, but we would like to get to know you and the project better.
  • We are committed to supporting artists from New Zealand, wherever in the world they may be based.
  • Collaborations with international artists or companies, or works with their beginnings overseas are great – as long as New Zealand artists are taking the lead, and carbon footprint is minimised.
  • Let’s make this an open conversation – if you are already in conversation with other festivals, presenters or venues about this work we are keen to know. Festivals are keen to collaborate with each other and support as much work as we can.
  • The Festival is looking for a range of projects, and it will be at the discretion of the Auckland Arts Festival as to what projects it selects and what form of support it can offer these.

Click here for te reo Māori version