re(situate) Biennale Delegates Program

The program will facilitate exchange of ideas, catalyse new perspectives and support the seeding of future projects and collaborations.

Biennale Delegates 2019 at the Assembly exhibition opening. Image credit: Zan Wimberley.

About the program

The Australia Council Biennale Delegates Program is a professional development opportunity for individuals based in Australia. The 2022 theme is re(situate), an offer to refocus and reposition as we step into this next era in international engagement within the visual arts.

The program will facilitate exchange of ideas, catalyse new perspectives and support the seeding of future projects and collaborations. This edition will counterpoint the prevailing legacies of foundational biennale models with emergent and regionally specific modes of practice tethered to the Asia Pacific region.

Participants will connect to:

  • 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia (online)
  • Hawaiʻi Triennial (online)
  • Documenta 15 (online)
  • The Biennale of Sydney (face-to-face)

Through a series of online and face-to-face activities, participants will explore the following provocations:

  • What are the necessary mandates for contemporary art biennales in this next era of international engagement?
  • What is/can be your position of engagement or disruption with contemporary art biennales?

A diverse group of 19 emerging creative and cultural workers from across Australia have been announced as participants of the Australia Council Biennale Delegates Program.

The program’s theme is ‘re(situate)’ and will focus on unpacking different biennale engagement approaches within an Australian and regional context. The participants will connect with artists and teams presenting the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, Hawaiʻi Triennial, Documenta 15 and The Biennale of Sydney.

Learn more

An online gathering in January 2022 will launch the program. Participants will then engage in online labs between March and May 2022, featuring invited national and international creative practioners. These labs will allow participants to have conversations on learnings and approaches to practice, they will be a place for process driven discussions

The program will end with a face-to-face residency in NSW, Australia in June 2022. The residency will allow participants to develop an outcome that they can share with the re(situate) cohort and sector peers.

You will need to commit to ten days of engagement with the program between January, and March through to June 2022.

Participants will co-design program activities with the Australia Council and industry facilitators. To support the co-design of program activities applicants must nominate a maximum of three focus areas:

Self-determined First Nations conversations on international visual arts practice.

This focus area is for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants only.

Exploring the approaches to global diasporic perspectives within contemporary visual arts practice.

Establishing links and meetings with independent and collective arts spaces across bienniale models.

Exposure to international arts criticism approaches, networks and platforms.

Inclusive and emergent models of audience engagement.

Approaches to seeking philanthropic support for contemporary art events.

Mentorship for technical producers interested in delivering major international exhibitions.

International digital arts practice.

This program is for creative and cultural workers who:

  • are early-career – within five to ten years of practice.
  • are interested in implementing change in arts practice towards methodologies that embed reciprocity, sustainability and connection.
  • want to develop and expand their connections and understanding of significant international contemporary art platforms.
  • want to respond to shared global challenges to benefit Australian creative practice and approach to international engagement.
  • wish to identify future international projects or collaborations.

We encourage applications from the full spectrum of the visual arts industry. This includes but is not limited to cultural producers, writers, technical producers, philanthropy coordinators, artists, engagement and community development and curators.

We recognise the privilege of international engagement can be inaccessible to people with lived experiences of marginalisation.

We are committed to providing a program that offers inclusive, self-determined and safe participation. We prioritise applications from First Nations peoples, culturally and linguistically diverse people, people with disability, LGBTIQA+ people, regionally based people and the intersections across these.

Focus areas that are nominated for First Nations peoples will be facilitated by First Nations industry facilitators to ensure sovereign and culturally safe participation. Non-indigenous participants will also be offered the opportunity to further develop their allyship skills to be able to empower and advocate for self-determined First Nations arts and cultural practice.

  • Successful applicants will receive a $2,500 micro-grant to facilitate a program outcome.

NSW residency support:

  • $1,000 to cover the cost of daily expenses for five days.
  • Reimbursement for a return economy flight if you are based interstate
  • Reimbursement for five nights of accommodation.
  • Participation insurance

Additional support needs including any accessibility support, interpreting and childcare will be provided on a case by case basis. We encourage you to speak to us about any specific access needs or support you may require to ensure you can equitably participate in this program.

The Biennale Delegates Program is a co-investment initiative with state and territory arts funding agencies. Thank you to the generous support of:

Create NSW, Creative Victoria, Culture and the Arts WA through Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries, Arts NT, Arts Tasmania, Arts Qld, Arts South Australia and artsACT.

Additional access support for successful applicants has been made possible through the generosity of the Cross Family Foundations.

You can apply if:

  • you are based in Australia
  • you are an Australian citizen or an Australian permanent resident or a New Zealand citizen with a special category visa
  • you are an individual.

You can’t apply if:

  • you have an overdue grant report to the Australia Council
  • you owe money to the Australia Council
  • you are an organisation.

Click on the ‘Apply Now’ button at the top of this page.

The application form requires you to nominate a minimum of one and a maximum of three focus areas from the list above and submit three support material items.

Support material items:

  1. A single page pdf file or a link to an audio file or a video file responding to the following two questions:
    • How will this program contribute to the development of your practice? (250 words maximum)
    • What do you wish to explore while participating in this program? (250 words maximum)

Audio and video submissions should be a maximum of three (3) minutes in length. Please upload audio or video submissions under the support material section of the application form. Audio and video format submissions are not mandatory but encouraged.

  1. A one page CV illustrating your work experience and involvement in relevant projects.
  2. A link or single page of one example of a project or activity you have completed or are working on that is relevant to the program.

Please refer to our How to apply page for further information and guidance on support material upload requirements.

Applications will be assessed by Australia Council staff and industry advisors with a final review by participating states and territories.

Council will assess applications against the following assessment criteria:

  • Relevance: The timeliness and impact of the program for the applicant.
  • Leadership: An active and/or reflective approach to Australian and international visual arts practice and/or sector development.

Assessments will be completed in a two step process:

  • Stage 1: Internal shortlist by Australia Council staff
  • Stage 2: Final selection with states and territories and industry advisors

Notification: End November 2021

Clothilde Bullen

Clothilde Bullen is a Wardandi (Nyoongar) and Badimaya (Yamatji) curator who is currently the Senior Curator, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Collections and Exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia. Clothilde is the Chair of the Board of the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA), and is a current Board member for the Australian charter of the International Association for Art Critics. She is also a Museums and Histories Board member for Create NSW and is an Alumni member of the British Council Accelerate Scholarship for Indigenous Leadership in the Arts.

Angie Abdilla

Angie Abdilla is a Palawa/Trawlwoolway woman based in Sydney. She founded Old Ways, New in 2016, and created the methodology, Country Centered Design, to support working with Indigenous knowledges and systems in the design of places, experiences and deep technologies. As a consultant, she works as a designer and as a published researcher, she presents on topics such as Indigenous design in the built environment and human technology interrelations in places such as the United Nations. Angie co-founded the international Indigenous Protocols and Artificial Intelligence working group (IP//AI) and is an Advisor for Woman in AI.

Léuli Eshrāghi

Léuli Eshrāghi is a Sāmoan/Persian/Cantonese interdisciplinary artist, writer, curator and researcher working between Australia and Canada. Ia/they intervene in display territories to centre global Indigenous and Asian diasporic visuality, sensual and spoken languages, and ceremonial-political practices. Through performance, moving image, writing and installation, la/they engage with Indigenous futurities as haunted by ongoing militourist and missionary violences that once erased faʻafafine-faʻatane people from kinship and knowledge structures. Ia/they contribute to growing international critical practice across the Great Ocean and North America through residencies, exhibitions, publications, courses and rights advocacy

Neha Kale

Neha Kale is a widely published writer, journalist and critic.  She has been writing about art and contemporary culture for over a decade and her essays, criticism, features and reportage have appeared in mainstream and independent Australian and international publications. Neha has participated and featured in many festivals and cultural programs. She was formerly editor and editor-at-large of VAULT magazine.

Khaled Sabsabi

Khaled Sabsabi is an artist who migrated with his family to Australia in 1978 following the outbreak of civil war in Lebanon. They settled in Western Sydney, where Sabsabi now lives and works. Since the late 1980s Sabsabi has worked with communities, particularly those in Western Sydney, to create and develop arts programs and projects that explore the complexities of place, displacement, identity and ideological differences associated with migrant experiences and marginalisation. He see’s art as an effective tool to communicate with people, through a familiar language.