The British Council and the South African Department of Arts and Culture are launching an open call for proposals from artists and institutions to be part of the SA-UK Seasons project, a shared programme of activities, opportunities and communications. Selected proposals will receive a grant to activate existing relationships or create new connections within the arts. The call for submissions will run from 14 October until 23 November 2014.
The SA-UK Seasons project will build on arts initiatives already developed by the British Council Connect ZA programme, which connects the creative communities of the UK and South Africa, and the South African Season in the UK. The Seasons will create a platform for the arts communities in SA and UK to cooperate and collaborate and the awarding of grants to artists and arts institutions aims to strengthen cultural relationships through work in the visual arts, theatre, dance, cinema, literature, music, creative economy and skills development.
Tom Porter, Programme Manager, British Council Connect ZA said: “The SA-UK Seasons 2014 & 2015 is creating further opportunities for new connections and collaborations between the UK and South African creative sectors that have already started to make an impact through the British Council Connect ZA programme. Through the Seasons we aim to provide a platform for artists and arts organisations to present works in both countries; and to establish a shared thinking on arts, culture and creative industry issues, building partnerships and opportunities.”
Bongani Tembe, Commissioner-General of the SA Seasons in the UK, said: “”We aim to positively influence each other and establish a shared thinking on arts, culture and creative industry issues as well as build partnerships around opportunities for both our countries’ artists and arts institutions. We are particularly looking at alleviating the challenges of job creation, promoting innovation and nurturing leadership of the arts for the future.”
There are three funding strands available. The first strand is the application for a partnership support grant where projects must demonstrate a strong delivery partnership between established organisations in UK & SA. Preference will be given to applications from partners with a track record of working internationally. For this option grants are available for a maximum of 50% of the project cost.
The second strand is the application for a creative catalyst grant which supports those projects that need assistance to broker, support and develop new projects and partnerships that will benefit from a small-scale budget for travel and/or scoping. Applications for this endorsement are encouraged to explore new connections, demonstrate innovation and aim to establish deeper collaborations and partnerships in the future. In this category available grants will cover a maximum of 80% of the project cost. The last strand is for the official endorsement of a project to be included in the Seasons programme schedule. This endorsement does not have a grant attached to it however, endorsed projects will benefit from the overall marketing and publicity of the Seasons.
Interested artists and arts organisations in the fields of the visual arts, theatre, dance, cinema, literature, music, creative economy and skills development in the arts can apply. Entries must be submitted online at http://southafrica-unitedkingdom.com/ before 23 November 2014.
Project proposals will be reviewed by a technical team including Bongani Tembe, Commissioner-General for the SA Seasons in the UK and Tom Porter, Programme Manager, British Council Connect ZA. The final judging and selection will be made by a Joint Organising Committee made up of SA and UK officials and co-chaired by Ms Thandiwe January-McLean (former Ambassador to Portugal) on the South Africa side and Rt Hon Baroness Usha Prasha (Deputy Chair of the British Council) on the UK side.
All projects selected by the joint organising committee will be integrated into the Seasons’ programming and will benefit from the overall marketing and PR campaign of the SA-UK Seasons 2014 & 2015.