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Pro Helvetia Johannesburg Breathing Space Grant 2020

Pro Helvetia Johannesburg Breathing Space Grant 2020

Country: South Africa
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Pro Helvetia Johannesburg calls application for Breathing Space Grant 2020. Moving beyond the normal funding instruments, the present call both supports entirely new ideas and initiatives, as well as the amplification or extension of what arts practitioners are already doing in response to these changing circumstances. The program is also open to proposals that involve the exploration of new formats and approaches as well as projects that use this moment of global rupture to engage more deeply with or interrogate older methods and practices and archives – or indeed to do both. Analog and digital approaches are equally welcome. It is not expected that proposals should address COVID–19 at the level of theme or content.

The call intends to open up opportunities to experiment with new possibilities and formats for artistic production, exchange, collaboration, presentation, and reception, responsive to the complex demands of the present time at both a very local and global level. While the connection to the Swiss art scene is welcome, it is not a requirement of this call: the interest of reaching Space Grant is more in enabling local possibilities on the subcontinent that could in the future provide a basis for exchange and connection with the Swiss art scene and cultural field more generally.


  • Pro Helvetia Johannesburg Breathing Space Grant is open to artists, collectives and organizations from across the African continent, excluding North Africa (which is covered by a parallel call from Cairo office). Applicants should be actively involved in the professional arts field on the subcontinent.  
  • Open to all disciplines that Pro Helvetia is active in – music, performing arts, visual arts, literature, design and interactive media, and inter-disciplinary work. Note that cinematographic film (long form, short form and documentary content for cinematic screening or televisual broadcastis excluded from Pro Helvetia’s mandate. 
  • Activities covered by the grant should be completed and reported on by the end of April 2021. 
  • Only one application per individual/organization. 
  • Requests should be between CHF 2 000 and CHF 10 000 in value (circa US$ 2100 – US$10 500). The more precise, specific, and clear the budget is in relation to what you are trying to achieve, the better. 
  • The organizers are not in a position to cover the general salaries and running costs of organizations and institutions, beyond a reasonable project administrative fee which may be included in the budget proposal (normally not more than 10% of the overall budget). Artists and other project-specific specialist fees may however be included as eligible costs.

Selection Criteria 

  • Clarity of purpose, intended outcome/s, and methods? (Is it clear what you won’t do and why?)
  • Originality in concept and methods, artistic quality, and relevance (Will the project contribute something new and significant to the field in concept and approach? Will the project have a life beyond the immediate stage covered by the grant?)
  • Track record and professionalism of the applicant and their network (Will the project be professionally executed?)

Application Materials 

  • A concept note, of not more than 4 000 characters, summarising the Why? What? How? Who? dimensions of the project  
  • An indicative timeline and budget 
  • Please use the downloadable Applicant Budget Template. If your application is successful, this template can also be used for reporting. 
  • Information on the applicant, and any other individual or organizational partners involved. 
  • If relevant, the applicant should indicate how local COVID-19 related public health and safety measures will be applied. 

Application Procedure

  • The call is open until 31 August 2020 
  • Applications should be made through the online portal myprohelvetia.ch 



Type of Opportunity Exchange Programs
Deadline31 August,2020
CountrySouth Africa
Open toAll
OrganizerPro Helvetia Johannesburg
Contact the organizer[email protected]



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