Open Call: 2013 Curatorial Residencies and International Curatorial Workshop

Vessel is a non-profit platform for the development of a critical discourse related to the current cultural, social, economic and political issues through the lens of contemporary art. We are interested in exploring socially engaged practices in relation to their context of emergence, to their geographies and psychogeographies, to their imbrication into fixed political ideologies, specifically in relation to Apulia and its surrounding areas such as the Mediterranean, Central Europe and Eastern Europe. Additionally, we are eager to investigate the social imagination : how its concrete products can articulate strategies of critical resistance against the current dominant neo-liberal order. Our methodology strives to incorporate a broad range of disciplines, such as geography, political science, anthropology and sociology. Through this strategy, we aim to facilitate interaction and exchange between different subjects and create a multi-centered body of knowledge that can emphasize the limits and criticality of working unilaterally (or uniquely).
Vessel is now launching open calls for its summer 2013 agenda. The focus of 2013 consists of: vessel’s participation in the 2 year Materiality project through the creation of a web-based radio that focuses on interdisciplinary cultural practitioners coming from the Apulia and the surrounding Mediterranean area, a series of curatorial residencies that allows international curators to explore their practice through the lens of the local territory and an international curatorial workshop, which allows curators from all over the world to convene in Bari and use the territory as a frame for curatorial issues, innovations and discussions. The goal of this program is to utilize a participative approach in order to create connections that inform context-specific social practice.

ICW 2013 – International Curatorial Workshop

Vessel is looking for applicants for its 3rd annual International Curatorial Workshop (3rd – 5th, June 2013). The Course will be composed of fifteen young curators from around the world. They will be offered the opportunity to work with curators and art practitioners of international reputation who have participated in projects focusing on the various forms, analysis and creation of social art practices.
ICW 2013 will be tutored by ConsonniLeone ContiniCurandi KatzMarco Degaetano – XScapeFernando Garcia DoryCarolina RitoWochen KlausurViviana ChecchiaAnna SantomauroFrancesco ScasciamacchiaCharles EscheIlaria Gianni, Viktor Misiano and Marco Petroni together with other members of vessel’s committee.
The Course consists of a single three-day workshop. It is practice oriented and conceived as an organic structure. The participants will be expected to share their experience in dealing with social practice and asked to join work groups chaired by members of the organizing team. The objectives of the curatorial course are:
- To articulate a consistent collective reflection on the contemporary role of the socially engaged art practices in the current economic, cultural and political climate
- To set up working platforms which would enable participants to develop further curatorial projects
- To encourage processes of networking among young creators in the visual art scene and the international circulation of cultural projects
Day one and day two will consist of presentations of case studies. Day three will be an open format in which participants can discuss and get advice regarding current works/projects in progress.
The focus of the workshop is socially engaged practice and its various permutations at this point in contemporary society. We are interested in practitioners that believe in socially engaged practice as a tool to support an alternate system of labor and production; i.e. long-term engagement with marginal populations and territories rather than a limited-duration exhibition. We favor projects that apply social engagement as a means of investigating public opinion and need.
Our particular geographical area is the region of Apulia in connection with our neighbors in the Balkan and Mediterranean areas. Thus, the type of projects we seek use geographically specific information to confront political, social and cultural identity of specific populations that can be connected and applied on a wider scale.
To practically analyze this phenomenon, we will use case studies of examples of regional social practice that respond to these urgencies.
Additionally, each participant will be required to bring their own case study that connects to the instances of social practice. This can include the work of people, collectives or spaces.
How to Apply to ICW 2013:
The participation in the International Curatorial Workshop is subject to a payment of 350 €. The amount will cover all the expenses for meals and residency including a single-bed hotel room and 2013 vessel’s membership. Selected applicants will be responsible for travel from their place of residence to Vessel as well as the return trip. The workshop itself is offered free of charge.
The material sent for the application will not be returned.
According to regulation of the workshop, personal data of the applicants is exclusively used for selection procedures and will not communicated to others.
Interested applicants of any nationality may apply. No study certificate and academic degree required. The course will be delivered in English: for this reason at least an intermediate level of English is required. The screen committee for selecting applicants consists of Viviana Checchia, Anna Santomauro and Francesco Scasciamacchia, curators of Vessel. The application form must be sent to by 21st April, 2013.
The applications must include:
1. Application form
Last Name:

Date of birth:

Place of birth:



Postal address:



List of studies/work experiences:
(Please attach your detailed resume to this form.)
2. A copy of the most relevant published texts and reports of realized curatorial projects.
3. A motivational statement illustrating the applicant’s interests and explaining the reason for the application (max. 5.000 characters)
4. A short statement describing the case study that would be brought to the workshop (max 1,000 characters)

Residency Program 2013

We are looking for curators to participate in a three-week residency program, between June and September (to be arranged with vessel team). The residency is centered in Bari, Italy and additionally travels to the various on-site locations of vessel’s affiliated projects. Candidates should be interested in a process-driven, multidisciplinary-focused methodology, which will give them the opportunity to investigate social practice. Specifically, curators will to interact with artists, curators and cultural operators similarly exploring these topics in the Apulia Region.
Curators will be directly involved in some of the regional projects that vessel already regularly contributes to. Contribution to these projects will be a central part of the residency in order to see (experience) methods of cultural operation in the territory, but also to inspire a fruitful exchange of methods and strategies. These aforementioned projects combine the tools of artistic projects in order to engage with reality. Art is not the final point, but rather one of the multifaceted tools that can help speak about regional topics that are not being brought to light nationally.
Current regional projects:
*Xscape, an architectural collective immersed in their BIR (Borghi in Rete) Project. The BIR project explores fascist period construction from the 1900s and its ramifications on the community currently squatting in these abandoned structures. Physical exploration of the land and process-based brainstorming are utilized with cultural operators to construct a BIR Art Map, i.e. a map consisting of potential solutions for the territory.
More information:
*Nico Angiuli is a local artist that uses dance as a research tool to investigate regional agricultural conditions.
More information:
Other opportunities within the residency include access to vessel’s artist network, project incubator and international network of collaborators. They get access to meet with owners and contributors to local galleries, art projects and cultural initiatives.
Beyond connecting with cultural and artistic initiatives, a major part of the residency involves interaction with the physical territory itself. This is a unique experience that takes place within small villages and rural settings. We are looking for practitioners who will not only enjoy these conditions, but thrive from this experience as an impetus for thinking about social practice. We want to emphasize that this region is not a major center for contemporary art. Rather, by focusing the residency in this area, curators get the chance to engage with territorial issues in a non-traditional manner. It is for those who don’t see art as a structured system, but rather as a tool for discovery.
All of the mentioned activities underline the fact that this will be a practice concerned residency. We are looking for curators that seek to explore and enhance social practice through interaction as a means of research.
The residency opportunity is free of charge. Accommodation, tools and places to work are included, although additional expenses such as travel must come from your personal funds.
We will be willing to support you for any further research fund especially if related with agency/ organisation. We had previous experience with (Goethe Institute, Fondazione Roberto Cimetta, Istituto culturale Romeno and ECF – Step Beyond).
Interested candidates must send in a CV to as well as a proposal explaining what they would specifically like to do with the residency and how it connects to their practice by 21st April, 2013.