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Bag Factory Curator Residency Open Call Sept - Nov 2021

Supported bKfW Stiftung in partnership with Triangle Network, open to curators/cultural practitioners based in Botswana, Namibia, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe

Residency dates: 1 September to 30 November 2021

Application Deadline: 19 July 2021 (10am SAST)


The residency is part of Art Connection Africa, a programme supported by KfW Stiftung in collaboration with Triangle Network, aiming to stimulate exchanges within the Southern Africa region where a number of the Triangle Network partners are located and have contributed to the development of a local art scene. The residency will offer the selected candidate an opportunity for professional development, research, and development of their cultural/curatorial practice in a dynamic context that promotes dialogue, experimentation, and innovation in the visual arts. 


The Bag Factory is an independent Non-Profit Organisation that provides a community and studio space for practicing visual artists. With a focus on exchange of ideas and innovation, Bag Factory hosts resident artists’ studios and develops a programme of international residencies, exhibitions, specialist skills workshops and audience outreach activities and events. The Bag Factory has been supporting and promoting the visual arts in South Africa since 1991. It is affiliated with the Triangle Network.

This opportunity will enable a curator/cultural practitioner (researcher, arts writer, etc with an interest in contemporary visual arts and curatorial practice) based in Botswana, Namibia, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, to undertake a fully funded residency at the Bag Factory in Johannesburg from 1 September to 30 November 2021.

The Residency

The selected candidate is offered a desk space in the office of the Bag Factory with access to the gallery and events facilities. The candidate will have the support of Bag Factory staff and artists to quickly become part of the community. They will also be encouraged to interact with local artists, curators and other arts professionals in order to expand their networks and experience the new context.


At the same time, the selected curator/cultural practitioner is expected to be driven, self-sufficient and use their initiative to ensure a successful residency.


The residency comprises:

  • Accommodation (self-contained room with own bathroom and basic kitchenette)
  • A desk space with access to other facilities to organise activities
  • Basic living expenses
  • A small budget for organising curatorial/cultural activities including talks, a conference, an exhibition, or a publication
  • Economy return flights, visa, medical insurance, and Covid-19 testing as required
  • Local travel budget
  • Administrative and peer support is also provided

Selection and Eligibility

The residency is open to curators/cultural practitioners of contemporary visual arts in all its forms and media based in Botswana, Namibia, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe and are under the age of 45. Curators/cultural practitioners with a significant track record delivering high quality projects who have not had the opportunity to work in South Africa will be prioritised. Applicants should have at least a moderate level of spoken English, and should feel comfortable engaging in (public) artistic discussions in English. It is important that all applicants research Bag Factory thoroughly before submitting their application so as to be fully aware of the context which they would, if successful, be entering.


The selected curator/cultural practitioner should be able to engage discursively and speculatively with Bag Factory’s environment and Johannesburg's wider artistic and cultural context. With this in mind, applicants should submit a project proposal within their application, outlining their specific research interests and intentions for the residency. Those who fail to submit a considered proposal that is specific to this residency and the Johannesburg/South African context will be disqualified.



  • The candidate must not have received prior funding from KfW Stiftung.
  • The residency offer is subject to the candidate being able to obtain the relevant visa and any other documentation/health screenings required to enter South Africa.
  • The residency offer is subject to Covid-19 travel restrictions in South Africa, and residency dates/travel arrangements may be changed at short notice.
  • Entry into South Africa is currently subject to the traveller producing a certificate of negative Covid-19 test result not older than 72 hours from the time of departure. 


Selection Process

The curator will be selected by a committee including representatives from Bag Factory, Triangle Network and KfW Stiftung. The successful curators only will be notified by 30 July 2021.  


Application Procedure

We accept digital applications only. Please prepare a pdf or a folder including the following information.

1. A statement describing your areas of interest and research (up to 250 words).

2. A minimum of 20 images of recent projects, with captions and a short description if necessary.

3. A CV/Resume incl. relevant exhibition if any and former residencies if any.

4. A simple statement outlining your plans, if you were to be offered the residency, which could include a short description of a research project specific to the context of Johannesburg or your residency at Bag Factory (up to 250 words). This proposal does not have to be definitive and can change during the course of the residency.

5. Any relevant documentation (e.g. articles or papers by you or your projects, etc)

6. A cover sheet with name, contact address, e-mail and telephone numbers if available, plus confirmation that you will be available from 1 September to 30 November 2021, if selected.


Applications that do not follow this format will not be considered.


Please email your application and any questions you have about the residency to: