Open calls

This page tells you about any open calls we might be currently running and also informs you of our policy regarding open calls. Please do read everything here, it hopefully makes it all clear and reading it all now should hopefully save your time (and ours).

CURRENT OPEN CALLS

The next group show with an open call element is an on-line group show called Book

Deadline for submissions is end of day Friday 11th February 2022 but please do go down the page and read it ALL properly.

Book will be another carefully curated artist-led online group show brought to you once more by Cultivate. Book will be the second online contemporary exhibition of 2022 with an open call element . Once again most of the artists will be directly invited but the open call element and hearing from artists we don’t know yet is important. The previous show featured 43 artists from all over the land and the globe, around 24 ofthem came via the open call. We are very picky, our door is open though, new artistic blood is important. This will be the 19th online exhibition from Cultivate and we think, if we’ve counted it right, the 172nd Cultivate art show in all.

Please read all of this, I know how long it is but it will save us all time. You’d be amazed at how many people don’t bother reading these things and just send us tedious photographs of red telephone boxes taken on their phone or pieces of digital/video art and then get all hissy pissy with is when we say no


Book will open online at 7pm on Tuesday February 22nd hosted once again on the Organ magazine website at www.organthing.com.  We will once again be personally inviting the majority of the artists, but as always the flow of artistic new blood is very important. There is an open call aspect, and we would like to have at least a dozen artists we don’t actually know yet, we also welcome those who have shown with us before to submit again. Please do check out one of the the recent previous online shows here on the Organ website to get a flavour of what we do and what we’re looking for, one of the most recent online show with an open call element was the Still show, or go check out the Alright? show or January’s Deflect show.

Theme? Normally we say we don’t need a theme, just art that excites us enough to want to share it but this tiem we do, the show is called Book, we invite artists to submit work with that title in mind.  Pieces that feature books, paintings of book, installation pieces, sletch books, who knows what, you’veviewed out shows, you can get an idea

Once again, as with the previous online shows, we are looking for exciting painters, installation artists, 3D artists, in fact Book is open to artists of all disciplines besides photography or digital/video art (nothing against either discipline and there are plenty of online outlets for both, this online show is notreally about digital art or photography although we might invite a photographer ot two we have worked with before). The one thing we really don’t want is a flat lifeless image of a painting, have a look at one of the the last show, go grab a flavour and a feel, make your image feel like a piece of art hanging on a gallery wall.  We had a lot of what you might call polite illustration last time, please do check out some of the recent online shows such as Alright? or Recultivate, polite illustration is not really what we’re about. And and and, this is important, the images do have to work in terms of an on-line exhibition, badly taken shots of an instillation or your painting will not work for us 

If you wish to be considered for Book then simply submit no more than five images  with titles and a link to your artist website. The minimum requirement for this online show is that you have a working, well maintained up-to-date artist website that we can link to so people can find out more about you – a working website mind you, not just a Facebook page or an instagram account that full of photos from your last birthday party or what your cat had for dinner today or heaven forbid one of those dreadful Saatchi pages, (an Instagram page that is mostly focused on your art or a Facebook Artist page is more than fine).

The call is open to anyone from anywhere on the planet. There are no fees or costs involved, we’re not paying anything in terms of gallery rents and such for this one so why would we even dream of charging our fellow artists just to open an email? Some galleries or curators or indeed some of our artists might think the practice is okay and exploiting artists like that is fine but  we detest the practice.  Sure, there’s a fair bit of our time involved but hey, we really really (really) don’t like galleries who charge for just opening an email and then claim it to be admin costs, why should anyone ever pay to submit to a show they’re might not even get to take part in?  All we ask from you, and this is an important bit, is that if you are selected or invited that you put up links and proactively share details on your own websites and properly on your social media feeds, a little more than just a 24 hour”story”, post it properly (frankly if you don’t share the link and carry the news on your art pages then you won’t be asked back, I think that’s fair, we will check and if you didn’t bother last time then why should we ask you back when you submit again this time?)

If you wish to submit to Book then please do. Once you do we promise to get back as soon as we can, usually within four or five working days (probably faster) with a yes or no, if it is a yes we’ll come back and ask for all the details we need) if it is a no then we will try and take the time to tell you why, as artists ourselves there’s nothing we hate more than a rude cut ‘n paste rejection.

Deadline is end of day Friday 11th February 2022. Don’t be leaving it until the last minute though, you have more chance if you don’t leave it to the very last minute and the rush from everyone else. We have put this call up a whole month ahead of the deadline,hopefully that gicves you time to react.

Once again the show is being curated by the Cultivate team of Sean Worrall and Emma Harvey. We are first and foremost working artists. We opened Cultivate because we really didn’t like the often very cynical way most galleries were treating us artists,  we like to be treated the way you as artists expect to be treated. Cultivate is an artist-led thing, please leave any art school attitudes outside the front door. We are very much about letting people in but we are very very picky, if we say no, we will politely tell you why rather than just send you a standard rejection. If we say no, it is mostly a reflection of our personal tastes – first, above all else, we need to feel what you do is right for this group show and that being part of the show is right for both you and us, some art really works in an online context, some art simply doesn’t…

One more thing, we have noticed some people have a habit of submitting the same art as the art we rejected last time, please don’t.  There’s one guy who submits the same painting to every call we ever put up here, we keep telling him why we’re saying no, we’ll probably just hit the decline button for him this time, there are only so many hours in the day. Do please look at the previous shows, it will save us all lots of time.

Thanks for reading all this, we look forward to hearing from you. sorry if some of it sounds heavy handed, we’re just trying to explain things…

Submissions via e.mail to info at cultivategallery dot com and clearly marked OPEN CALL  in the subject line please

Deadline for submissions is end of day Friday 11th February 2022

thanks  Sean/Emma, Cultivate

The policy on open calls:  We like open call shows, the kind that don’t require you to have to pay a fee just to submit an e.mail of course, open calls are something we are very keen on at Cultivate. Of course it was easy to run open call shows regularly when we had a permanent home, our current nomadic lifestyle doesn’t really lend itself to the notion of open calls so well. Do watch this space though, we will have open call gallery shows happening (there have been several physical shows with open call elements already this year), there will be opens calls from time to time and we do appreciate how important both group shows and open calls are, we like open calls and group shows.

And remember, any open call that asks you to pay JUST to submit and e.mail is really something of a cynical con designed to exploit young artists who don’t know the score, these shows are almost certainly going to be a waste of your time and money, they’re enrally badly run by cynical people more interested in your money than your art, don’t be suckered in to paying just to submit an e.mail, follow that link you just passed for lots more thought on the subject

For the sake of clarity: We STRONGLY object to open calls that demand a fee just to submit an e.mail image to a selection process. As artists we strongly vocally object to being charged just to take part in an often dubious on-line selection process and here at Cultivate we will NEVER demand a submission fee from an artist just to send in an e.mail in the hope of maybe being selected.  The practice is cynical, it exploits artists and it is simply wrong.  When we do put on group shows we will sometimes ask artists who are ACTUALLY TAKING PART to contribute a reasonable share to the costs, to help contribute to the rent/space hire expenses and such, only those who are invited to ACTUALLY TAKE PART though, and NEVER the many who don’t make it past the submission process.  We will not work with galleries or artists who are involved in running these cynical pay just to submit open calls and we believe all artists should voice a loud vocal no to anyone who does wish to charge a cynical submission fee just to be part of a selection process. If as an artist you knowingly work with these galleries then we don’t want to work with you.

RESPONSE POLICY:   Policy when we do have an open call is to set a deadline and stick to it. We encourage people to not wait until the last minute and we do like to respond as soon as we can so artists know their submission has reached us. We will say yes or no as soon as we can rather than make people wait. Generally if we haven’t replies with a a yes or no within a week of you submitting work then we haven’t received it.  Some of our open calls can result in hundreds and hundreds of responses, we don’t like to let it all build up and then have an impossible task once the deadline has passed. if you do it early you stand more chance and we get more time to consider what the work submitted as well as explore your websites and such (we always do that, indeed we’ve often found something more suitable on a website or thought about people for alternative shows)

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