Opportunities > Prince Claus Mentorship Awards 2021
26 Aug 2021

Prince Claus Mentorship Awards 2021

In partnership with the Goethe Institut, the Prince Claus Fund announces an Open Call for the Prince Claus Mentorship Awards: Cultural & Artistic Responses to Environmental Change. Artists and cultural practitioners from and based in the Fund's working countries are eligible to apply.

This mentorship is a year-long interdisciplinary programme that creates space for artists and cultural practitioners to explore critical artistic practices on the intersection of arts and environmentalism.

Alarming changes in nature and our environment are all around us: forests and wildlife are disappearing; air and oceans are increasingly polluted; sea levels are rising; and extreme weather phenomena are escalating; additionally the outbreak of a worldwide pandemic has been a wake-up call. While causes and consequences of environmental change and the climate crisis are being debated by politicians, scientists and the broader public, the most affected people are often those least heard. 

Artists and cultural practitioners across the world are setting up initiatives and rethinking responses to environmental change and the climate crisis. Now, more than ever, we need the arts and culture to help us respond; to inspire and motivate us by challenging our perceptions, encouraging us to change our habits by introducing intersectional and trans-disciplinary perspectives, and centering indigenous forms of knowledge and ways of living to envision alternative models of climate justice in the world. 

Since 2018 the Goethe-Institut and Prince Claus Fund have been supporting artists and cultural practitioners working on the intersection of the arts, environmental change and the climate crisis – supporting a total of 54 exceptional initiatives from around the world, examples of which are presented in the online exhibition Take Me To The River. We are now building on this experience and launching this exciting new mentorship programme through which we solidify our joint commitment to addressing the climate emergency.

The mentorship brings together 12 emerging artists and cultural practitioners (± 8-15 years of relevant professional experience) with 4 mentors, all working across a range of disciplines and environmental issues in a year-long programme aimed at accelerating engaged cultural practices and fostering leadership. These 12 individuals each develop a body of work, form a peer group, and throughout the year receive mentorship guidance, exchange ideas, collaborate, and jointly delve deeper into their practices. The 4 mentors, all experts on the intersection of arts and the environment, guide the participants throughout the programme. 

The programme consists of two Labs (week-long mentoring intensives, one in person and one online), bi-monthly online masterclass and peer-group sessions and an awards ceremony and visitors programme in Amsterdam and Berlin. Each participant receives an award of €6.000 to work on the concept for a body of work that they outlined in their application, with an additional €4.000 being available for either a collaboration with other participants, or if their concept solidifies in the process and needs extra budget to be realised. 

Through this mentorship programme we aim to:

  • support critical and unconventional work by emerging artists working on a range of issues related to environmentalism, the climate crisis and climate justice;
  • stimulate leadership of individuals whose artistic work fosters awareness and empathy;
  • accelerate the artistic practices of artists and cultural practitioners who show a commitment to creating lasting change through environmental activism;
  • facilitate exchanges, meaningful connections and learning between engaged practitioners;
  • strengthen and amplify new perspectives on environmentalism, the climate crisis and climate justice.

With this initiative we invite artists and cultural practitioners both from and based in our working countries to envision a better future for our planet through artistic practices. 

Further information on eligibility:

Support is only given to individual persons from, living, registered and working in our working countries.

This mentorship programme is specifically meant for individuals with ±8-15 years of relevant professional experience, individuals who do not have this level of experience are not eligible to participate in the programme. 

The Goethe-Institut and Prince Claus Fund hold a broad disciplinary understanding of arts and culture. With artists and cultural practitioners we mean people who have an individual artistic practice – be it as a visual artist, curator, writer, musician, performer, designer, architect, interdisciplinary artist, etc. Individuals who are arts managers, facilitators, academic researchers or other, without an individual artistic practice are not considered to fall under this category, and as such are not eligible to apply. 

Deadline for submission of project applications: 26 August 2021 23:00 CEST.