Call For Artists - Look Up, Portsmouth 2017

April 18, 2017

Look Up is a high impact, outdoor gallery, produced by ArtReach as part of Journeys Festival International.


Artworks are scaled up to large format and exhibited high up on the exteriors of buildings across the city.

Journeys Festival International aims to celebrate and highlight the extraordinary and powerful artwork, music, creativity, culture and experiences that refugee artists bring to the UK. It works across a wide range of creative media and disciplines and aims to bring the exceptional talent of local, national and international refugee artists into the public eye. 




Look Up was first delivered as part of Journeys Festival International 2015 in Leicester. The exhibition showcased the exceptional work of Kurdish artist Behjat Omer Abdulla, pasted onto 5 iconic buildings across the city. Following the success of this ‘pilot’ exhibition, Look Up was delivered again in Leicester in 2016, this time in 10 locations, showcasing the work of Syrian artist Mohamad Khayata, and was also taken to the new cities of Manchester (artist: Jamal Jameel) and Portsmouth (artist: Nikos Papadopoulos) as part of our developing Festival work in those locations. In Portsmouth we exhibited images from Nikos’ ‘Plasticobilism’ series across five locations including Wight Link Ferry, The Astoria and the Guildhall Hall Big Screen.


An international port city, Portsmouth defines and celebrates itself through the journeys people to take through it and to it. In 2017 we would like to commission an artist/artists to capture sensitive portraits of people who now call Portsmouth home. Inspired by our partners in Rome who are working with artist Sibomana, we are interested in commissioning a series of colourful, creatively manipulated or illustrated photographs. Please see examples below;


We are now seeking applications from an artist/artists to create 6-8 artworks for the 2017 Look Up exhibition in Portsmouth. This is a paid commission with an inclusive fee of £1,500 offered.


*Exciting Addition* The chosen artist will recieve a 6 week residency at the leading contemporary gallery Aspex, Portsmouth AND a 6 week exhibition as part of Journeys Festival International Portsmouth. #JFIPorts




In order to apply you must fit the following criteria:

  • You are a practising artist/artists from the refugee or asylum seeker community

  • If you are not a refugee or asylum seeker yourself, your work and/or proposal must be significantly linked to the refugee experience and/or you have experience of working with new and diverse communities

  • We particularly welcome applications from Portsmouth and Hampshire based artists. We are happy to receive applications from collectives or artist duos

  • Your work can be successfully translated to large scale format and retain quality, clarity and visual impact

In order to apply please submit the following:

  • A short covering letter (1 side of A4 maximum) detailing your interest in the project

  • Your artist’s CV (if available)

  • A minimum of 6 high quality images of your artwork

If you would like support to complete your application, would like information or to submit your application in another format or language, or if you have any questions, please contact Producer Charlotte Mountford on or call 0116 261 6882.


Extended deadline:  Wednesday 24th May, 5pm


Please email your application (or request information) to: 

Charlotte Mountford - Producer, ArtReach: or call 0116 2616882





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