We are delighted to launch the open call for New Art West Midlands 2019 in partnership with Coventry Biennial of Contemporary Art, Herbert Art Gallery and International Curators Forum (ICF).

New Art West Midlands 2019 is a new model curated exhibition that takes place at Coventry Biennial of Contemporary Art, 4 October – 24 November, across a variety of sites in the city. Applications will be considered in relation to the unique context of the city and to the Biennial.

Coventry Biennial takes ‘The Twin’ as its theme this year. 2019 marks the 75th anniversary of Coventry’s twinning with Volgograd (formerly Stalingrad), Russia. As the world’s first formal international twinning, this is a significant moment which locates Coventry as an international, collaborative city. The Biennial will consider what twinning might mean within the context of contemporary artistic practice, explore the urgency of collaborative and participatory projects, and look at what happens when artists and others come together to make. The Biennial opens dialogues between artworks and place, presenting exhibitions in galleries, historical sites and the public realm in Coventry and its surrounding areas.

Following the enormous success of their Diaspora Pavilion during the 57th Venice Biennale in 2017, we are very pleased to announce that International Curators Forum will select a cohort of 20 emerging artists from diverse backgrounds to exhibit existing work at New Art West Midlands 2019 x Coventry Biennial.

Professional Development
In addition to participation in Coventry Biennial, a smaller cohort of diverse exhibiting artists will be selected to work in partnership with ICF and an appointed curator on a year-long professional development programme. This intensive period will support practice-based skills toward the development of new work for a further curated exhibition at the Herbert Art Gallery (Culture Coventry), in autumn 2020.

Applications are welcomed from visual arts graduates from Birmingham City University, Coventry University, Hereford College of Arts, Staffordshire University, University of Wolverhampton and University of Worcester graduating at BA, MA or PhD level in 2017, 2018 or 2019.

Diversity and diversification are key priorities for New Art West Midlands and our partners. We particularly welcome applications from artists with culturally diverse heritage or who explore diversity in their practice, as well as artists who identify as disabled and/or LGBTQI. Previously unsuccessful applicants are encouraged to reapply.

Applications should be submitted via our online application portal.

Deadline: 5pm, Monday 17 June 2019.





About New Art West Midlands

New Art West Midlands is the Contemporary Visual Arts Network for the region. Our purpose is to strengthen and develop the contemporary visual arts sector in the West Midlands, creating defining opportunities for West Midlands’ artists and curators, and working collectively to safeguard the future of artists and our sector.


About Coventry Biennial of Contemporary Art
Coventry Biennial of Contemporary Art brings critically engaged, high quality contemporary visual art to the city and surrounding area. Celebrating and promoting contemporary art and artists, the festival is equally rooted in the city of Coventry, its history and its future. The first Biennial took place 6 – 22 October 2017 in venues across the city, the centre-piece being the sprawling CET Building, now under redevelopment. 2019 is the Biennial’s second iteration, with the third taking place in 2021 as part of Coventry’s UK City of Culture year.


About International Curators Forum (ICF)
ICF develops and offers professional development opportunities for artists and curators, which include curating exhibitions and events that address diasporic culture in a global context; connecting professionals around the world through organised international networking trips and residencies. Past projects include the 2016-2017 international knowledge-sharing platform ‘Curating the International Diaspora,’ and the 2016-2018 professional development programmes ‘Diaspora Pavilion’ and ‘Beyond the Frame.’


About Culture Coventry
Culture Coventry is the trust that manages three of Coventry’s finest visitor attractions: Coventry Transport Museum, home to the world’s largest collection of British road transport, including the two fastest cars in the world; the award-winning Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, which celebrates the city’s culture, history and arts; and the Lunt Roman Fort, a fully excavated and partially reconstructed turf and timber fort, including the only gyrus in the Roman Empire. Between them, the attractions proudly tell stories of Coventry’s unique history to over 800,000 visitors per year from around the world.

We are delighted to launch the open call for New Art West Midlands 2019 in partnership with Coventry Biennial of Contemporary Art, Herbert Art Gallery and International Curators Forum (ICF).