Breathing Space: Grants for Arts Practitioners 2020

Deadline: 31 August 2020
Open to: artists, collectives and organisations from across the African continent
Benefits: grants for the proposals


The last six months has seen many of our assumptions about society, culture and economy upturned or broken. We see in equal measure both the emergence of possibilities for rapid and transformative change, and the deepening of existing fractures and injusticesIt is clear that we are inside a period of disruption that neither began nor will end with the COVID-19 pandemic, and in which the larger social-economic-ecological crises of our time become vivid and present. 

The present call both supports entirely new ideas and initiatives, as well as the amplification or extension of what arts practitioners are already doing in response to these changing circumstances. The call is also open to proposals that involve the exploration of new formats and approaches as well as projects that use this moment of global rupture to engage more deeply with or interrogate older methods and practices and archives – or indeed to do both. Analogue and digital approaches are equally welcome. It is not expected that proposals should address COVID–19 at the level of theme or content.


  • Open to artists, collectives and organisations from across the African continent, excluding North Africa (which is covered by a parallel call from Cairo office). Applicants should be actively involved in the professional arts field on the subcontinent.  
  • Open to all disciplines that Pro Helvetia is active in – music, performing arts, visual arts, literature, design and interactive media, and inter-disciplinary work. Note that cinematographic film (long form, short form and documentary content for cinematic screening or televisual broadcastis excluded from Pro Helvetia’s mandate. 
  • Activities covered by the grant should be completed and reported on by the end of April 2021. 
  • Only one application per individual/organisation.


Grants are available. Requests should be between CHF 2 000 and CHF 10 000 in value (around USD 2100 – USD10 500). The more precise, specific and clear the budget is in relation to what you are trying to achieve, the better. 

How to apply?

For more information please visit the official website.