Deadline: Passed

September 27, 2018: ONCA calls for POC artists working in any medium for project about biodiversity, racial justice and environmental justice.

ONCA is pleased to announce a residency opportunity on the ONCA Barge in November 2018 for three POC artists (any artform) to create new works responding to the theme of biodiversity, racial justice and environmental justice, to be shared at ONCA Gallery in central Brighton November 28 – December 16. The exhibition of residency outcomes will be curated by Imani Robinson, artist and member of SYFU (sorryyoufeeluncomfortable) Collective.

**We are holding an open evening on Tuesday 9 October, 6 – 8pm at Phoenix for anyone interested in finding out more, sign up here**

Remembrance Day for Lost Species (or Lost Species Day, or RDLS), 30 November, established in 2011, is a chance each year to explore the stories of extinct and critically endangered species, cultures, lifeways, and ecological communities. ONCA has been one of the lead organisations supporting RDLS from the outset. Whilst emphasising that these losses are rooted in violent and discriminatory governing practices, the day provides an opportunity for participants to make or renew commitments to all who remain, and to develop creative and practical solutions.

However, the ways in which biodiversity loss is presented in mainstream discussions are often dominated by white-western narratives and exclusionary of people of colour. This is why we’re seeking new ways to improve Lost Species Day’s articulation of the links between biodiversity loss, environmental injustice and racism.

We invite up to three POC artists to work on the ONCA Barge, with mentoring and a series of learning opportunities, with outcomes to be shared in the ONCA Gallery. **No prior knowledge or experience of working with these themes is required.** This is an opportunity to make links between Lost Species and the artists’ lives and work. We aim to offer space for artists to rearticulate biodiversity protection discourse in support of social justice, using artistic and narrative-based approaches to articulating and highlighting struggles.

Accessibility: The Barge is a unique space at Brighton Marina. It’s accessible via a ramp which at low tide is rather steep. We have hearing assistive tech and can access BSL interpreters. We will do our best to ensure that the Barge residency meets any access needs, and that you have the support and materials you need. The exhibition will be on the ground floor of ONCA Gallery, which is wheelchair accessible. Please get in touch to discuss any questions.

Expectations: We expect you to spend at least 2 days per week on the Barge between 1 and 26 November, and to participate in 3 events/learning sessions before the exhibition and a public conversation with curator Imani Robinson in the gallery on 28 November. Throughout November and December there will be a series of activities to support artists and audiences in learning about and articulating what environmental justice is.


  • October 9, 6 – 8pm: Open evening for any POC interested, explaining what Lost Species Day is, exploring the intersections of racial and environmental justice and inviting participants to share their own narratives.
  • October 14, Midnight: Deadline for applications
  • October 19: Applicants notified of outcome
  • November 1 – 25: Residency on the Barge including meetings with curator and other artists/activists
  • November 26 & 27: Install exhibition
  • November 28: exhibition launch event with curator Imani Robinson
  • November 29 – December 16: Public events programme TBC
  • December 16 – 17: De-install and post-show reflections

Fee: Each artist will receive a fee of £500. There is an additional budget for materials. ONCA can make a limited contribution to travel costs.

Eligibility: Applications for this residency is open to all people of colour based within and outside Brighton & Hove. ‘Person of Colour’ or POC is a term used to a describe a person who is not white or of European heritage.

How to apply: Please email the following to by midnight, Sunday 14 October, with ‘RDLS Artist Call’ in the subject line:

  • CV & Artist Statement
  • 3 examples of previous artworks (images/videos/sound clips etc)
  • Letter of motivation

We recognise that providing the above information in written format will be prohibitive for some applicants, and are happy to receive it in other formats such as video or audio files.

This project is supported by funding from Arts Council England, and is part of the nationwide Season for Change – ‘celebrating the environment through culture and inspiring urgent action on climate change‘.

Image credits: Laurie Griffiths & Jonty Tacon (MAP6), Faunagraphic


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