CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: The Bureau of Writing

Posted on 12 August 2015 in News

The Biennale of Sydney and Artspace announce The Bureau of Writing: a collaborative writing program designed for artists and presented alongside the 20th Biennale of Sydney.

Increasingly, visual arts practitioners are working collaboratively and on the fringes of other disciplines; equally, contemporary writing practices merge genres, and engage with virtual and physical spaces. Early career Australian-based artists working with text are encouraged to apply to participate in a program designed to highlight emerging practices that occupy these in-between spaces of writing.

Australian and international artists, curators, writers, academics and participants in the 20th Biennale of Sydney will come to Sydney for a series of talks, public programs and workshops that will explore such questions as: How might writing constitute performance? How is meaning produced through language? How has our understanding of text been changed through experimental, performative, feminist, queer and ficto-critical writing practices? What online spaces and methods are being used for writing today?

Five selected participants will take part in a focused series of workshops scheduled to take place between September 2015 and March 2016 in Sydney, Australia. Over this period, new work is to be developed in sprints and over longer durations, in a mix of collaborative and individual processes, and in dialogue with the workshop facilitators. The project aims to provide support of new work and a range of presentation platforms. The outcomes are not prescribed yet there will be opportunity for the presentation and publication of new work in May and June 2016, as part of the official program of the 20th Biennale of Sydney.

Participants must be in Sydney or available to travel to Sydney several times over the project’s duration, for 2-4 days at a time. Interstate travel and allowances are provided as part of the project. A stipend of AU$1,000 is provided to each of the five participants.

Applications close at 5pm on Thursday, 20 August 2015.

Your application must include:

  • A cover letter expressing your interest in taking part
  • A statement of your availability to be in Sydney in the following periods:
    11–12 September 2015
    22–23 February 2016
    19–22 March 2016
  • Possible date(s) in May/June 2016 to be defined
  • Two samples of writing, no longer than two pages (this does not need to be published work)
  • CV
  • Images if desired and relevant, up to a maximum of five
  • Links, as many as desired and relevant


Melissa Ratliff, Curator and Manager of Public Programs and Education:
02 8484 8709

Forward applications to:

Melissa Ratliff, Curator and Manager of Public Programs and Education, by email (preferred):
or post, marked ‘Confidential’ to (submissions to arrive by Thursday, 20 August 2015):

Melissa Ratliff

Curator and Manager of Public Programs and Education
Biennale of Sydney
Level 4, The Arts Exchange, 10 Hickson Road
The Rocks NSW 2000

Download the PDF call for applications 

Image: Heman Chong, Black Holes and Time Warps, The Possibility of an Island, The Practice of Everyday Life, Voyage to the End of the Room, 2006. Installation view, Deckard & Pei, Singapore.


Australia Council for the Arts      The Keir Foundation

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body. It has been made possible through the generous support of the Keir Foundation.