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Calling all 2020 North West UK graduates



Calling all 2020 North West Graduates!

Best of 2020

This year has been a pretty bad year and we want to launch 2021 off with a better start and a brand new show featuring 20 wonderful and talented graduates from across the North West.

We know many of you have not been able to have a physical degree show this year, or even have the chance to complete your final degree pieces due to the lack of access to facilities and support. We want to provide you the chance to get your work seen in a group show at AIR Gallery in March-April 2021 as a way of celebrating of the graduating class of 2020.

It is free to submit your work to this opportunity and you can submit up to 3 works for consideration. Ideally we would like to either be: your degree work, a response to this year or something you've made this year that hasn't been seen physically.

Each selected artist will recieve £100 towards transportation/preparation of their work. Prizes available to be won, sponsors to be annouced shortly. 

A selection of those unselected for the physical show will be showcased in a virtual exhibition runing alongside the main show.

What we are looking for:

The best of the best! It could be something new and exciting or a new take on a classic style. Don't hold back on us, submit your best stuff.

Any works that fall into the remit of contemporary art; this can but is not limited to painting, sculpture, mixed media, installation, collage, animation, photography, film, textile and printmaking.


You have to have studied at a university/educational institution in the North West. Please see our pack for full list of eligible institutions. 

You must have been in your final year of study at the start of 2020 and finished your course of study before Oct 2020.

BA & MA courses are eligible. 

The work must be complete and available for Mid-February 2021 ready to be delivered and installed March 2021. Dates may be subject to change due to local lockdowns.

Due to space limitations, we are asking all works to be under 1.5m max length on any one side.

Due to space limitations we can only take 20 applicants overall so please do not be disheartened if you do not get selected at this time. 

Please do not enter works that are homophobic, racist, toxic, pornographic or pedophillic.

Prize summary: 
Up to £1000 in prizes available
Prizes Details: 

£500 AIR Award

£300 Short Supply Award

£100 Visitors Choice

£160 Sponsorship prize


Entry Fee:

Contact & Links: 

Call for artists: Expanded Drawing



The Concept

AIR Gallery, Altrincham, invites establishing and emerging artists of all disciplines to consider and submit artworks centered around what drawing is today. 

Drawing has always been used as a tool to slow down and observe. Challenging the pre-conceptions of a drawing in contemporary art. Everything has to begin somewhere and even with a mark, can drawing expand out both physically between and across mediums? Is drawing more than just marks on a page? Is the act/action of drawing just as important? How can we expand the notions of drawing through painting, sculpture, performance and social contexts? 


We are looking for drawing based practices or works that center around these questions. Considering the ideas of Expanding drawing, what can and cannot be a drawing today in both 2D and 3D contexts. The show aims to entice conversation and narrative of drawing on and off the page in creative and imaginative ideas into the gallery space where the space between thoughts and the physical gesture question drawings role today. 


Artists can enter any medium for this open call; however please read the following:

  • This open call is only open to UK Artists
  • Any works entered must have been made in the last three years
  • We will accept proposals for work but you must show us examples of previous work so we can assess the feasibility and your ability to deliver
  • All works must relate to drawing in some way. You will be required to explain this during your entry form.
  • All works must be an expansion of drawing in some way; whether a cross-over with another medium (sculpture, performance, narratives around drawing etc.) or be an expansion on drawing in it’s own right. 
  • Any work entered must be available for the exhibition. We will not accept replacements if works have sold before selection.
  • Any images entered of work must be clear and high quality.
  • We want works with a clear concept behind them.
  • Up to 5 works per artist can be entered
Prizes Details: 

No prizes available but we will be seeking funding for artists


Entry Fee:

Contact & Links: 

Lucky Dip




The Concept

To host an exhibition based purely on the theme of chance! Artists will be selected at random for a unique group show in March 2020.

By removing the control attached to Open Call selection, artists will be purely chosen by chance. This gives every artist equal opportunity to have their works elected for the show regardless of background, education, status or connections. It also removes part of the curatorial control, making for a more challenging and interesting resulting show.


How does it work?

Every artist who completes an entry form will have their name entered into a ‘Lucky Dip’ draw. Once the deadline has passed, 20 names will be drawn at random by an unbiased panel of judges. The process will be filmed to show fair selection.

Each artist can enter up to five works for consideration. Upon successful selection, we will review the artists chosen and artworks will be selected by our in-house curators based on their suitability with the other artists in the show. It is likely that most successful artists will have between one-three works selected for exhibition.


What does it cost?

It cost £5 per artist to be entered for the lucky dip. This money will be used towards covering the promotional cost of the show, install equipment and cash prizes for up to two artists awarded at the end of the show.



What can I enter?

Any artwork, any medium and any theme. However there are some restrictions:

Please ensure all work entered fits under the umbrella of contemporary art. Please see examples of our previous exhibitions for visual inspiration.

Please ensure all work entered is under 1mx1mx1m.

Please ensure all work is complete and fully dry before delivery

If entering a concept piece at application stage, please ensure the work is completed and ready to display by the deadline for delivery.

Please only enter work that will be available during the dates of the exhibition.

2D Work

Any wall based work is acceptable if it is within the size restrictions.

3D Work

Any 3D based work can be entered if it is within the size restrictions. We do have plinths available at the gallery but would prefer artist to supply their own where possible.


Film, video and animation based work will need to provide their own display equipment. Please ensure you are able to provide this before submitting an application for this open call.


Performance art can be entered, however any cost associated with the performance must be covered by the artist (travel cost, hotel cost, performance fee, materials etc) and you must be available for the opening night.


We do not accept work that is:

Racially offensive.

Homophobic, Transphobic or derogatory to the LGBT community.

Pornographic or depict explicit sexual acts.

Harmful to the public or contain noxious or toxic substances

Copies of works by other artists or works that are in breach of copyright

Prizes Details: 


There will be two prizes available for artists: The AIR award and visitor’s choice with a minimum of £500 of cash prizes to be won. (Prize amount may increase depending on the Number of Entries)


Entry Fee:

Fee Detail: 
Contact & Links: 

AIR Open 2019



​We are seeking entries for our annual summer exhibition the AIR Open 2019. Featuring artists from around the globe, this exhibition is open to any artist working in any theme.

​The cost is £5 per work. Artists can enter a maximum of 3 works for consideration. Entry fees are non-refundable and does not guarantee selection for the final show.

​Up to four cash prizes will be awarded. Max Value £1000

​Please read our Terms and Conditions before entering.


​All applicants will receive a special 20% discount on their next online or in-store order with CASSART, plus free standard delivery. This voucher will be sent along with confirmation of your application. Many thanks to Cass Arts for sponsoring the AIR Open 2019.


Entry Fee:

Fee Detail: 
£5 per piece
Contact & Links: 
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