Arts by the Sea Festival, Open Call for Artists



Call for Artists 

The festival is inviting artists to apply to create a commission for the festival. Successful artist applicants will receive funding, publicity around their commission and support from the festival's production team and Creative Producer to realise their idea. This opportunity may be more suited to early career artists, though anybody residing in the UK is eligible to apply. We welcome proposals from artists who wish to develop an existing work.

Arts by the Sea festival is committed to promoting equality and diversity across our programme and we actively encourage applications from artists of any ethnicity, gender and irrespective of any disability. 

We are particularly interested in outdoor light art, sculpture and installation work that:

  1. Has sufficient scale and impact in the setting of Bournemouth Gardens or Bournemouth Beach
  2. Is visible at night, as well as during the day (it gets dark around 18:50).
  3. Encourages interaction and exploration of the work.

We are also interested in artwork that references or explores the 2019 artistic concept (though this can be subtle and is not essential).

Please note: applicants are required to show their work for the full 3-day duration of the festival.

About the Festival 

The 2019 Arts by the Sea festival core programme will take place on 27th - 29th September with Fringe events taking place in the preceding week from 23rd - 29th September. The core programme is a 3-day celebratory explosion of art with many fantastic events taking place throughout the town. The festival is focused on programming inclusive and accessible events across a range of disciplines, most of which will be free and unrestricted to attend. The festival is delivered by Bournemouth Borough Council with the support of Arts Council England.

Venues for the 2019 festival encompass Bournemouth's Central and Lower Gardens, Beachfront and Pier Approach as well as including dozens of small gig spaces, theatres, libraries and cafes which participate in the Fringe festival. The artistic concept for this year is 'Mind Matter' (details available on the Opportunitues Page on the festiva's website) which invites artists, Fringe event organisers and creative partners to open and explore discussions around mental health.

Application and Commissioning Process.

Artists are required to complete an online application form, accessible via the festival's website.

Commission Levels

Arts by the Sea festival will be awarding one artwork commission in 2019 with a value of £6000.

Artists are invited to submit proposals until 5pm on 1st April 2019.

The successful applicant will be notified no later than 15th April 2019. 


  • The commission is open to all, provided the lead contact is a resident in the UK. This includes early career artists and any form of creative organisations.
  • Applicants with additional funding (who are applying for a portion of the cost of a co-commissioned work) are eligible.  
  • Proposals for developments of existing work are eligible. Applicants should explain this development in the Project Outline.
  • The project must be presented in Bournemouth at Arts by the Sea 2019.
  • All project expenditure must take place after the panel decision has been formally announced to the successful applicant.


Deadline for submissions: 17:00 1st April 2019                   

Selection of artists to feature in project: 15th April 2019

Site visit for artists to assess requirements (where relevant): 1st - 31st May 2019

Live Event: 27th - 29th September 2019     

Evaluation period: October 2019

For further information and to access the application form please visit the Arts by the Sea website via the link below. 

Contact & Links: