Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs regarding submission to the New Contemporaries Open Call

Why have New Contemporaries opened up the call to non-affiliated courses?

New Contemporaries recognises that tuition fees, student loans and the cost of living make it a challenging environment for artists from a broad range of backgrounds to enter Higher Education.

We also recognise the merit and value of alternative programmes of study as a means for artists to develop their practice within different pedagogical structures.

In response, from this year’s open call we will accept submissions from a number of non-degree awarding programmes. The decision to open up access to our opportunities to those developing practice outside of formal education has been taken into careful consideration and discussion with our Board. As an organisation, we understand that artists enter alternative models of education often through necessity due to financial and personal commitments, as well as through an increasing interest in the specific offer that these programmes offer.

Who are the selectors for BNC?

The selectors for Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2019 are Rana Begum, Sonia Boyce and Ben Rivers.

There is no pre-selection, everything that has been submitted will be reviewed by the selection panel.

What works should I apply with?

New Contemporaries cannot enter into any discussion regarding advice about particularities of artwork. We would advise that you discuss this with your peers and tutors, about making the strongest and most impactful application possible.

Should I add my name and title to my work?

The process is to remain anonymous. Please do not include any biographical details, including your name, on any media you upload. This is especially important for video works, where you should not include your name on any title pages or credits that may reveal your identity.

How do I submit my video work?

Please see here for instructions.

Uploading works is taking too long

The submissions site is likely to become very busy towards the deadline, so we recommend that you begin your application as early as possible. Please also check through the Submissions Guidelines document for more information about file sizes and formats.

Can I submit a proposal?

While New Contemporaries accepts proposals for works that haven't yet been made, we would advise artists to submit already existing works rather than proposals for new works.

Selectors look at a lot of applications and have limited time to read proposals, to try and understand the new work being proposed. A clearer application would include existing works.

Proposals for potential workshops, performances, participatory, time based or ephemeral works are still eligible. Proposals or statements for existing works (other than performance) are not required.


New Contemporaries can assist artists with the application process who may identify as having a disability. Please contact us at or telephone: +44 (0) 20 7033 1990 to make arrangements.

When will I hear back about being selected and what is the process?

Applications are checked and the selection panel meet to consider the work in two rounds. Once submissions are closed, all digital documentation will be reviewed for errors and applicants will be contacted with any queries. A list will be made up and applicants will be notified about whether or not the panel wish to see more of their work in person. Works requested for viewing will be collected for a second round of selection. Applicants will be notified of the panel’s final decision shortly afterwards.

Why was my application not successful?

New Contemporaries receives an incredibly large number of applications and therefore the selection is very rigorous. With a very high standard of work submitted and limited space in the galleries it is simply not possible to accommodate the work of as many artists as the panel would like, so please do not be disheartened if you were not selected this time.

New Contemporaries would love to be able to provide feedback to individual artists but, because of the volume of submissions, unfortunately this will not be possible.