News & Blogs

The Place is 50 - Visual arts commission call out

4 Nov 2019

The Place is London’s creative powerhouse for dance development. Our mission is to power imagination through dance by championing new ideas, embracing risks and creating a dance ecosystem unlike any other in the world where artists and dance enthusiasts can realise their full potential. The Place is home to London Contemporary Dance School, Richard Alston Dance Company, an extensive theatre and artist development programme, education projects, a range of classes and courses and a nationwide touring model.

2019-2020 marks our 50th anniversary. This milestone is an opportunity to celebrate our rich history of innovation in dance whilst looking to the future and re-affirming our vision of a world with more dance with more creative ambition than ever to secure The Place for the next 50 years.

October Gallery Education

October Gallery Education is supporting The Place. October Gallery Education aims to communicate some of the rich stylistic diversity of contemporary art from around the world with schools, families, the local community and our OG Youth Collective. We engage with these groups through workshops, events, exhibitions and long-term projects, and aim to provide an inclusive programme which is accessible to all.

The opportunity

As part of The Place’s 50th anniversary year, we would like an artist to create a site-specific piece that celebrates our participants; this could reflect their experiences and memories of The Place or their hopes for the future of dance or of the organisation. The piece will be on display for a minimum duration of 3 months (and up to a year).


We are looking for artists who have experience of working with communities in a participatory approach.  The chosen artist will either draw inspiration from or make the piece with a group of volunteers from The Place’s large cohort of audiences and participants.

Research and resources

The chosen artist will have access to staff, participants and audiences through up to 3 workshops (space and participants provided) or 1: 1 interaction. A further workshop will be expected to be delivered by the artist for the OG Youth Collective (the October Gallery young people’s programme) responding and sharing the final outcome and commission. (Format, date and timings to be confirmed later) The artist will also be given the entries to our 50th social media campaign ‘Best Place Moments’ (people’s short memories of The Place) if that is of use.


The piece(s) will be displayed in one of The Place’s public areas to be seen by the general public, audiences and participants using the building.

Spaces available for the final artwork:

  • Theatre Bar:
    • Limited floor space
    • 2 screens
    • wall space available 
  • Box office/Foyer (Dukes Road entrance):
    • Limited floor space
    • Wallpaper space
    • Archway wall space
  • Reception/studio foyer (Flaxman Terrace entrance):
    • Hanging space

The Place is seeking proposals from artists working in all types of contemporary visual art practice, including photography, new media, fine art, artists’ moving image, live art, crafts, design, architecture, site-specific, socially engaged and interdisciplinary practices.

Download and fill in the application form and submit via email to

Closing date for submissions 9am Monday 2 December 2019

Feel free to email for any questions or clarifications.

Selection criteria

Proposals will be considered against the following criteria:

  • Quality of proposed approach & engagement, and awareness of project context
  • Artistic quality, realistic ambition of previous work
  • Quality of ideas and inventiveness
  • Clear evidence demonstrating the ability to deliver to brief, time and budget

The proposals will be reviewed by a selection panel consisting of: Helen Keall (Director of Operations), Caroline Schreiber (Director of Communications), Maria Ryan (Senior Producer, Creative Learning), a member of the Artist Development team and Georgie Fay (Head of Education – October Gallery).

Practical details

Fee: £2,000 (including research & development time, materials, fabrication/production, shipping to and from The Place)

PR: The artwork will be labelled including brief details of the artist for the duration of the exhibition; the work will be publicized to The Place’s mailing list (circa 30,000 people); an opening event may be arranged if appropriate and by mutual agreement


December 2019       artist selected (informal interviews with shortlisted artists will take place ideally on 11 December or on 18 December if the 11 isn’t suitable)

Jan– March 2020     research, development and creation (including up to four workshops as detailed under ‘Research & resources’ section above).  We expect an ongoing dialogue as the work develops including regular progress updates (via email or phonecall).

April 2020                  installation

August 2020             earliest deinstallation: the exhibition period may be extended up to a year by mutual agreement

The Place will insure the artwork for the duration of the exhibition.  The artist must have Public Liability Insurance for the creation and installation/deinstallation of the work.  The artwork including copyright remains the property of the artist. 

The work will be on display in a public building and as such must conform to health and safety standards, and be of robust enough construction to remain in situ for a minimum of three months.

Thank you to the OCtober Gallery for supporting this project 

In this section: