Spring 2016 Call for Artists

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Embark Gallery seeks work by local MFA and MA students for 2 juried exhibitions and 1 curatorial proposal!

Any students currently enrolled in graduate programs related to the arts at the following institutions are eligible to apply for one or all calls: California College of the Arts, Mills College, San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco State University, San Jose University, Stanford University, UC Berkeley and UC Davis.

Entry Requirements


Selected artists will be notified by February 3, 2016.

Applicants will apply for each exhibition via the related SlideRoom link or visit our application portal HERE to apply to multiple shows.

 1. Encounters: Portraits and Identity

A response to the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery’s 2016 Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition juried by Associate Curator of Painting and Sculpture, Dorothy Moss and Director of the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, Kim Sajet.

Call for artworks that capture an aspect of identity-- whether personal, familial, cultural, political or otherwise. Like the guidelines for the Competition, the subject of the artwork may be anyone: a friend, stranger, relative, yourself- but must be the result of the artist’s direct encounter with that person. Artists are invited to interpret the concept of portraiture broadly, and artworks of any medium will be considered, including performance.

This exhibition will run from March 18-April 30, 2016.


 2. CAMPUS: Interventions to Public Space

Embark Gallery partners with Fort Mason Center for Arts and Culture to present "CAMPUS: Interventions to Public Space." 

This exhibit takes Embark’s contemporary and cutting-edge programming outside of the gallery, and onto the Fort Mason campus. This call is for site-specific installations and/or performances that engage the public space of Fort Mason Center. Existing work and detailed project proposals will be accepted. Project proposals should include a detailed description with installation plan and a drawing and/or reference images of proposed or similar past artwork.

Priority will be given to artists who respond specifically to their location, and to work that encourages audience action and participation. Artwork may address the history, architecture or location of Fort Mason Center, a formal military port, as well as questions over public and private space, federal and civic entities (FMC is owned by the National Park Service), sociopolitical and cultural changes in San Francisco, the Bay, Pacific Ocean, or environmental issues-- as long as the installation and/or performance responds specifically to the site, all interpretations on the theme will be considered.

There are 3 available spaces and you may apply to 1 or more in the following sections.

The show will run from May 12, 2016-June 4, 2016, and coincides with the San Francisco International Arts Festival. 


3. Call for Curatorial Proposals

Embark is excited to announce our first call for curatorial proposals! Open to both MFA and MA students with a focus on art history, curatorial or museum studies, or other similar programs.

Please submit a 250-500 word proposal for an exhibition to take place at Embark Gallery. Proposals should take into account past programming at Embark, and propose a novel exhibition. The call for artists may not exclude any individual on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, age or ability. The proposal must be broad enough that it is feasible for anyone to apply. Curators should plan to exhibit 4-10 artists from at least 3 different schools. Proposals broad enough to diversify the applicant pool will be given priority. Proposals already focused on specific artists cannot be considered.

We encourage proposals that consider current discourse surrounding contemporary art practices, theory or history, but take on a new perspective. As part of Embark’s mission to expand the audience for up and coming contemporary art, we advise against proposals that are so academic as to be inaccessible to the public.

Aside from these guidelines, proposals for a show of any medium, theme or subject matter will be considered. The winning proposal will be included in Embark’s mid-year call for artists and the show will be presented in the fall. The author of the winning proposal will join the Executive and Curatorial Directors of Embark in selecting artists after submissions for our next call are received, in July 2016. This meeting can be held both virtually or in person.


Please contact us at info@embarkgallery.com with any questions or concerns

As always, we look forward to your submissions!