MGLC Švicarija: Open Call for Critic-in-Residence Programme 2022

Photo: Jaka Babnik, MGLC archive.
Photo: Jaka Babnik, MGLC archive.

Update: Results of the open call

The jury has selected Maximilian Lehner, a curator, author, and researcher from Austria. He cofounded The Real Office (RO) in Stuttgart, an agency for concepts, funding, and project management in the independent art scene. Lehner has served as a research and teaching assistant at the Institute of Contemporary Arts and Media at KU Linz from 2016 to 2022. His writing has been published in art magazines including BLOK, Kajet, Revista Arta, ETC. magazine, and Artforum. He is part of the Funduk artist collective and the curatorial conversation platform bad curating inc. Lehner studied art theory and philosophy in Paris, Stuttgart, and Linz where he is pursuing his doctoral studies. He is currently attending CuratorLab, a one-year international curatorial course at the Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts and Design in Stockholm.

About the open call

MGLC Švicarija, a creative and residential centre, in collaboration with the Igor Zabel Association for Culture and Theory, both based in Ljubljana, Slovenia, invites art critics and cultural journalists to apply for a fully funded, one-month residency in Ljubljana during October 2022. Deadline for applications: 10 January 2022.

Who we are

Located in Ljubljana’s central Tivoli Park, MGLC Švicarija is a cultural, educational and social hub that offers programmes to the public, studio facilities for local artists and residencies for international artists and art professionals. Home to a public programme following the concept of “community, art, and nature”, Švicarija is part of MGLC – International Centre of Graphic Arts, a specialised museum, producer of printed and contemporary art, and provider of artist residencies. MGLC emerged from the legacy of 20th-century printmaking and the Ljubljana Biennale of Graphic Arts, the world’s oldest printmaking biennale that has been held continuously since 1955.

The Igor Zabel Association for Culture and Theory works with and promotes the legacy of Igor Zabel, an influential Slovenian curator, art writer and art historian (1958–2005), by bringing his work into dialogue with current questions and phenomena in the field of contemporary art, art writing and curatorial practices in Central, Eastern and South-eastern Europe, and beyond.

What we aim to do

The overall aim of the international residency programme is to support the exploration and reflection on contemporary visual art. We welcome art writers who wish to engage with and reflect on the local art scene. 

Our aim is to host an art critic or cultural journalist active in writing and publishing reviews and/or other forms of art writing in the international context, and who is interested in Ljubljana’s vibrant art scene and will produce at least 1 piece of writing (review, interview, column or essay) on selected artist(s), art exhibition(s) or art event(s) in Ljubljana over the course of the residency. The text should be published in the English language in a relevant periodical (printed or online), radio, television or personal blog. 

The selection will also take into account whether the applicant already has an agreement or confirmation for the publication in relevant media of the text to be produced during the one-month residency.

The period of the residency is 1–31 October 2022.
The 2022 critic-in-residence programme will take place in October 2022. The duration of the residency is fixed and is not subject to change. If applicants are unable to commit to the defined term or residency, the organisers cannot guarantee that the residency will take place in another time period.

We are looking for an emerging or established art critic or cultural journalist:

  • who is a skilled writer with proven experience in writing and publishing articles on contemporary art;
  • who has an excellent command of English (but need not be a native speaker);
  • who has the desire to explore new art scenes; 
  • who is able to produce at least one piece of writing over the one-month period about selected artist(s), art exhibition(s) or art event(s) in Ljubljana;
  • the text should be published in a magazine or journal, newspaper, online portal, radio, television or personal blog (however, publication can also take place after the term of the residency).

In addition:

  • priority will be given to critics/journalists with already arranged confirmation for publishing the text in relevant media;
  • prospective candidates should have a genuine interest in discovering the local art scene, meeting artists and attending exhibitions and other cultural events that take place during the residency;
  • we are open to exploring different approaches to writing about art. 

What we offer:

  • free accommodation in a fully equipped studio apartment at the MGLC Švicarija creative and residential centre;
  • reimbursement of travel expenses to and from Ljubljana (up to €500 from European countries, up to €900 from non-European countries);
  • stipend for living expenses (approx. €1085 per month gross / €35 gross per day);
  • support in getting to know the local art scene.

How to apply

We accept applications at the email address: [subject line: “open call – art critic 2022”] or by post to MGLC, Pod turnom 3, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia [labelled: “open call – art critic 2022”] until 10 January 2022 (midnight CET). 

There is no fixed application form. Applications should feature a work plan for the “critic-in-residency”, including the following:

  • a description of the applicants’ particular interests in visual art and the planned focus during the Ljubljana residency [maximum 500 words];
  • where the article will be published; 
  • biography [maximum 500 words];
  • contact details [full name, address, email & telephone number, date of birth];
  • two examples of previously published pieces of writing (in English).

Applications will be evaluated by a jury composed of professionals representing MGLC – International Centre of Graphic Arts and the Igor Zabel Association for Culture and Theory. The selected applicant will be notified by the end of February 2022. If applicants do not hear anything by that time, this indicates that their application was unsuccessful on this occasion.

*If you have any questions regarding the open call, please contact Dušan Dovč: or +386 1 241 38 17.