Art & Design Residency ‘Radical Waters – Concrete Matters’

Fully funded three-month international residency for collaborative projects aimed at exploring research-based water material applications in coastal urban environments, aiming to inspire regenerative change within the local mindset ecosystem


For artists, designers, architects and collectives who are interested in sustainable design practices. Applications will only be accepted in English.


The ‘Radical Waters – Concrete Matters’ residency programme grants support for collaborative art and science projects.

We are looking for prototype research projects spanning disciplines such as design, textile, architecture, aquaculture, and more. These projects should foster innovative approaches that blur the lines between marine resources and urban design while promoting ecological awareness and locally grounded creative solutions, focusing on the bioregion Mar da Palha (Tagus River).

This initiative, promoted by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and the Lisbon Municipality, is part of the “Bauhaus of the Seas Sails” pilot project, funded by the Horizon Europe Programme.

Eligibility requirements 

  • This open call is for artists, designers, architects and collectives who are interested in sustainable design practices;
  • We seek Art & Design led projects only, that create works in visual arts, architecture, design, and cross-disciplinary practices. These projects should delve into material applications, production possibilities, and scenarios for the sustainable integration of water-based resources and materials from Mar da Palha (Tejo Estuary) into urban environments. The aim is to contribute to fostering a “new conscious model critical thinking” within a blue economy framework;
  • Residency projects and public presentations must be executed until 14 December 2024; 
  • Candidates must be over 18 years old;
  • Fluency in English, and preferably also in Portuguese;
  • National and international artist-authors can apply, in their individual or collective capacity.

The submitted project should span three months and be carried out between July 1st and December 1st, 2024. While the exact starting date will be determined upon successful acceptance into the program, applicants must specify their preferred work schedule and approach in the application form. 

Expected outcomes 

During the residency period in 2024 the selected project is expected to:  

  • Develop a prototype for the public space with materials from Tagus River/Mar da Palha. The project can potentially collaborate with the residency “Eating between Tides” (e.g. incorporating the leftovers into some kind of useful materials);
  • Participate in: at least one educational or collaborative activity for the local community; public talks to introduce the project and a public presentation at the end of residency;
  • Submit online a final report of the research;
  • Provide the process documentation.

Grant Conditions 

  • Financial support of 10.000€ that should cover fees, expenses and production.
  • Access to dedicated workspaces with tools and materials for your project development, which include: studio space at Marvila Library; Workspace and public programme space; Bio, Materials and Technology Research Laboratories; Specialized Libraries and Local Community Archives;
  • Benefit from guidance and support provided by experienced mentors and professionals in relevant fields for your project, namely support from the teams at Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary-TBA21, and professionals specializing in sea-based materials at municipal laboratories and ITI/IST, including architects, engineers, and scientists.
  • Access to natural sites throughout the Tagus River and nearby coastal areas;
  • Access to local resources and institutions.
  • Networking opportunities;
  • Accommodation is not included, but exceptions may apply. 

How to apply? 

  • Register to apply;  
  • Before submitting the application form, check all the eligibility criteria. We advise you to read the Call Conditions and the Frequently Asked Questions; 
  • Applications can only be submitted once all the mandatory fields of the form have been completed and uploaded the required documentation in English as PDF files according to the Call Condition:
    – CV (max. 2-pages A4)
    – Cover letter (max. 500 words);
    – Project proposal (max. 4 pages A4)
    – Portfolio (max. 10-pages in A4)
  • At the end, click on the “apply” button. To prevent difficulties in submitting applications, avoid submitting your application in the last few days before the deadline.  

Please note that not all residency and research locations are accessible to reduced mobility. For inquiries about accessibility or other topics, please contact us through this form.

Updated on 13 may 2024

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