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03 May 2010

HISK Open Studios & Call for applications

© Virginie Schreyen

HISK Open Studios & Call for applications
HISK / Higher Institute for Fine Arts / Advanced Studies & Practice-based Research in Visual Arts


Open Studios : Friday May 7, Saturday May 8, Sunday May 9, 2010 from 2 PM till 8 PM Deadline submission applications for work years 2011-2012 : June 15, 2010



HISK / Higher Institute for Fine Arts
Charles de Kerchovelaan 187a
B-9000 Gent

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HISK - Higher Institute for Fine Arts

Advanced Studies & Practice-based Research in Visual Arts

The Higher Institute for Fine Arts (HISK) organizes postgraduate education in Flanders in the field of the audiovisual and visual arts. It provides approximately twenty-five young artists from Belgium and abroad with a studio of their own for the duration of two years along with specific, tailor-made guidance.

At the HISK, emphasis lies mainly on individual practice with an international focus. The visiting lecturers are crucial. Artists, curators, critics and theoreticians pay individual studio visits at regular intervals. There are also frequent visits to significant art events and lectures, seminars and workshops are provided. The HISK also offers technical facilities and production opportunities.

Thanks to the unique HISK concept, the participants are given every opportunity to invest in critical research of their work in order to situate it within a broader artistic, cultural and societal context.

At the end of the two-year working period, the participant receives a certificate of 'Laureate of the HISK'. The HISK is officially recognized as Higher Institute and is financed by the Flemish Community - Ministry of Education and supported by the City of Ghent.

Since 1997, 159 laureates have graduated from the HISK. The largest part of them are currently building up a successful professional career in the Belgian and international art world.

In 2010, the candidate-laureates working at the HISK come from Japan, South Africa, Peru, India, Israel, Latvia, the Czech Republic, Portugal, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium. An international jury selected them from more than a hundred candidates.

The Open Studios give the candidate-laureates the opportunity to undergo a confrontation with the public and to generate a great deal of feedback from visual arts professionals. It also offers the audience access to and an insight into the artistic development of a young generation of artists who will play a part in shaping the future of the arts landscape.


Artists who have already obtained a Masters degree in Fine Art or an equivalent qualification are eligible to apply to the HISK. Exceptions can be made.

The admission committee is composed of international visiting lecturers from a variety of backgrounds. They make a pre-selection from the submitted portfolios and the candidates who make it through are invited for an interview regarding their motivations and expectations. After a period of evaluation and careful consideration, the committee then makes a decision as to whether the applicant is suitable.

The conceptual and visual qualities in the works submitted by applicants are considered to be more important than style, material or technique. Participants are expected to have a strong commitment to conducting critical research within their respective fields of interest. At the same time, they should aim towards locating their practice within a broader perspective of social and cultural environments. Candidates are also expected to make a contribution to the activities of the HISK as a whole. This interaction is seen to be an important forum of exchange and development.

Basic criteria for assessment are:

- The quality of the submitted work
- Evidence of a potential to explore various aesthetic possibilities
- The degree to which the work distinguishes itself from overt influences
- The coherence of the body of work
- The social/political relevance of the work
- The quality of presentation in the submitted portfolio (both text and images)
- Motivation for choosing the HISK
- Willingness to be involved in the HISK programme and ability to set aside time for this
- Ability to speak about your work and thinking around it
- The potential to grow within the HISK programme, both on an artistic and a personal level
- Evidence of sufficient maturity to be able to work independently

Each year between 12 and 14 candidate laureates are admitted.

Application candidatures 2010-2011

Please send the following

1. Information
• A completed application form (see
• Description of your work (in English)
• Your personal motivation for applying (in English)
• A detailed Curriculum Vitae including a list of exhibitions, grants, scholarships, awards, commissions, etc)
• Catalogues and texts describing your artistic work (optional)
• Maximum 3 letters of recommendation (optional)
• A copy of your ID card or passport
• A recent passport photograph (digital if available)

2. Presentation / portfolio
• Power Point or PDF presentation on CD (Mac compatible), along with clear labels stating title of work, medium, date and measurements (if necessary) + bound print out of the presentation (colour or black & white)
• Films and videos on DVD, if possible with menu

File to be sent to: HISK / Higher Institute for Fine Arts
Charles de Kerchovelaan 187a, B-9000 Gent, Belgium

Deadline submission: June 15, 2010

An international jury will make their selection in July 2010. The results of the selection will be known on July 20, 2010. Applicants who have not been selected can collect their documents at the HISK's administration office on conclusion of the admission procedure. Documentation of selected candidates will be archived in the HISK's records. As careful as the HISK may be in handling the documentation submitted, we cannot be held responsible for any loss or damage.

The first working year starts in January 2011 and ends in December 2011.

The registration fee for 2011 and 2012 amounts to 1000 euros per year (+ a single deposit of 300 euros). Health insurance is not included in the registration fee. The registration fee (and the deposit) must be paid before the start of the working year.
The Higher Institute of Fine Arts offers a studio, work places and pedagogical guidance. There are no scholarships or residencies available. Living costs are the participants' own responsibility.
Foreigner candidate-laureates have to arrange all necessary administration themselves in order to obtain a visa for study purposes and an official residence permit.