Artist Residency: Radical imagination for lively villages

Socially engaged artists are invited to join an 1-month artist residency in the vilages Deleyna and Sinagovtsi (Vidin, Bulgaria)

Ideas Factory is heading to the North-West once again (Baba Residence 2019 was in 3 villages in the Vidin region) with its third international art residency. This is the first time it will be held in villages! Below you can find detailed information about the stages and the deep meaning of this intergenerational and intercultural meeting, but if you feel ready to jump right into the application process, click HERE.

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<Radical imagination for lively villages>

Ideas Factory Association is pleased to announce an invitation for artists to participate in a 1-month artistic residency, which will be held in the villages of Deleina and Sinagovtsi (Vidin district) in Northwestern Bulgaria. The residency is part of the European Cultural Foundation’s endorsed cultural and social-entrepreneurial initiatives across Europe in the Democracy Needs Imagination program.

The problems that the residency will look for a solution to

The two villages are located in an area of ​​social, cultural and geographical periphery affected by contemporary political and economic processes. Poverty, depopulation, lack of quality access to culture and a broken link between generations are all part of the consequences of these processes. Therefore, the villages in the area need new approaches that incorporate creative imagination and the means of art as drivers for a beneficial change.

European democracy suffers from a syndrome of radicalized discontent resulting from the breakdown of healthy community ties and trust. We can respond to this by creating an occasion for a meeting between cities and villages, across generations, cultures and life experiences, which will spread messages across Europe of solidarity, empathy and understanding beyond the black and white perspective.

Residencies will provoke and create occasion for a new type of connection – to people and the place itself, but also vice versa – to the broader perspectives and networks that residents bring to these places. The topics and questions that guest artists will work on are: what can be radical artistic actions to defend a position, what can the art of overcoming the inequalities and injustices we see in contemporary society have to offer.


The residency will last for 1 month and will take place from 1 -30 June 2020. It will seek creative answers to the aforementioned problems of our time, paving the way from the periphery to the center and back.

10 artists, visionaries and activists from Bulgaria and other European countries will be accommodated in the homes of local people in the villages of Sinagovtsi and Deleyna. They will communicate with the local people, listen to their needs and stories and use the local community centers for their creative activities. At the end of the residency, during a community event, they will present their artistic projects that in participatory way response to the problems. The final exhibition presenting the artistic responses will be shown first in the villages, then in the regional town of Vidin and finally in Sofia.

Participants will be selected by an open call and interview. Their projects will be implemented, presented, published, exhibited and commented on in the next five months after the end of the residence.

Application and selection

This call is addressed to artists  from Europe (including non-EU countries), from any age and discipline (visual and digital arts, performing arts, music, literature, cinema, etc.) who focus their artistic research and production on socially engaged topics and practices.

The central point of this residency program is to provide a meeting space for different people and create a space for sharing and empathy. Therefore, any type of community-based, participatory and interactive artistic practices are welcome. Artists collaboration is strongly encouraged as well as local people engagement in any stage of the project research and production.

In order to apply, fill the application form HERE.

Application deadline: April 15, 2020.

The selection will be made by the Idea Factory team, program curator and external expert until 25 April 2020.

Half of the selected residents will be from EU Member States and those from outside the EU, and the other half will be Bulgarian and Balkan artists.

Residents will be provided free of charge:

– accommodation and food during their stay at the home of local people; – travel costs (up to 150 euro for EU countries and up to 55 euro for Bulgaria and Balkan countries)

– work space at local community centers.

They will have a small production budget for materials (up to 150 BGN) as use of local resources is strongly encouraged. Any kind of assistance from the curator and project team will be provided to the artists during the residency period.

The selected residents shall pay a participation fee of 100 euro for the whole period of the residency. Ideas Factory can offer two scholarships covering the participation fee for Balkan artists, who have strong will to participate but limited resources to do that. They will be selected based on their motivation to take part in the residency programme.

For more information and inquires: