Open Call “Politics of Heritage” Nomadic Mediterranean Residency Program For Sound & Urban Heritage

Onassis Stegi (Greece)


The school will develop a shared conversation over the course of the residencies – learning from local urbanists, activists and cultural producers as well as one another – leading to a collection of new, interrelated works in the form of texts, sound and/or film. The residencies will value the perspective of the visitor – rather than aiming for a historical account of each city, we are interested in the particular shared space that is created through exchange between three cities across the mediterranean, the ways sonic memories are carried between, and resonate within them. Heritage, of course, can be a shared resource for remembering and an infrastructure for belonging, but it can also be misappropriated, distorting urban development for exclusion and private profit. By developing new ideas and artefacts through sonic methods, we are proposing to think of heritage as something made through active processes of creative remembering, as we move between places that echo within us.

As part of the ALEX Creative Europe project coordinated by MUCEM, Theatrum Mundi and Onassis Stegi are producing a pluri-disciplinary nomadic residency program exploring sound, memory and trans-Mediterranean resonances. The curatorial lead for this program will be Theatrum Mundi.

The call is aimed at anyone engaged in the study, protection or production of collective urban memory – in the form of built heritage, soundscape, music, stories, social and political practice, with sound as a primary medium of research. Together, and in collaboration with local artists, urbanists and researchers, the participants will form a ‘school’ for sonic memory, investigating the ways that three cities across the mediterranean resonate with one another, how elements of a connected and conflictual past are made audible within them.


  • How are the rhythms of one city transposed to another? Are they in sync, counter-rhythm, or poly-rhythm?
  • How have the acoustics of public spaces shaped or been shaped by public gathering? How are these resonances appropriated now?
  • Can we identify trans-mediterranean sonic practices?
  • Can the past of one city be heard in another’s sonic culture?
  • Is it possible to find sonic traces of what has marked the city, or become absent?
  • What role does each city’s sounds play in the dreams, nostalgias, or hopes of another?
  • How do cities speak to one another about their experiences?
  • How does classification as a heritage site affect the overall dynamics of the surrounding urban environment and what are the politics of preservation?


  • One completely new text, score, or recorded audio-visual work produced individually or in collaboration with a contributor from one of the cities visited (i.e. guest writer, performer, editor contributing partially to the work – €500 fee)
  • Live presentation of this work in at least one public event (i.e. as a talk, solo performance, or screening)
  • Recorded / exhibited presentation of the work in two other public events. Works produced must be easily transportable from one exhibition location to another and should not take the form of voluminous / heavy constructions or depend on sophisticated technology for their installation.


We are calling for expressions of interest to join a 6-month production process, based around 3 one-week creative research residencies:

  • Athens, November 2021
  • Alexandria, January 2022
  • Marseille, March 2022

The selected artists will have to travel to all 3 cities and collaborate with a group of local artists. A final week-long event will be organised in Biella, Italy in July 2022 to share insights and the results of the residency.

This schedule is provisional and contingent on the Covid-19 developments globally. Travel and activities are subject to being postponed between January and July 2022.



  • Applicants must be fluent in English.
  • Applicants should be engaged in the study, protection or production of collective urban memory – in the form of built heritage, soundscape, music, stories, social and political practice, with sound as a primary medium of research.
  • Applicants must currently reside within:
    • an EU member state, or, the United Kingdom,
    • an EU pre-accession country: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, and Turkey,
    • an EFTA member state: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland,
    • one of the following countries of the EU Southern Neighborhood: Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco and Tunisia.

*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244(1999) and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.

Please note that gender and geographical balance will be taken into account as selection criteria.


  • Application deadline 30th May, 2021
  • Selected participants will be informed by end of June
  • The final list of residents will be announced on the organizers’ and project partners’ websites and social media platforms.

Please note only accepted applicants will be contacted directly.


The program covers travel, accommodation and meals. Participants will receive €3,000 fee, payable in accordance to international and local laws. Additionally, each artist will have a budget of up to € 500 to cover the production costs.


The submissions will be reviewed and evaluated by a jury consisting of representatives of the participating partner organizations in collaboration with the curator of the Politics of Heritage residency program Theatrum Mundi.


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