Artistic Co-Creation between Germany and African countries

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In 2012 the Federal Cultural Foundation launched the TURN Fund for Artistic Collaboration between Germany and African countries. Over the past eight years, the programme has awarded 12 million euros to fund 101 joint international artistic and interdisciplinary projects. These involved the participation of cultural producers and artists from over 30 partner countries on the African continent. After eight years, the demand for funding measures which promote artistic collaboration between African countries and Germany has not waned, but rather increased – especially among German cultural institutions. Past experience with TURN projects has vividly shown that debates, for example on addressing colonial rule with all its repercussion in the 21st century or topics like migration, climate just and global economic orders – cannot be adequately conducted without comprehensively including African positions.

Building on the experience of these past years and in consultation with international experts, the Federal Cultural Foundation has decided to launch the follow-up programme TURN2 – Artistic Co-Creation between Germany and African countries. In future, TURN2 will continue to promote projects which reflect on the financial and structural asymmetries between African and German partners, create a level playing field for mutual exchange, and share the resulting experiences in public discourse.
The TURN2 programme consists of three key instruments: a funding programme, a residency programme and transcontinental academies.

TURN2 Fund

The application-based funding programme supports artistic and cultural projects which are carried out as part of transnational collaborations with partners from African countries. The projects must have at least one African partner, but may include several other international partners. The projects should aim to stage events in the corresponding African partner countries. The TURN2 Fund is open to institutions based in Germany. Applicants must apply for at least 50,000 euros with at least 20 % of the total expenses secured with their own resources or third-party financing. The funding programme offers two application rounds, for which 1.5 million euros will be awarded per round.

The funding guidelines of the TURN2 Fund, the attachment with recommendations on promoting fair cooperation, the online application form and useful downloads can be found at the bottom of this page.

Jury TURN2 Fund

The jury includes the following members:

  • Alya Sebti has been directing the ifa Gallery Berlin (Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations) since 2016 where she has been developing a research and exhibition program investigating colonial structures in contemporary societies. She is part of Manifesta 13 artistic team, Marseille in 2020. In 2018 she was guest curator of the 13th Dak’Art, Biennial of Contemporary African Art and in 2014, she was the Artistic Director of the 5th Marrakech Biennial. She has curated several exhibitions including: invisible at Musée de l’IFAN in Dakar, Carrefour/Treffpunkt at the ifa Galleries, Casablanca, Energie Noire as part of Mons 2015 – European Capital of Culture, and Now Eat My Script at KW Institute for Contemporary Art Berlin (2014). She has written and lectured extensively on art and the public sphere, about biennials and transcultural art practices at venues including: Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Thessaloniki Biennale (GR); University of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; International Academy of Salzburg (Austria); New York University, Berlin; Le Cube Art Centre, Rabat.
  • Jay Pather is a choreographer, multi-media artist, curator and writer. He is a professor at the University of Cape Town where he directs the Institute for Creative Arts. He is the curator for the Infecting the City Festival; the ICA Live Art Festival in Cape Town, for the Afrovibes Festival in Amsterdam, co-curator for Body, Image Movement in Madrid and Spier Light Art in Cape Town, he is one of the performing arts experts working on the programming of the Africa 2020 Season in France. Publications include articles in Changing Metropolis ll; Rogue Urbanism; Performing Cities; Where Strangers Meet; Routledge Companion to Art in the Public Realm; New territories: theatre, drama, and performance in post-apartheid South Africa and Transgressions, Live Art in South Africa, a book that he edited with Catherine Boulle. A current publication is Restless Infections, Public Art in South Africa. Pather has initiated the Live Art Network Africa, served as juror for the International Award for Public Art, as Board Member of the National Arts Festival of South Africa, and was recently made Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government.
  • Elisa Liepsch is Head of Performing Arts at the Beursschouwburg in Brussels since 2019. From 2014 to 2019 she was dramaturg at Künstler*innenhaus Mousonturm in Frankfurt am Main, where her projects included Afropean Mimicry & Mockery in Theatre, Performance & Visual Arts (2014-2016), Projeto Brasil (2016), Displacements. Other Narratives of Flight, Migration and the City (2018), and im*possible bodies (2018-2019) (co-)curated. From 2010 to 2013 she was dramaturg and director of e-werk at the Deutsches Nationaltheater Weimar, and before that worked with Frie Leysen at Theater der Welt 2010 in the Ruhr region. Elisa Liepsch is co-editor of the publication "Alliances. Critical Practice at White Institutions" (transcript, 2018). Again and again she works in collaborative constellations with different partners, in which they jointly try to realize an art of the many.
  • Marcus Gora lives in Harare, Zimbabwe and is co-founder and director of the First Floor Gallery which has two galleries spaces, one in Harare and another in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. He is the band manager of the award-winning Zimbabwean music group Mokoomba. Marcus is a partner in Ngoma NeHosho, an innovative arts promotion company that directs the Jacaranda Music Festival in Harare. Additionally, he is part of the team at the Emerging African Galleries Association running the annual Emerging Painting Invitational Prize – EPI that supports young African painters and is one of the initiators of the Soulidarity Fund, a fund designed to support touring African bands affected by covid 19 disruptions. Lastly, Marcus is Vice Chairperson on the board of the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe whose mandate is to foster, develop and improve the knowledge, understanding and practice of the arts in Zimbabwe by encouraging the teaching and practice of the arts and their presentation, performance, execution and exhibition to the public.
  • Philippe Pirotte is Professor of Art History and Curatorial Studies at the Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main and Associate Curator of the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. From 2014 to March 2020, he was rector of the Städelschule and director of the Portikus exhibition hall. From 2005 to 2011, Pirotte was director of the Kunsthalle Bern and from 2003 to 2013 he was chief advisor of the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam. Recently, Philippe Pirotte curated the group exhibition Arus Balik for the Centre for Contemporary Art in Singapore (2019) and he was a member of the curatorial team of the Jakarta Biennale in 2017. Pirotte is currently a recipient of an Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts Fellowship, to explore cultural and artistic exchanges, originated after the 1955 Asia-Africa Conference in Bandung, Indonesia.

TURN2 Residencies

The residency programme will offer some thirty junior curators from Germany and African countries the opportunity to visit partner institutions in Germany (Berlin), Kenya (Nairobi), South Africa (Johannesburg) and Nigeria (Lagos). The TURN2 Residencies will finance research and work visits dedicated to cultivating the working relationships with established art and cultural institutions.

The Berlin-based ZK/U Center for Art and Urbanistics has been chosen to oversee the administration of the residency programme and manage the residencies in Germany. The ZK/U is responsible fostering contact between the African curators and established German art institutions and supervising the African residency scholarship holders. The African residency partners are the Bag Factory in Johannesburg, the Nairobi Contemporary Art Institute (NCAI) and the Guest Artists Space (G.A.S.) Foundation in Lagos. The residency programme is scheduled to begin in 2021. The scholarship candidates will be selected by a committee comprised of external experts and representatives from the partner organisations.
An important partner of the ZK/U – especially for organising the exchange with the African residency partners – is the Triangle Network in London. Founded in 1982, the Triangle Network supports the professional development and worldwide exchange between artists and organisations of the fine arts and maintains a longstanding network of members in various African countries. The collaboration with the Triangle Network aims to support interested German art and cultural organisations join established international networks even beyond the residency programme.

Residencies in Berlin

The programme plans to invite twelve young curators and cultural producers with curatorial experience from African countries to complete a three-month work and research visit at the ZK/U Center for Art and Urbanistics in Berlin. The programme will issue an international open call for applications in two rounds. The selected candidates will receive a monthly scholarship of 1,500 euros. Funding also covers travel and transportation costs, as well as accommodation and research expenses.

Residencies in Nairobi, Lagos and Johannesburg

The programme will invite up to 18 curators from Germany to complete a work and research visit at one of the three African member organisations of the Triangle Network (Bag Factory in Johannesburg, Nairobi Contemporary Art Institute (NCAI), G.A.S. Foundation in Lagos). The selected candidates will receive a monthly scholarship of 1,500 euros and additional funding for travel, transportation, accommodation and research expenses. Each of the three international residency locations will issue its own open call for applications. Six scholarship holders per partner organisation will be awarded residencies of up to three months in duration.

TURN2 Labs

Building on the TURN meetings of 2014 and 2016, as well as the growing interest of European cultural institution to engage in interdisciplinary exchange with the African continent, the programme will stage transcontinental academy events highlighting new forms of collaboration between Europe and Africa. Entitled TURN2 Labs, these events will be targeted at African and European representatives in the fields of art, culture, science, politics and economics. The events will address a wide variety of topics, for example, international cultural policy, environmental sustainability, cultural education, young talent promotion, mobility, contemporary art production and international funding programmes.

Information on the application

Amount of the fund

The Federal Cultural Foundation is continuing its support of the TURN Fund for Artistic Collaboration between Germany and African countries until 2024, allocating a total of 4 million euros to finance the follow-up programme TURN2 – Artistic Co-Creation between Germany and African countries.


Dr. Anne Fleckstein

TURN2 – Artistic Co-Creation between Germany and African countriesKulturstiftung des BundesFranckeplatz 206110 Halle (Saale)
Tel: 49 (0)345 2997 130Fax: 49 (0)345 2997 333E-Mail to Dr. Anne Fleckstein