Call For Visual Art – Hidden Door 2022

Update – this call for submissions is now closed.

Hidden Door Festival 2022 will take place from 9 – 18 June at a secret location in Edinburgh. We are now inviting visual artists to get involved. Apply by Monday 24 January 2022.

Hidden Door is staging a 10-day multi-arts festival in 2022 at a new location – a secret, abandoned building complex in the city centre. The disused spaces of the site will be transformed into live music venues and performance spaces for theatre, dance and spoken word performances, alongside pop-up bars and a multitude of art exhibition and installation spaces.

We are looking for submissions to our visual art programme; innovative and striking projects across a variety of artistic disciplines including everything from painting to performance. Hidden Door’s main aim is to support and create opportunities for emerging artists based in Scotland and so we are particularly looking for projects which allow artists to develop their art practice and encourage new graduates and those who consider themselves emerging artists to apply. We do however welcome applications from UK artists at any stage in their career.

Through bringing a range of art forms together, Hidden Door aims to generate a wide audience for the arts and create high-impact events, providing the opportunity for contributors to reach new audiences and meet and work alongside a diverse range of practitioners. By using buildings and sites that are lying unused, we aim to open up new space in the city for new things to happen and provide an exciting way for audiences to access the new, incredible creative talent coming through in Scotland.

Each project selected will receive a fee of £500 towards the artist’s time plus project expenses, as well as free access to the festival.

How to apply

Please apply by midnight on Monday 24 January 2022.

Full details

Download this guidance as a PDF document: 2022 Call For Submissions Guidelines for Visual Artists

Guidelines for submitting a proposal

Hidden Door is looking for visual art projects or bodies of work to show at the next Hidden Door Festival, dates 9th – 18th June 2022.

We are looking for projects which will create an impact and engage audiences, while allowing artists to push the boundaries within their work and show a development of their artistic practice in some way. 

We will consider proposals for new work as well as proposals to re-develop a previous project, or adapt a previous project to a new space. 


Open to visual artists at any stage of their career working in any media, including but not limited to painting, printmaking, sculpture, photography, drawing-based practice, video, installation, performance, sound art, collaborative projects.

We welcome applications from new graduates and those who consider themselves emerging artists

Hidden Door’s emphasis is on art based in, or connected to, Scotland, but not to the exclusion of anything else. We are interested in making connections with artists living anywhere in the UK.


As part of the application you will be asked to upload:

Please note that a crucial part of the selection process is based on the review of applicants’ visual material and as such we strongly encourage applicants to submit good quality visual material where possible.  We recommend jpg images of 1MB or more. Please ensure all attached file names contain your name. 

Selection Process

Artists’ submissions will be reviewed on the following criteria:

The proposals will all be looked at by a panel put together by Hidden Door’s Creative Director, featuring experienced visual artists and experts in the field of visual art.

Successful applicants will be notified by email by 7th February 2022

Due to high levels of submissions we receive, we will unfortunately not be able to give feedback on individual proposals.

Fees & Materials

Hidden Door will pay participating artists a fee of £500 per project towards their time.

Hidden Door will also pay a contribution towards expenses. This amount will be agreed with each artist once selection has been made.

We ask each applicant to indicate what they expect the project costs to be at point of application. This is not binding and we would discuss indicated expenses on a case by case basis with each selected artist. We expect that this amount would change to an extent once the project has begun to be developed.

Expenses may include transport costs, materials costs, specialist equipment or workshop hire, outsourcing to third parties, printing costs, and many other project costs.

Please note Hidden Door will provide some equipment for artists’ projects. This includes lighting, AV equipment and basic construction materials for installing the works such as timber, paint and fittings. These requirements will be discussed with the artist once selection has been made. 

If the artist includes these costs in their indication of project expenses, these will be discounted when considering the application

We would expect to pay a basic maximum of £300 expenses per project on top of the fee, although higher expenses costs will be considered

Installing Work and Take Down 

Each selected artist is responsible for delivering their project, and ensuring it is finished and ready for the opening of the Festival. 

Participating artists should be available for a sufficient number of days between 25th May – 9th June to carry out the install, and between 19 – 23 June to de-install their work. During these dates the site will be accessible from 10am – 10pm. (These exact dates/times may be subject to alteration, but as much notice as possible will be given).

If you need practical help for the install, our team of volunteers will be available to help with build and space preparation where needed.

The Hidden Door team will discuss with each artist the best way to look after each project and ensure it is kept safe and shown to its best advantage throughout the festival.

Additional Information

We have not yet announced which site we will use for our 2022 festival, however we do intend to announce the venue and release details about the different spaces and areas the venue comprises before the deadline for the Visual Art Call For Submissions. 

Applicants are welcome to wait until an announcement is made, however we also encourage applicants to submit proposals that are not space-dependent or site-specific and are flexible to be applied to different kinds of  spaces, as these are often easier to curate alongside all the other elements that make up a Hidden Door Festival and therefore can be more likely to be selected. 

If you do wish to wait, we recommend you check our website and social media regularly for updates. 

If you have already submitted a proposal and more information is released that means that you would like to resubmit your proposal, you are able to submit a second, amended, or different proposal. 

If you have further questions please email 

Being part of Hidden Door

If you are selected to be part of Hidden Door, you will receive a fee of £500 and full access to all of the festival, including the VIP opening event. (Our artists are our most important VIPs!)

Please be aware that Hidden Door is a charity and is run and organised by a large team that is mainly made up of volunteers who commit to making it happen in their spare time.  We therefore ask that artists get involved in the spirit of a DIY event – we will do our best to support each and every artist that is participating, but it makes a huge difference to the success of the event if each artist helps to support Hidden Door too. This means we ask our contributors to help market the event, share and get involved with our social media campaigns  and play their part in generating interest in the festival.

Artists can also join in helping set up the site, as well as taking responsibility for setting up their own installations and productions. We like our artists to enjoy working alongside one another, to get to know other practitioners and to hang out at the festival. Hidden Door is just as much for the artists as it is for the audience. 

If this sounds okay to you, then Hidden Door is for you!