the moving gallery (MG)

Deadline: 16/10/2017  |  Published: 28/07/2017  |  Venue: Grey 530  |  City: READING  |  Country: United Kingdom  |  Anna De Amicis

Report this?
The deadline for this opportunity has passed, and no more submissions are being accepted. Click here to have a look at other opportunities listed on CuratorSpace.

The Moving Gallery (MG): transforming a double-decker bus into a temporary, travelling, and curated art space with the substantial support of Reading Buses.

1) The conceptual brief.
Background and Themes of MG.


The Moving Gallery (MG) is an art project that intends to investigate how public mobility may influence people’s sense of place and community in the town of Reading.

Reading with almost 240.000 inhabitants is one of the biggest towns surrounding London. Although it is a very old and has a rich history, its closeness to the City seems to have affected its efforts of creating a strong sense of place. Over time, the council has encouraged, through funding and initiatives, many projects with the scope of reinforcing the local cultural identity.

MG locates itself in line with this goal; it aims to explore the possibility of existence of the local in a globalised society and which part can be played by the public transport.

About that, using an urban bus as the privileged tool to deliver this project is not a casual pick, but it is pregnant with significance since it perfectly embodies the main core of the project.

The bus, by its nature, represents an inclusive community, which reactivates some processes that are getting obsolete.

In a society where people are encouraged to adopt an individualistic way of life, the bus implicitly asks people to share a very small place with others, to listen to their talking or to notice their moods.

Moreover, the bus is the symbol of mobility in a place; it is the most democratic and open of the means of transport; it is based on a sense of trust on the others: the trust on the fact that the bus is going to pick 'me' up, on the other people inside the bus who are not going to harm 'me', on the bus driver who has the responsibility of many lives while driving.


All that considered, MG asks the Artists to consider:

1.      How in the face of all the movement and intermixing that are happening, can we retain any sense of local place and its particularity?

2.     How mobility influences the sense that we have of space and place?

3.     What is the relationship between “place” and “community”?

4.     Is it obsolete to talk about “identity” and “security” in a globalised and much faster society?

A final note: Artists must consider the practical role and function of the bus in their interpretation. The bus is operational and their creative solutions must not pose a hazard on the road or to the public; this will influence the artist’s choice of visuals and graphics and forms part of the creative challenge. More details regarding this are in the section 'Artists, Artworks and Resources - Forms of Art exhibited at MG'.

2)  Artists, Artworks and Resources
Who may enter, Forms of Art exhibited at MG and What the project offers.

Artists who may enter

There are no specific restrictions in terms of artists to include in the Moving Gallery (MG) project. However, artists who live in Reading, work in Reading, or have any connection to Reading are particularly encouraged to participate.

About the number of artists involved, it can vary depending on the applications that MG receives. Ideally, the project goes for a collective project involving at least 5 artists.

Artworks exhibited at MG.

Artists are free to develop pieces using a wide range of media, such as:

·        Video art

·        Printings

·        Drawings

·        Small sculptures

·        Large pieces (i.e. mannequins accommodated on 1 or 2 seats)

·        Audio files

·        Short texts on screens

·        Performing pieces (i.e. an artist producing his/her piece on the bus).

Being exhibited on a bus, artworks need to be in compliance with the current Health and Safety requirements applied by Reading Buses as they:

a)     Must be safe for sharp edges, secure to the vehicle and consider impact in collision or slip/trip/fall;

b)     Must remain safe and legal and must not impede the use of the bus in public service;

c)  Must maintain transparency or translucency of windows;

d)Must avoid flashing lights.

About where to intervene on the bus, there are a series of privileged areas that can accommodate an artwork on the double-decker. For instance:

·    2D pieces can be located:

1) Internally, on:

- cove panels;

- ceiling panels;

- seat backs;

- pulpit panel;

- side walls;

- staircase walls;

- rear wall/window downstairs.

Standard size for a cove panel printing is 35cmx20cm; a larger size can be accommodated by arrangement.

2) Externally, on:

- body sides within the legal restriction of not covering the perimeter of the entire windows of the bus (around 30% of each window can be covered);

- advertisement panels having the following measures:

1) left side panel;

2) right side panel;

3) rear panel.

·    3D pieces can be allocated on:

- a plinth to be allocated downstairs, dimensions 30cmx28cmx10cm;

- a plinth to be allocated upstairs dimension 50cmx25cmx45cm;

- the rear shelve downstairs, dimensions 50 cmx90cmx70cm;

- the rear shelve upstairs, dimensions 25cmx180cmx10cm.

It could also be offered the space of one pair of seats on the upstairs decker, and could remove seats as required, dimension 110cmx88cmx40cm.

·    Video art can be run on:

 - a screen, dimensions 30cmx37cm;

- a screen, dimension 8cmx90 (only for text).

- Audio files can be run on speakers or downloaded on a smartphone via the WIFI storage of the bus;

- Performances may also take place on the bus.

All that said, artists are free to suggest a different space where to install/perform the piece/s they intend to propose and this will represent an element of the selection process.

In the case of 2D/3D pieces, Reading Buses advises using a resistant and durable material, like vinyl or plastic, as it needs to be appropriate to the peculiar space of a bus. At this regard, 2D/3D artworks can be produced inside Reading Buses' laboratory and artists are allowed to use printers (printer for vinyl and 3D printers) in collaboration with the company's technicians.

(N.B. All the measures presented are expressed in Height x Width x Depth.)

Resources offered by MG.

There is a budget of £300 to be split between artists if more than one is selected. Moreover, artists will have access to a set of 'non-monetary' benefits, such as:

- Having printed and distributed postcards and booklets showing their works;

- Producing the piece selected by the panel in the ReadingBuses laboratory

- Using tools unusual for studio artists, like a 3D printer;

- Being part of 1/2 workshop where to meet and discuss with the audience;

- Exhibiting their original artworks at Jelly, now located at the Broad Street Mall.

3) The audience
Visitors of MG and interactions with the artworks. 

Visitors of MG.

Visitors of the Moving Gallery (MG) will be the regular bus passengers of the town of Reading, as the bus will run on standard routes without requiring any additional fee. Moreover, Reading Buses offered to run MG as a “jolly” bus, that is to say, a bus that varies routes on a weekly or daily basis, to reach as many different places and people as possible.

Covering different routes at different times, MG will have on board, for instance, University students in the evening, pupils in the afternoon, elderly in the early mornings, professionals at the peak hours, etc. This makes the audience of MG extremely varied and also an “involuntary" one: people won't choose to see the exhibition but they will choose to take the bus to go back home, or to go to school, or to see a doctor, etc.

Being that the case, MG ask Artists to consider the way that the public would interpret their works and the diverse daily contexts in which these pieces would be seen.

Interactions with the artworks.

When MG was envisioned, it has been imagined as an art space that gives everybody the opportunity to experience art, starting from those who may not be gallery-goers.

The way MG is curated is exactly to enhance as much as possible the bus passengers' understanding of the exhibited Artists. In order to do so, MG plans to use QR codes and augmented reality to help those who want to know more about what they are seeing/experiencing; the specific content of this additional material will vary according to the interest/willingness of the single Artist involved. For instance, a QR code may open the artist's website or/and it may lead to an audio/video file showing the Artist working on that specific piece, etc.

In any case, the final aim would be creating a 'long-distant, virtual relationship' between the artists and this peculiar audience. MG also envisions that such a relationship can work both ways, as the MG visitors will be enabled to leave comments on the platform they are redirected to by QR codes.

4) The setting of MG.
A video to introduce the physical space of the double-decker bus.

MG wants to offer to the Artists the opportunity to preview the site where the artworks will be exhibited; the link below redirects to a video showing the bus's peculiarities and Artists are asked to consider how their own practice and content of work would respond to them. 

5) Submission & Selection.
What needs to be submitted and how the proposals will be selected.

DEADLINE: 16/10/2017 at noon.

Proposal/s to submit.

To take part to the Moving Gallery (MG) selection process, an Artist may only enter a maximum of two separate proposals. All proposals need to contain the following documentation:

· An application form (Appendix A)

·A biography not longer than 200 words;

·A conceptual statement/ artist’s statement/ synopsis of the artwork and design not longer than 400 words that outlines the central idea of the work.

·Between two and five high res (300dpi) images of the artwork – in case the artworks to submit has been already produced


·Between two and five high res (300dpi) images of the artworks' sketches.

·Model release forms (if applicable: for more details see section 'legal terms - model releases).

NB: individual files not larger than 1MB each.

How the proposal/s is selected.

The entire selection process is referred to a panel.

The first Selection will be done digitally and the result (successful or unsuccessful) communicated via email. At this stage, the panel will select Artists based on the successful interpretation of the concept of MG.

If an Artist is successful, he or she will be contacted and asked to present their works to the panel so as to discuss how to develop the proposal/s further. At this second stage, the panel will focus on the feasibility of the proposal.

If needed, successful Artists will proceed to realise their proposal/s with the support of Reading Buses technicians and facilities by using the 2D printer (on vinyl) and/or the 3D printer.

Panel's decisions are final and the selection panel and/or organisers reserve the right to refuse works that are difficult to hang, install or handle.

6) Legal terms.
Model releases, Copyrights and Risks.

Model releases. 

If images of a person/s under 18 are submitted the artist must obtain the written consent of that person’s parent or guardian. Written consent must also be obtained from any individual aged 18 or over who are identifiable in an image. It is the artist’s responsibility to ensure that the necessary consent has been obtained (Appendix B.1 and/or Appendix B.2). All model release forms must be submitted with your entry form.


The Artists warrant that they are:

(a)   the sole authors of the work, and

(b) the sole owners of all forms of intellectual property rights, registered and unregistered, in and to the work, the preliminary and/or final designs and any incidental works, including Copyright and Moral Rights as defined in the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 as updated by the Copyright and Related Right Regulations 2003.

By submitting a proposal, the selected Artists agree to let Reading Buses:

(a) reproduce the work in any medium, resolution, size or format and to make such reproductions available to the public through any means, including digital technologies;

(b) transmit, broadcast or otherwise make available (in any size or resolution or format) a display of the work to the public by means of any known (or hereafter known) device or process, including film, television and via the internet;

(c) make digitised reproductions of the work available to the public for display and viewing (in any size or resolution or format) on the website;

(d) authorise others to do any of the foregoing acts provided always that these acts are done in support of the cultural, educational, promotional, fundraising, charitable and all associated and non-commercial programmes of Reading Buses only.

(Please note that this is necessary to promote and market the exhibited artworks and artists,via traditional, social and online media. This kind of promotion is part of the 'non-monetary' benefits offered by the project.)


The Artists agree that they enter the competition voluntarily and at their own risk and Reading Buses  (and the panel) are not liable for any loss or damage that might arise, howsoever caused.

Although works will be handled with due professional care and usual and reasonable safety precautions will apply, the organisers take no responsibility for damage or loss of works.

It is the responsibility of the Artists to arrange for insurance of their works if they want to insure their piece.

It is at the sole and final discretion of the organisers/panel to cancel an entry on the grounds of illegality, infringement of any third party rights, or a transgression of the constitutional right of freedom of expression.

Final Notes.


MG exists thanks to Reading Buses and the openness of its employees towards innovative ideas as well as their willingness to embark on new, bold projects. Accepting to install an art space on one of its buses is an example of such an attitude.

The project has found support in other open-minded individuals and organisations in Reading. MG is grateful to:

- Sam Stead, who offered his precious assistance and suggestions during the several stages of this venture,

- Reading UK CIC, which is financially contributing to pay artists' material and promoting the initiative, 

- Jelly, which will participate in the selection process, organise MG workshops and exhibit MG original pieces,

- Sarah Hacker, who was intrigued by the MG's idea and themes and offered valuable advice to make the project matters,

- Azzurra Petruzzella, an independent curator whose substantial contribution to the conceptual brief of the open call was much appreciated,

- all the artists in Reading, who have shown interest towards this project over time and implicitly helped MG to move forward.

More information:


Contact the curator

You must have an account to send a message to the curator of this opportunity. Registering only takes a few moments. Once registered you'll be able to keep track of all of your submissions and get updates on upcoming opportunities.


Already have an account? You must log in to send this curator a message.