Despina Residency Programme is designed for artists and curators wishing to immerse themselves in their work and/or research. They provide the space to explore practices, concepts, new ideas and materials, and to develop a project while receiving feedback and support. The selected artists/curators have the chance to live and work in Rio de Janeiro and to participate in a range of activities such as talks, meetings, studio visits and exhibition tours. Participants are also encouraged to propose talks and workshops, and to learn about the socio-cultural and political scenario in Brazil. The support, network and creative environment offered by Despina Residency Programme encourages professional/ artistic development and international contacts.
Despina is an independent space committed to develop platforms for research, production and exchange in the fields of art and cultural activism. Active since January 2013, it has been established as a non-profit association in 2015. The space – a 400 m² historical building located in the city centre of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – comprises several art studios. Despina runs an international art residency programme alongside a dynamic agenda of exhibitions, workshops, courses, performances, talks, film screenings, among other activities. The projects developed by Despina are based around the following proposals:
- create a lively and supportive environment for the development and exhibition of contemporary art, instigating critical thinking
- facilitate experimentation and innovation in contemporary art practices by stimulating dialogue between artists and across cultures
- support and strengthen connections between art and activism
- widen access to contemporary art, fostering the participation and visibility of historically marginalized agents
- contribute to the urban and cultural revitalization of the area where the space is located
Despina has developed collaborations with several organizations and institutions across the globe, such as Central Saint Martins – University of the Arts London, Diagonale Arts and the Arts Council of Montreal, Fruitmarket Gallery and the British Council. Despina is also a member of the Network Partnership of the Prince Claus Fund.
The selected artists/curators have the chance to live and work in Rio de Janeiro and to participate in a range of activities such as talks, meetings, studio visits and exhibition tours. Participants are also encouraged to propose talks and workshops, and to learn about the socio-cultural and political scenario in Brazil. Further: Exhibitions and open studio event, talks, workshops.
Seven studios are permanently occupied by artists who live and work in Rio de Janeiro. In the same building, four studios are reserved for artists participating in Despina Residency Programme.
This arrangement meets the organizers' goal to create a workspace that encourages the exchange and dialogue, not only between artists but also with other agents. The studios are open to the public during exhibition openings and events, and artists have plenty of autonomy to organize their spaces individually, propose workshops and exhibition projects.
Library, printers, projectors, basic tools, leftovers (wood, paints, mixed materials, etc).