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Our projects

Open calls

Photo of installation Approximate by David Hunter

We share opportunities for artists, makers, designers, technologists and beyond to become part of our programme through a range of creative briefs for our public spaces and further afield.

All current open calls will be detailed on these pages. You can also browse through our archive of projects.

Previous projects

Real Quick

Real Quick is the Barbican’s new platform for rapid responses to the state of the world. A series of talks, performance, and creative experiments tackling current affairs and recent happenings. 

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The Barbican and The Trampery selected five innovative artists working at the intersection of art, technology and entrepreneurship to take part in a major new project.

Taking inspiration from start-up accelerator models, alt.barbican is a response to the blurring of boundaries between individual art forms and a generation of emergent artists drawing upon multiple disciplines and new technologies to create projects with new expressive possibilities.

The six-month programme will provide a range of showcase, mentoring, training within an environment in which research and discussion about this emergent field can take place and be shared.

Meet the participants

Concert Hall Wall

As part of our foyer installation series, we invited artists, collectives and designers across all disciplines, including those working with digital technology and new media, to respond to the phrase: What’s going on here, then?

The artwork would be projected onto the concert hall wall, visible to visitors throughout the Barbican's public spaces. Our inaugural winner was Find Yourself by Alex Mead and Jack Wates. By installing cameras around the foyers, they captured the buzz of movement throughout the centre in a series of surprising angles and reflections from above.

About the commission

Hack the Barbican

In association with The Trampery

Throughout August 2013, the Barbian foyers became home to 100 discipline-bending installations, performances, workshops and discussions for Hack the Barbican, a new collaboration between artists, technologists and entrepreneurs. The programme featured coding, soldering, painting and fabrication in specially created hack-spaces in the foyers - and even our publicity screens and audio announcement system was prone to unusual behaviour...

About the project

Fish Island Labs

In association with The Trampery

Fish Island Labs was created as a unique new centre in East London to kickstart the careers of a new generation of emerging talent whose work spans technology and the art. Populated by a diverse community of 50 emerging practitioners, all pushing creative boundaries and exploring new technology, for 12 months, our residents have been developing new work, covering everything from sculpture, installations and physical performance to coding, film editing and digital art. The programme culminated in an exhibition, Interfaces, at the Barbican. 

About the exhibition
Photo of woman sitting on stairs listening to headphones

Watch: Edgelands - An Audio Journey

Roam the Barbican foyers using headphones to experience this audio journey, reframing the sounds and sights of the iconic arts centre as you discover an architecture of other spaces, resounding with the echoes of its Utopian foundations.

Photo of Bocci installation in the foyers

Watch: Bocci and Omer Arbel's 44

How do you build a light sculpture? Watch the making of our bespoke light installation, designed by Omer Arbel and produced by Bocci in this stunning timelapse.

Photo of Feld installation at Possibly Colliding

Watch: Possibly Colliding by FELD

From Berlin to the Barbican, digital craft studio FELD designed a spatial installation in the foyer, exploring the theme of collision as two revolving arms narrowly evade each other in a huge mobile of light and sound in constant motion.