Open Call Details


Under Review
Open from 
4th April 2020, 11:00am IST to 10th June 2020, 11:00pm IST
Results by 
10th September
Ripple Effect
Social Contagion
Group Behaviors

Science Gallery Bengaluru seeks interactive, participatory works for CONTAGION, an exhibition that explores the phenomenon of the transmission of emotions, behaviours, and diseases. 

The domino effect, the ripple effect, or the ability of one event to set off a chain of others has been known and described in various ways. From a yawn in a classroom setting off a wave of them to a chain reaction within a nuclear reactor leading to the creation of energy, this effect can be seen everywhere. 

Human social interactions are among the most studied examples of this. We have observed historically that our ability to travel, combined with our need to communicate and connect, has led to some of the worst epidemics. Within the human body, the spread of infection from cell to cell requires communication and strategy, which is well exhibited by microorganisms, viruses, and parasites.

Emotions are contagious too! Our everyday lives are filled with examples of how we “catch” subtle or complex emotions, such as happiness, anger, panic, or depression, from other people. We see this contagion manifested in social phenomena like the mass protests, violent riots, or the selling panics and buying frenzies of the stock market. Research has shown that moving against the crowd provokes the alarm circuits in our brain, while conformity keeps us calm. This has formed the basis for much of the advertising, propaganda and social media.

Psychologists, anthropologists, virologists, historians, designers, health workers, artists, and neuroscientists have studied how and why human minds and bodies are captured and cultivated by viruses, visionaries, and vogue. 

We at Science Gallery Bengaluru are looking to work with such individuals or groups – preferably from across career and disciplinary backgrounds - who are critically exploring diverse contagions in the contemporary context and those engaged with emerging research. Your application can be an artistic or a scientific inquiry, or both. 

Keeping in mind the unique global context we find ourselves in we are especially looking for work that utilises digital platforms for engagement. We also encourage proposals for public art projects in Bengaluru that are aimed at, as Maria Balshaw, Director of the Tate art museums and galleries, has recently said, “amplifying our human capacity to respond to adversity creatively”.


First and foremost, we prioritise works that help our audiences critically explore the processes of producing knowledge relevant to the topic of the current Open Call. We are looking for both existing and new projects that match Science Gallery’s core aim: to Connect, Participate, and Surprise. Relevance to our core audience of 15-25-year-olds is important. We strongly encourage you to take a moment to explore our website for exhibitions held at our sister galleries to consider the Science Gallery ethos and the fit to our current open call before committing your valuable time and energy to the application.


We invite proposals for exhibits as well as ideas for public programmes. A clear rationale related to Science Galley’s aims and those of the CONTAGION Season would be expected in the response to the Open Call.

  • Science Gallery’s approach is transdisciplinary so we accept projects from highly diverse disciplines that could include art-works, video, performance, poetry, craft, sound, web-based work, socially engaged work, live experimentation, design, sharing of data from social science, medical, or natural science research – essentially we are not format-prescriptive! 
  • Science Gallery Bengaluru is also accepting proposals for public programmes in the lead up to and during the exhibition. This could include a film-festival, city walk, hands-on-workshop, talk series, theatre, dance, puppetry, stand-up/ open-mic/ improv, and a master class.
  • Keeping in mind the unique global context we find ourselves in we are especially looking for work that utilises digital platforms for engagement.
  • While our primary focus is on the exhibition space, we are keen on programming beyond the exhibition space and welcome proposals that could be hosted online, outdoors, or in other site-specific locations like lakes, laboratories, parks, or metro stations. We are happy to facilitate permissions where possible, if required. Please get in touch with us if you have specific questions about the exhibition space.


Projects supported via the Open Call for the exhibition can typically be funded by Science Gallery Bengaluru upto INR 300000 (including all costs artist fees, materials, equipment, shipping, travel etc.). Public programme proposals can typically be funded between up to INR 100000. 

Please note projects of larger scale could be considered only where additional partners/funding can be secured. We enthusiastically welcome proposals that work to a smaller budget or have a larger budget and are part funded through other means.


Seasons can include new or existing works, and we are happy to receive more than one submission from one person/team: what is critical is the fit for this specific Open Call.


Science Gallery Bengaluru will notify applicants if their submission has been successful by 1 June 2020. The gallery will be considering submissions during April and May, so if questions about your project are identified we might contact you for clarification during this period.


If we think your work is exciting and relevant, we will start a conversation about your Proposal with a view to establishing feasibility in June 2020.