Open Call Details

Robot sitting at a desk, part of Vincent Fournier's photography series The Man Machine. (c) 2010 Vincent Fournier


Open from 
4th July 2016, 10:00am IST to 1st September 2016, 12:00pm IST
Results by 
30th October
Artificial Intelligence

Special event just announced: Meet the curators on Thursday September 8th

“The future is already here – it's just not very evenly distributed."   — William Gibson

In an automated world, is it nearly time to put humans out to pasture? Does the future resemble a leisure-time utopia or a robot-tended human-zoo? Will the notion of work become a thing of the past if machines really can do everything better, faster and for longer? From driving taxis, to writing reports, to designing websites, there is or may soon be an artificially intelligent system better equipped to do your job at a fraction of the cost. If this trend reaches every corner of employment then what will be left for humans to do to in a world of work for which they need not apply?

In early 2017, Science Gallery Dublin will interrogate the supposedly seismic changes that artificial intelligence (AI) is foisting on society. Could this time really be different? Or is this another step in the familiar economic progression from agrarian to industrial to service, in which new technologies eventually create more jobs than they destroy? Are we facing a future where machines take on roles long believed to be the exclusive domain of humans, like artist, musician, writer or designer? For that matter, can machines create works of art, and if an AI creates it, is it ‘Artificial Art’?

Visitors will be challenged to consider the opportunities and pitfalls of a future where nearly every profession could be swiftly replaced by adaptive algorithms and robots, and to envision everyday life after such upheaval.

About HUMANS NEED NOT APPLY: The exhibition will include current demonstrations of AI capability and creativity, plus art and design speculations on a post-work world. Science Gallery Dublin will showcase the future of AI, but also ask how economists, sociologists and educators are (or are not) preparing us for a world where intelligent machines surpass us in nearly every skill our labour market values. Are we in a golden age of AI, or the dusk of our dominance?

A custom-designed AI will join our curatorial panel of experts in machine learning, media arts and the social sciences. HNNA will illuminate a future that is at turns alarming and exhilarating, where our jobs disappear while computers spawn endless, captivating beauty.

Open Call for proposals: Do you have a project that demonstrates the emerging abilities of artificial intelligence? Are you creating a new work of art or design that critiques or speculates on a future in which robots hold every job? Or maybe you’re dreaming up a performance in which artificially intelligent systems debate one another, do a stand-up comedy set or sculpt Michelangelo’s David in a new pose? We’d love to hear from you about your installation, object, interface, design or experiment.

Topics include but are not limited to:

  • Artificial Intelligence and Computational Creativity
  • Automation and the future of employment
  • Speculation on a post-work world
  • Shifting definitions of art and culture
  • Explorations of an automated world from Sociology/Economics/Psychology point-of-view
  • Co-creation using new technologies (distributed creativity)


  • Amber Case
  • Lynn Scarff
  • William Myers
  • Damien Henry

What makes a good Science Gallery open call proposal? We are looking for projects that match Science Gallery’s three core values: Connect, Participate and Surprise.  

Some tips for strong proposals:

  • We love works that invite the visitor to participate, create and discuss.
  • Great projects bring together art and science in a creative way. We generally avoid paintings about science or science that is evaluating art.
  • Relevance to our core audience of 15-25 year olds is a factor in curatorial decisions.
  • Defying categories is Good (it’s kind of a hybrid sculpture, event, installation-puzzle, with a crowdsourced edible citizen-science archive, plus a performance component that will influence our design for a speculative organism…).
  • Works can be playful or serious — most themes have room for both.
  • 2D is nice, but 3D is often nicer.  We don’t have a lot of wall space for screens, prints and the like, so we often opt for the actual object instead of just a picture of it.
  • A true connection to the theme is a must — avoid shoehorning an unrelated work.
  • Collaborations are great! Are you a cryptographer working with a cellist? Maybe you’re a comic book illustrator artist thinking of submitting a proposal with an immunologist? If you’re a marine geologist looking for a cheesemonger to work with, we might know just the person — just get in touch!


Science Gallery Dublin is seeking up to thirty works for our HUMANS NEED NOT APPLY exhibition. Proposals will be funded up to a maximum budget of €3500 (please note this is a maximum, not a target). Two outstanding original works may be commissioned with a higher budget of up to €8500. Please note that these are maximum amounts, not targets, and must include all costs including shipping, fees, production, travel (if necessary) and customs etc. We are happy to write letters of support for applicants seeking funding from elsewhere. 

Be sure to submit your proposal by Thursday, September 1st, 17:00, Dublin time.
Feel free to contact with any questions, queries, etc. 



Science Gallery Dublin is a proud partner of the European Digital Art and Science Network and is delighted to have HUMANS NEED NOT APPLY as part of our key activities in the network. HUMANS NEED NOT APPLY is kindly supported through the European Digital Art and Science Network and co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union.


Image: The Man Machine - Reem B #5 [Pal], Barcelone, Spain, 2010 - Vincent Fournier