Open Call Details

Left image: Tufa Towers at Mono Lake, CA by Eric Wienke, used under Creative Commons license: Right image: Enceladus courtesy NASA/JPL


Open from 
28th November 2017, 5:45am GMT to 17th January 2018, 5:00pm GMT
Results by 
30th March

[Please note: some applicants may have experienced problems with our online subission system, therefore we have extended the deadline by 24 hours - please submit entries by 5pm Irish time on January 17th]

Voir ci-dessous pour plus de détails en Français.

How do organisms survive in the deep sea, in outer space and inside volcanoes? Why do inhospitable settings spark our imagination and our appetite for adventure? What can extreme environments tell us about coping with climate change? How can art and design inspire and influence the pioneers exploring extreme environments? Should we adapt organisms and technologies to thrive under severe conditions?

LIFE AT THE EDGES will examine life in extraordinary environments, and humankind's passion for exploration, adventure and discovery.

Extreme places can provide a unique setting to expand our understanding of our climate and living systems. From arctic expeditions to deep sea discoveries, this exhibition is about exploring frontiers and limits, and boldly pushing the boundaries of space, humanity, science, technology, biology, and determination.

What might we find living in unexplored places that can inspire new technologies, medicines or architecture? As our own planet grapples with more extreme and precarious environmental conditions, how could the constraints of extreme environments lead to creative new tools, methods, microorganisms, and technologies? And will humans one day inhabit outer space or live underwater, or have we already contaminated these hard-to-reach places with space junk, plastic gyres and invasive species?

From terraforming entire planets to mapping the deepest ocean trenches, this exhibition will showcase the scientists, artists, designers and dreamers with eyes on the horizon — the ones looking for LIFE AT THE EDGES.


  • Alkaline, acidic, cold, hot, hypersaline, volcanic environments
  • Astrobiology / exobiology / Exoplanets
  • Upper atmosphere, low-pressure conditions and aerobiology
  • Analogue research stations (e.g. M.A.R.S.)
  • Self-Styled, recreational and celebrity explorers
  • Deep sea vents
  • Deserts and other inhospitable environments
  • Ecophysiology
  • Clothing for extreme conditions (especially environmental suits / space suits / diving suits / extreme cold weather (ECW) clothing / extreme environment clothing etc.)
  • Environmental changes and extreme landscapes, as a result of climate change
  • Extremophiles (everything from adrenaline junkies to chemosynthetic microorganisms)
  • Field kits, tools and techniques for extreme environments
  • Gut microbiome
  • High altitude research
  • Life in space
  • Marine biology
  • Polar exploration
  • Psychology, sociology, and value of exploration
  • Quarantine
  • Radiation
  • Search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), deep-space observation
  • Space exploration, Space Architecture / colonies / transport
  • Terraforming
  • Toxic environments (natural and human-made)
  • Xenobiology


We are seeking proposals for up to twenty works for our LIFE AT THE EDGES exhibition. Proposals may be new or existing works, and will be funded up to a maximum budget of €3000, which should include all artist fees, materials, equipment, shipping, travel etc. Please note that these are maximum amounts, and we enthusiastically welcome proposals below this limit. We are happy to write letters of support for applicants seeking funding from elsewhere.

Science Gallery, in partnership with the French Embassy in Ireland, is delighted to announce a special €1000 bursary for French speaking artists working with digital technology and art. The award will support the travel and accommodation of one artist participating in LIFE AT THE EDGES. Applicants should note their interest in this bursary on their application form.


  • Dr. Mary Bourke, Geomorphologist, Department of Geography, Trinity College Dublin.
  • Prof. Peter Gallagher, Professor in Astrophysics / Associate Dean of Research, Trinity College Dublin.
  • Miha Tursic, Waag Society & co-founder of Cultural Centre of European Space Technologies.
  • Prof. Andy Wheeler, Chair of Geology, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University College Cork.
  • Melodie Yashar, designer, co-founder and member of SEArch+ (Space Exploration Architecture). 


What makes a good Science Gallery Dublin open call proposal? We are especially looking for both existing and new projects that match Science Gallery Dublin’s three core aims: to Connect, Participate, and Surprise. Some tips for strong proposals:

  1. We love works that invite the visitor to participate, create and discuss.
  2. Great projects bring together art and science, in a creative way. We generally avoid science that is evaluating art or art that didactically illustrates science.
  3. Relevance to our core audience of 15-25 year olds is a factor in curatorial decisions.
  4. 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 portray a speculative future organism…”)
  5. However, a true connection to the theme is a must. We encourage you to take a moment to consider fit before committing your valuable time and energy to the application.
  6. We have limited wall space, so we usually have more room for objects/sculptures.
  7. 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 — get in touch and we might be able to help.



Exposition  ”Life at the Edges”


Ouvert à partir du 28 novembre 2017, 5h45 GMT au 16 janvier 2018, 23h45 GMT

Résultats pour le 30 mars

Dates de présentation de la saison : Juin à septembre


Mots clés

La vie


Comment les organismes survivent-ils en haute mer, dans l'espace ou à l'intérieur des volcans ? Pourquoi les environnements inhospitaliers suscitent-ils notre imagination et notre envie d'aventure ? Que peuvent nous dire les environnements extrêmes pour faire face au changement climatique ? Comment l'art et le design peuvent-ils inspirer et influencer les pionniers qui explorent les environnements extrêmes ? Devrions-nous adapter les organismes et les technologies pour prospérer dans des conditions difficiles ?

LIFE AT THE EDGES examinera la vie dans des environnements extraordinaires et la passion de l'humanité pour l'exploration, l'aventure et la découverte.

Les endroits extrêmes peuvent fournir un cadre unique pour élargir notre compréhension de notre climat et de nos systèmes vivants. Des expéditions arctiques aux découvertes en haute mer, cette exposition vise à explorer les frontières et les limites et à bousculer audacieusement les frontières de l'espace, de l'humanité, de la science, de la technologie, de la biologie et de la détermination.

Que pourrions-nous trouver de vivant dans des endroits inexplorés qui peuvent inspirer de nouvelles technologies, des médicaments ou l'architecture? Alors que notre propre planète se bat contre des conditions environnementales plus extrêmes et plus précaires, comment les contraintes des environnements extrêmes pourraient-elles conduire à de nouveaux outils, méthodes, micro-organismes et technologies créatifs? Et les humains vont-ils un jour habiter dans l'espace ou vivre sous l'eau, ou avons-nous déjà contaminé ces milieux difficiles d'accès avec des débris spatiaux, des ‘tourbillons’ de plastique et des espèces endémiques?

De la terraformation de planètes entières à la cartographie des fosses marines les plus profondes, cette exposition présentera les scientifiques, les artistes, les concepteurs et les rêveurs avec un regard au delà de l’horizon - ceux qui cherchent la vie à la frontière – Life on the Edges.



Environnements alcalins, acides, froids, chauds, hypersalins, volcaniques
Astrobiologie / exobiologie / exoplanètes
Haute atmosphère, conditions de basse pression et aérobiologie
Stations de recherche analogiques (par exemple M.A.R.S.)
Self-Styled, loisirs et explorateurs de célébrités
Évents de mer profonde
Déserts et autres environnements inhospitaliers
Vêtements pour les conditions extrêmes (en particulier les combinaisons environnementales / combinaisons spatiales / combinaisons de plongée / vêtements de froid extrême (ECW) / vêtements de l'environnement extrême, etc.)
Changements environnementaux et paysages extrêmes résultant des changements climatiques
Extrémophiles (tout à partir des junkies d'adrénaline jusqu'aux micro-organismes chimiosynthétiques)
Kits de terrain, outils et techniques pour les environnements extrêmes
Microbiome intestinal
Recherche en haute altitude
La vie dans l'espace
Biologie marine
Exploration polaire
Psychologie, sociologie et valeur de l'exploration
Recherche d'intelligence extraterrestre (SETI), observation de l'espace lointain
Exploration spatiale, Architecture spatiale / colonies / transport
Environnements toxiques (naturels et artificiels)


Nous sommes à la recherche de propositions,  jusqu'à vingt œuvres pour notre exposition LIFE AT THE EDGES. Les propositions peuvent être des œuvres nouvelles ou existantes, et seront financées avec un budget maximum de 3000 €, incluant tous les frais d'artistes, matériel, expédition, voyage, etc. Veuillez noter que ce montant est un plafond, et nous accueillons avec enthousiasme les propositions en dessous de cette limite. Nous rédigeons volontiers des lettres de soutien pour les candidats à la recherche d’autres financements.

La Science Gallery, en partenariat avec l'Ambassade de France en Irlande, est heureuse d'annoncer une bourse spéciale de 1000 € pour les artistes francophones travaillant avec la technologie numérique et l'art. Le prix servira à financer le voyage et l'hébergement d'un artiste participant à LIFE AT THE EDGES. Les candidats doivent noter leur intérêt pour cette bourse sur leur formulaire de candidature.

Panel d’experts / commissaires de l’exposition

Dr. Mary Bourke, géomorphologue, Département de géographie, Trinity College Dublin.
Peter Gallagher, professeur d'astrophysique / vice-doyen en charge dela recherche, Trinity College Dublin.
Miha Tursic, Waag Society et co-fondateur du Centre culturel des technologies spatiales européennes.
Prof. Andy Wheeler, Chaire de géologie, École des sciences biologiques, de la terre et de l'environnement, University College Cork.
Melodie Yashar, designer, co-fondateur et membre de SEArch + (Space Exploration Architecture).


Qu'est-ce qui fait une bonne candidature pour cet appel à projet de la Science Gallery Dublin?

Nous sommes particulièrement à la recherche de projets existants ou nouveaux qui correspondent aux trois principaux objectifs de Science Gallery Dublin: Se connecter, Participer et Surprendre.


Quelques conseils pour présenter des propositions de qualité :

Nous aimons les œuvres qui invitent le visiteur à participer, créer et discuter.

Les meilleurs projets associent art et science, de manière créative. Nous évitons généralement la science qui évalue l'art ou l'art qui illustre didactiquement la science.

La pertinence des œuvres pour notre public cible de 15 à 25 ans  est un facteur important dans les décisions de la commission.

Il est bon de s’extraire des catégories («c'est une sorte de sculpture hybride, d'événement, d'installation-puzzle, avec des archives de citoyens-sciences comestibles crowdsourcing, plus une composante de performance qui dépeindra un organisme futur spéculatif ...»)

Cependant, une vraie connexion au thème de l’exposition est un must. Nous vous encourageons à prendre un moment pour réfléchir avant de consacrer votre temps et votre énergie à cet appel à candidature.

Nous avons un espace mural limité et plus d'espace pour les objets / sculptures.

Les collaborations sont géniales! Êtes-vous un cryptographe travaillant avec un violoncelliste? Peut-être êtes-vous un illustrateur de bandes dessinées qui pense à soumettre une proposition à un immunologiste? Si vous êtes un géologue marin à la recherche d'un fromager, il se peut que nous connaissions la bonne personne - contactez-nous et nous pourrons vous aider.




Can you accept applications for live performances in this call?



Hi Eleanor — 

Nothing is off limits, so live performances are a possibility as long as it closely fits the theme of the open call. 

I have a number of works which fit the brief for this exhibition. could you tell me if it is permitted to make multiple submissions? i am considering two. thanks! andy gracie

Hi Andy — It is totally fine to make multiple submissions if you feel they fit the theme of the open call. In the past some applicants have had multiple pieces chosen by the curatorial panel to be in the same exhibition. 

Dear Science Gallery Team,

I'm now developing a new project BIOBANK about the knowledge we can get from aquatic micro-organisms. The project could be presented as an interactive video-documentation and one or several sculptures. I don't know how shall I submit it: one sculpture+video could be a part of a group exhibition. But several sculptures+video+graphic documentation+public events could be a whole exhibition. What are you looking for as a project scale?

thank you, and have a good Christmas holiday!

kind regards,

Olga Kisseleva 

Hi Olga — Our open call exhibitions are group shows, and our space is somewhat limited, so woudl reccomend your application reflect these parameters. Having said that, you can submit a large and/or ambitious project as part of a group show. Please see our YouTube channel to get a sense of the size of the space and the number and scale of pieces usually included in a group exhibition at Sc



hi there,

Apologies if I've overlooked something, but I;m unclear as to what exactly is meant by 'fit for theme' versus 'project description (as it relates to open call)' ?

many thanks


Hi Michele – Project description would be a detailed description of your proposed project, in order for the curatorial panel to understand what it is. Fit for theme is to allow you to justify how the project fits with the overall theme of the exhibition. We hope it will be useful to pause and think how exactly it will fit into the context of LIFE AT THE EDGES, especially based upon the Open Call description that includes a helpful "topics and directions" section.

I hope that helps!


1) When is the life at the edges exhibition expected to begin and for how long will it run?

2) Will help be available at the venue to put up an installation?

3) Will power source + lights be provided?

Thanks, in advance!

Hi Jyoti –

1) The dates are 22.06.18 - 30.09.18

2) We have an experienced team of techical staff that will be available to help with install

3) We will provide power souce and lights

Looking foward to reading your submission! :)

Hello, SG team,
Some more questions - Are participants expected to stay in Dublin during the entire duration of the exhibition?  If yes, do they have to organize and pay for their own accommodation, meals, etc. for the entire period?

Hi Jyoti – Participants are not expected to stay for the duration of the exhibition. If it is necessary for an artist to be there for install, then we will organise travel and accomodation. 


One of the artworks I'm submitting is a short audio piece in mp3 format. How do I submit that and where in the submission form do I enter it? 



Hi Pauline – You are only able to upload mp4 files in the application. However, if you do an internet search there are many tools that can convert mp3 files into mp4, and that way you would be able to upload your file. Hope that helps!

Thank you for that,

However, I'm still unsure where in the application form is the place to enter my audio. The first possible option seems to be where it says to "upload a video application - instead of filling out this form". Or the second option, "Embed a video application".  But neither of these options seem appropriate for my audio. Can you advise please?

Thanks again. 

Hi Pauline – it should be possible to upload the video using both options and still fill in the form. We will receive the video and application together on one form. :)

Hi there from New Zealand! Just wondering if applicants have been notified yet of the outcome of the open call, or if it has been delayed?  Thanks  :)

Hi Michaela, 

All participants should have heard back by now. What is the name of your submission and I'll check with the team here?