Open Society Documentary Photography Project

There are presently no open calls for applications.

Deadline (EXTENDED): Wednesday, April 19, 2017 at midnight EDT

The Open Society Documentary Photography Project is soliciting submissions for a new joint exhibition and grant opportunity engaging with ideas of resistance. Selected projects will be exhibited in the Moving Walls 24 exhibition (October 3, 2017 – July 13, 2018) at the Open Society Foundations’ headquarters in New York. Selected artists will also receive a grant ($20,000-$30,000) to support ongoing or future work on these themes. Up to 8 artists will be selected. Download full application guidelines here.


The Open Society Foundations and our community of partners and grantees are deeply affected and alarmed by the global rise of repression, discrimination, hate, and violence based on identity and legal status, such as race or citizenship. This wave of discriminatory attitudes, behaviors, and policies may seem new, but often are symptoms of injustices deeply embedded in our societies.

At the same time, we are greatly inspired and energized by the ways in which artists and media makers are questioning, confronting, and providing alternatives to such divisive, discriminatory, and harmful narratives.

The Documentary Photography Project announces an exhibition and grant opportunity that embraces the role and agency of artists themselves in shaping our societies. In particular, we are seeking artists and projects whose goal is to resist, question, and/or affirm, not merely to illustrate or document negative impacts as a neutral observer. We invite artists, photographers, and other image-based practitioners who have made an ongoing commitment to engaging with ideas of resistance, and whose work addresses historical and contemporary threats to open society, to send us their work for consideration. 

Selected projects will be exhibited in the next installment of the Moving Walls exhibition series. Moving Walls 24 will be on view October 3, 2017 – July 13, 2018 at the Open Society Foundations’ headquarters in New York.

Selected artists will also receive a grant ($20,000-$30,000) to support the continuation of existing work or the creation of new work on these themes. This individual grant is intended to provide financial support to artists who see themselves as catalysts for change. We will consider grant proposals for implementation of any of the following phases of the project: production, exhibition, distribution, and/or audience engagement. Grantees will also be provided with networking opportunities with relevant Open Society staff and grantees.


Before applying, please visit our website to download the complete guidelines, which include full details about criteria, eligibility, selection process, FAQs, and a complete list of the information requested by this online submission form.

Still have questions? Contact the Documentary Photography Project at, using the subject line “Moving Walls 24."


Who We Are
The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to their citizens. Working with local communities in more than 100 countries, the Open Society Foundations support justice and human rights, freedom of expression, and access to public health and education.

The Open Society Documentary Photography Project seeks to advance socially engaged photography and its potential to drive change through exhibitions, grants, and public programs. Since 1998, we have featured—primarily through our Moving Walls exhibition series—over 200 photographers in our public gallery space in New York.