Open Society Documentary Photography Project

There are presently no open calls for applications.

**With Current EDITS**

Deadline: Friday, March 16, 2018, 4:59pm ET

The Open Society Documentary Photography Project is soliciting submissions for a new joint exhibition and grant opportunity focused on the topic of migration. Selected projects will be exhibited in the Moving Walls 25 exhibition (September 26, 2018 – July XX, 2019) 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 the same theme. Up to 8 artists will be selected.


The Open Society Foundations and our community of partners and grantees are deeply affected and alarmed by the ongoing global refugee crisis and the rise of policies and narratives that are harmful to migrants and asylum seekers during what has been the largest movement of peoples since World War II, fueled by protracted conflicts, climate change, and growing economic inequality worldwide.[SR1] 

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 for artists working thematically on the intersection of migration, belonging, and identity. Embracing the role and agency of artists themselves in shaping our societies, we are exclusively interested in work that comes from the perspective of migrants, refugees, and/or asylum seekers themselves, or is made through deep collaboration with these communities.  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 themes of migration and identity, 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 25 will be on view September 26, 2018 – July XX, 2019 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 the same theme. 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.

 [SR1]From IMI’s strategy.


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 25."


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.