Open Call: SSW x Counterflows Caregivers Residency

Duck egg blue mats cover a lino floor. They have white and black taped symbols all over. In the top right corner of the photo a person wearing a black jumpsuit kneels, facing away from the camera. They have bare feet. They are lifting a child in mustard yellow trousers up from a greeny-blue walking aid.Laura Bradshaw, SSW x Counterflows Caregivers Residency 2021. Film still: Laura Bradshaw

Deadline for applications: Friday 20 May 2022, 12 noon BST

The care of others is central to the collective survival of our world yet is deeply undervalued within our society. This is often mirrored in the structures of support created for artists. 

The SSW x Counterflows Caregivers residency is shaped to support artists who undertake this essential care work. It is set up to provide a nourishing, open and flexible residency structure to serve their diverse needs. 

Caring for family (bio or chosen), community and/or kin, either professionally or informally can form and create artistic practices as well as disrupt them. We recognise how difficult it is for artists with caring responsibilities to grasp time, energy, resources and focus for their practices. This is particularly the case when support networks have been disrupted, home and work have become tangled up and funding diverted through the Covid-19 pandemic.

The SSW x Counterflows Caregivers residency offers artists funding, flexibility, respite and space for self-care, to focus on their own needs and support their continued learning and development. The residency is now in its second year and is running alongside a wider Radical Care project to embed and sustain support for artist-caregivers at SSW and Counterflows. You can read more about this project here

Further information

The four weeks of residency will take place between August 2022 and March 2023, dependent on the artist’s needs and SSW’s availability. The residency can be scheduled in one longer or more shorter blocks. There are further details about this in the application pack and FAQs.

For this residency applicants should have experience in working with sound and/or experimental performance in some form. In 2022 the SSW x Counterflows residency will support 2 artists. Through this residency we want to continue to learn with the selected artists to develop how both organisations can best support caregivers, in this residency and wider activity.

Please read the Residency Application Pack for full information about the residency and how to apply. Don’t hesitate to contact us at SSW if you have any questions about this opportunity, if you have technical difficulties with your application, or you have any access requirements that we can support you with in the application process.


To support residency activity, the selected artist will receive:

  • £1500 artist fee
  • £300 travel budget
  • £300 materials budget
  • A four week residency at SSW with use of studio, workshops and technical support.
  • Accommodation at SSW, either in the house we rent or on site, depending on availability and your needs.
  • A budget of £1000 to support access and care costs to enable the artist to take part in the residency.


To apply for the SSW x Counterflows Caregiver’s Residency you must:

  • Identify as a caregiver
  • Have experience making experimental sound or performance based work
  • Be based in Scotland 
  • Be willing/ able to travel to SSW and participate in the residency with the support and timeline outlined.

We have written more about these criteria in the Residency Application FAQs. If you aren’t sure if you are eligible to apply, please get in touch.

How to apply

Please complete and submit the online form to apply for this residency (click here).

You can apply in the format that feels most comfortable for you, either text, video or audio. We have no preference and will only evaluate the content of each application, not its production.

There is a .pdf version of the application questions here, and a MS Word version here. You can use these to prepare your responses to the questions, before completing the online form.

If, for access reasons, you would prefer to not submit through the online form, complete either the .pdf or .word version of the questions and email the completed form to jenny@ssw.org.uk with “Caregivers Residency Application” in the subject, before the deadline.

There’s lots of information in the Residency Application Pack detailing how to apply for the role and the selection process, including what we are looking for in your application. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

To support your application

We see the multiple and intersecting barriers experienced by artists in accessing funding and support for their practices, due to their ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability and socio-economic background among others. 

At SSW and Counterflows we are working to address and dismantle these barriers, and actively encourage artists who are underrepresented in our programmes to apply for funded residencies. This could be artists who experience racism, artists who are disabled and/or neurodivergent, artists who are trans, non-binary and/or queer, and artists from lower socio-economic backgrounds among other underrepresented and oppressed identities. 

To support your applications we have created a selection of resources and further information:

Residency Application Pack pdf | MS Word | Large Print | Audio

Frequently Asked Questions pdf | MS Word | Large Print | Audio

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