Open Call: David Koloane Award 2023

Important dates:

  • Deadline for entries: 26 June 2023, 23H59pm (SAST)
  • The winner of the award will be announced at the end of June 2023.
  • Residency Dates: 1 July 2023 – 15 September. Candidates should consider their availability during the above timelines.

Please click the link to submit your application

For any queries please do not hesitate to contact us on

This year's Award is supported by National Arts Council and proceeds from the sales of the David Koloane Book: A Resilient Visionary by Standard Bank Art Gallery and Standard Bank Group

The 2023 edition of the Award will focus on aspiring critical arts writers, an often overlooked part of the creative eco system.

Applications for the 2023 David Koloane Award are officially open on 12 June 2023 and close on 26 June 2023, with outcomes to be announced on 30 June 2023.

The writing residency is anticipated to take place from 1 July to 15 September 2023.  

The award is open to South African, Johannesburg-based aspiring critical arts writers (aged 21-35) working in the fields of exhibition curating, journalism and creative writing.

The Award was initiated in 2010 to celebrate the life and career of Dr David Koloane (b.1938-2019), an internationally respected artist, curator, writer and founding member of the Bag Factory Artists’ Studios. In honour of David Koloane’s contribution to developing the arts industry through his ethos of mentorship and learning through exchange, the David Koloane Award benefits emerging artists and writers who demonstrate passion, dedication, and potential for excellence.

Recipients will receive an intensive three-month residency at Bag Factory Artists’ Studios, including a hot desk, a modest honorarium, travel and data stipends and mentorship from established writers, curators, editors and critical arts writers.

NB: The Award at this stage cannot support the re-location to and accommodation costs in Johannesburg, for the duration of the residency. This cost is to be borne by the recipient/s of the Award.


 The Bag Factory is a non-profit contemporary visual art organisation in Newtown, Johannesburg. With a pioneering 30-year history of providing a supportive infrastructure for artists, the Bag Factory is unique in combining art making with cultural debate and art exhibitions, thereby creating a fertile international environment for experimentation, innovation, and cultural dialogue between creatives in South Africa and the rest of the world. We provide studio space to a cross-generational community of Johannesburg-based artists, and we host a prestigious international artist and curator residency programme.

We present regular exhibitions in our gallery that showcase new work by emerging artists to the wider public, and we also support the professional development of artists and curators through workshops, mentorship, and the prestigious David Koloane and Cassirer Welz awards. All our programmes are accompanied by a public programme that encourages a greater understanding of contemporary visual art and stimulates interaction between artists and the local community. We are affiliated with the International Triangle Network.