Organised and supported through the British Council and Creative Scotland Partnership  

British Council and Creative Scotland are creating an opportunity for a curators’ visit to Lagos (Nigeria) and Dakar (Senegal) to happen from 23 May –  2 June 2020 (inclusive of travel).  The delegation will be formed of up to 6 Scotland-based curators.  

The visit is being organised through the partnership between Creative Scotland and British Council and aims to foster long-term relationships between the cultural sectors in West Africa and Scotland; building on existing collaborations and providing scope for new opportunities to be explored between curators, artists, arts professionals and arts organisations.  


  • 23 May 2020:  Flights from Scotland to Lagos (Nigeria)
  • 24 May - 27 May 2020: Meetings, studio visits and networking events in Lagos (Nigeria) 
  • 28 May 2020:  Flights from Lagos (Nigeria) to Dakar (Senegal)
  • 28 May – 31 May 2020: Attendance at Dak’Art Biennale 
  • 1 June 2020:  Flights from Dakar (Senegal) to Scotland

Purpose of visit

Building on the Momentum programme and the British Council’s Sub-Saharan Arts team Briefing for the Scottish sector, this is a professional development opportunity for curators based in Scotland to gain or deepen their understanding and knowledge of the visual arts sector in Sub-Saharan Africa, by visiting two of its most relevant West African cities: Lagos in Nigeria, and Dakar in Senegal.  This activity will allow participants to engage with the Dak’art Biennale (on its fourteenth edition), as well as network with local curators, artists and producers in Lagos and Dakar, whilst advocating for Scotland’s vibrant art scene.  The purpose of the visit is to build on existing partnerships between Scotland and West African peers as well as to develop new opportunities for collaboration.  Another element of the visit will be to explore opportunities for emerging practice between Scotland and West Africa. 

The trip will focus on two principal locations: Lagos and Dakar.  It will cover activity such as:  

  • Engaging with the Dak’art Biennale programme
  • Attending networking events
  • Galleries and artist studios visits
  • Meetings with curators, directors and artists in Lagos and Dakar  

Who can apply?

This opportunity is available for up to 6 curators based across Scotland including freelance/independent practitioners.  Amongst the delegation we aim to ensure a mix of profiles including people/organisations with existing links, but also no previous connections in West Africa – to allow for sharing of knowledge and experience.  The delegation will be joined and supported by curator Natalia Palombo (Many Studios & The Gallow Gate Gallery), with additional staff support from Creative Scotland and British Council.  

This opportunity will prioritise those from small organisations and freelance independent curators who have less access to supported professional development opportunities.  

In addition to the 6 supported places, we are in the position to make available up to 3 self-funded places for individuals who can cover their own travel and accommodation costs and who would benefit from the networking and hosting activities on the ground.  Please contact Amanda Catto ( by 17th Feb 2020 to discuss this. 

How to apply?

British Council and Creative Scotland are promoting this opportunity by email, through social media and on their respective official websites.  On line applications should be submitted by 12 noon on 17 February 2020 using this link:

Please ensure you include the following details:

  • a short biography of yourself
  • an outline of the reasons why you would find this trip valuable and in what way it would support the development of your practice and /or your organisation’s objectives   
  • any anticipated benefits to the sector in Scotland and for (potential) partners in West Africa
  • any existing relationships or projects with West/Sub-Saharan Africa  
  • any specific outcomes that you would hope to achieve from taking part in this trip
  • details of any additional support or access needs and related costs (e.g. additional childcare) 
  • passport details & a photograph

Please note that for this trip you will need a passport which is valid for at least 6 months from the date of departure.   

In making our selection of candidates for this delegation, we will be looking to identify people for whom this trip would have most value and impact at this time, and where there are anticipated benefits to the sector in Scotland and for partners in West Africa.  Applications will be jointly assessed by British Council and Creative Scotland and successful delegates will be informed by 28 February 2020

Delegates will also be expected to attend a pre-departure briefing meeting in Edinburgh in the lead-up to the visit (date TBC). 


British Council and Creative Scotland will book and pay for delegates flights from Scotland to Lagos, Dakar and returning to Scotland and accommodation in Lagos & Dakar; and provide a grant to support the costs of visa fees and application process, inoculations and per diems. There is also funding available to assist with cost for additional support or access needs. 


UK or Irish passport holders currently do not be require a visa to enter Senegal for a period of six months or less. However, a visa is required for Nigeria (which usually requires a visit to London) and delegates will need to plan adequate time to apply, attend an appointment, processing (5 – 7 days) and for passport to be returned by pre-paid recorded or special delivery.

Please check for up to date information via:

Reporting on return to Scotland  

Delegates will be expected to reflect on their experiences in a feedback report to be submitted by 31 July 2020.  We also plan to hold an event in September to share the knowledge and experiences gained during the visit with peers in Scotland and delegates will be expected to attend / present on this occasion.

Follow-Up Subvention Funds

A minimum of £30,000 will be made available through the partnership between British Council and Creative Scotland to support follow up activity after the trip.

External links