A programme of residencies to foster experimentation in art and science in Switzerland and worldwide in partnership with Pro Helvetia.
Launched in April 2021, Connect is a collaboration between CERN and The Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia. For the next four years, it will serve as a platform to foster experimentation in the arts in connection with fundamental science. A series of artistic residency opportunities will be announced between 2021 and 2024 to take place at CERN, in Geneva, and in partner scientific organisations worldwide in Chile, South Africa, Brazil and India. Artists from Switzerland and from any of these countries will be invited to apply for research-led residencies, to explore ideas and develop new work inspired by science and in connection with the scientific communities.
Connect offers two residency formats: a 3-month residency at CERN for Swiss artists, which will be announced biennially; and a combined residency at CERN and in another international location in collaboration with prestigious scientific and cultural organisations – in Chile, South Africa, Brazil and India – happening annually.
In 2021, two calls for entries of Connect were announced. The first open call of Connect offers one Swiss artist or artistic collective a three-month residency at CERN to further their artistic research immersed in the Laboratory’s community. After a competitive process, a jury of cultural experts and scientists will select one project proposal to be developed during the residency.
The second call, Connect South Africa, inaugurates the international programme. Swiss artists and artists from East, West or Southern Africa are invited to submit research-led proposals in connection with particle physics and physics of the cosmos. One artist from each region will be invited to undertake a joint residency at CERN in Geneva, followed by a period in the array of astronomy observatories in South Africa, in connection with the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) and the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO). In the following years, similar artistic residencies will be announced in Chile, India, and Brazil. The two residencies are fully funded and coordinated by the curatorial teams of Arts at CERN, led by curator and head of Arts at CERN Mónica Bello, and Dr. George Mahashe, curator and lecturer at the Michaelis School of Fine at the University of Cape Town.
Swiss collective AATB has been selected for Connect. Swiss artist Ian Purnell and South African artist Kamil Hassim were selected for Connect South Africa. Both residencies are expected to start between February and April 2022, depending on organisational and travel limitations due to the global health emergency.
Ian Purnell (b.1988 in Basel) works in the intersection of visual arts, documentary filmmaking and performing arts.