Collaboration and Open call

03 December 2020–30 January 2021


Manifesting Systemic Change through Creative Waves

Design: Tyneisha van Veltum

A collaborative open call by Stichting Nederland Wordt Beter, The Black Archives/New Urban Collective, Black Queer & Trans Resistance NL, Kick Out Zwarte Piet (KOZP) and BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, for artists and writers to manifest the Manifesting Systemic Change Through Creative Waves manifesto.

Following the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis this past June, and in response to the countless other Black people killed by police in recent years, more than 60000 people took to the streets throughout the Netherlands. Alongside these historic #BlackLivesMatter protests and related campaigns, there has been an increasing awareness that the Netherlands is struggling with its own pervasive institutional racism. Amid this wave of recognition locally, many Black and other people of color have taken part in antiracist protests or have spoken out about racism and discrimination in this country for the first time. Policymakers and politicians have actively participated in the debate.​

Following these manifestations, Stichting Nederland Wordt Beter (NLWB), The Black Archives/New Urban Collective (TBA/NUC), and Black Queer & Trans Resistance NL (BQTR) organized public meetings in five provinces in the Netherlands. The output from these meetings, as well as interviews with experts, and online surveys conducted by the organizations have helped to inform the development of a new, collectively-written document, “Manifesting Systemic Change Through Creative Waves.” With its aim toward combating institutional racism and promoting Black emancipation, the manifesto will be presented to Black communities, the anti-racist movement, political parties, policymakers, institutions, and civil society. The manifesto includes advice and a set of requirements from and for Black communities to effectively tackle racism in various domains such as education, the labor market, art, and culture. It is not set in stone: we see it as a “living document” which can be adapted through engagement with Black communities and wider society. We expect to present the manifesto in January 2021.

In connection to this manifesto, and in further cultivation of a multi-pronged project of anti-racist change in the Netherlands, NLWB, TBA/NUC, and BQTR, along with Kick Out Zwarte Piet (KOZP) and BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, are launching an open call for artists and writers to “manifest the manifesto.” The call is driven by the crucial need to activate the manifesto, and to engage with it as a living document across several sectors of society. Conceived in collaboration with creative makers and thinkers, this call aims to deepen and visibilize the messages of the manifesto through creative forms. Further, its goal is to demonstrate progressive ideas in multiple forms of learning, seeing, reading, and experiencing, and to provoke continued adaptation and new forms of allyship and resistance.

Deadline for all proposals: before 31 January 2021. For more information on the open call and the application form, go to the website of The Black Archives.

On 10 December, an online event about the open call and the manifest is live streamed on the Facebook page of The Black Archives. The registration will be available to (re)watch, among others, on this web page.

Suggestions from the archive

Education Program

15 March–01 April 2021

Course: Art as Politics [rerun]

Due to popular demand, BAK Public Studies offers yet another rerun of the online course Art as Politics, taking place on the following dates: 15, 18, 22, 25, 29 March & 1 April 2021. This digital extension of BAK Public Studies, taught by Maria Hlavajova, is prompted by the urgency to continue collective thinking through, learning about, and imagining critical, politically-informed artistic practices that grasp—and intervene into—the present.
Deadline applications: 3 March. Deadline feewaivers: 23 February.

Assembly and Public Forum


16 December 2020, 19.00-21.00

Practicing Tactical Solidarities II: A Roundtable on Mutual Aid, Emergency, and Continuous Care

This locally-focused second edition of Practicing Tactical Solidarities: A Roundtable on Mutual Aid, Emergency, and Continuous Care features artists, organizers, and activists working in Utrecht, many of whom are current BAK Fellows. While addressing changing needs and urgencies in the protracted pandemic reality and its overlapping and related crises, the conversation contends with tactics and lessons in creating mutual aid networks, lasting support systems, and emergency care.


16 October, 08.00–29 November, 23.59 2020

Screening Tony Cokes at Stadhuisbrug, Utrecht

As part of exhibition Tony Cokes: To Live as Equals, Cokes’s video work (Evil.13: Alternate Versions) is screened in public space until 29 November 2020! The work is on view in the window of Stadhuisbrug 5 (until Monday 2 November 2020), and in the window of Utrecht City Hall, Stadhuisbrug 1 (until Sunday 29 November 2020).