British Council’s Venice Fellowships Programme 2024

In the year when artist John Akomfrah will represent Britain at the Venice Biennale, SCAN is delighted to be able to support one place on the British Council’s Venice Fellowships Programme 2024– a unique opportunity for early career artists, researchers or arts professionals to spend a month in Venice during the Biennale 

As a partner organisation, SCAN will be accepting applications and will shortlist three candidates for one available place on the 2024 programme. The final selection will be made by the British Council. 

The successful applicant will have two roles: 

  • Exhibition ambassador: you will be the public face of the British Council and its commission; invigilating the British Pavilion and engaging with the public for around 23 hours per week. 
  • Research or creative practice: you will spend the rest of your time undertaking fieldwork to inform your creative practice or research. You will work towards a project connected to Venice Biennale and/or British Pavilion exhibition themes including racial injustice, colonial legacies, diasporic identities, migration and climate change.  

To apply you need to be free to undertake Fellowship in Venice over one month between April and November 2024. You must be able to attend seven sessions of an online induction from February to April 2024, (see below) as well as a series of talks and workshops throughout 2024, to prepare for the trip, network and build a community of practice. 

The Fellowship includes a grant of £3,000 to cover travel and living costs. 

SCAN is supporting this opportunity because our research shows it can be hard for some people to break into, or advance in, a career in the arts.  We are committed to ensuring that careers in the visual arts are open to people from a wide range of backgrounds. We hope to address some of the barriers that affect career development by working together to support these opportunities. 

About the Venice Biennale

The Venice Biennale (Italian: La Biennale di Venezia) is an international cultural exhibition hosted annually in Venice, Italy. The official Biennale exhibition is accompanied by 29 national pavilions, as well as “collateral events” across the city which each present their own showcase. This year, the British Pavillion will present new work by the artist and filmmaker John Akomfrah RA, curated by Tarini Malik and commissioned by the British Council. 

More information on the Venice Biennale is available here. 

Who can apply

Please note that while other UK partners in the Venice Fellowships programme may accept applications from students, students currently in full time higher/further education are not eligible for SCAN’s funded place on the programme. 

We are looking for creative people from all backgrounds who are interested and passionate about visuals arts, keen to share ideas with others and willing to experiment and try things. 

We particularly welcome applications from underrepresented groups in the creative sector, including: global ethnic majority, disabled, LGBTQIA+, and those facing social and economic barriers to accessing the arts. 

For SCAN’s opportunity, candidates must: 

  • be over 18 years old and based in Scotland.  
  • If successful commit to attend induction via Zoom on the following dates: 28 February, 6, 13, 20 and 27 March, 3 and 10 April 2024, from 6:30pm – 8:15pm UK time. 
  • be available to travel and live in Venice for 30 days from April to November 2024. The designated period will be confirmed after final selection. 
  • be able to manage the logistics and booking of their trip to Venice, including have a valid passport, arrangements for travel and finding accommodation, using the Fellowship grant money. (SCAN can offer advice and support with this) 
  • demonstrate experience and/or interest in working and engaging with people from diverse backgrounds. 
  • share the fellowships values and ways of working, including collaboration, generosity, kindness, camaraderie and flexibility.
  • already have an idea of a potential creative or research project to be developed while in Venice. 


We encourage applications from D/deaf, disabled and/or neurodivergent individuals. Please note the British Pavilion has an entrance with level access, however much accommodation in the city and many commuting routes and transport options in Venice have stepped access.  

If successful, you will receive an access form from the British Council, where you can let them know if you have access requirements for participating in the programme. SCAN will work collaboratively with the British Council to meet any individual access needs that require extra budget or time-support allocation. SCAN will work with you to help identify access needs, but it is each candidate’s responsibility to inform British Council about their individual access requirements if selected for the Fellowship. 

How to apply

To apply for the Venice Fellowships Programme, please download the application form here. Completed application forms should be submitted by email to Moira Jeffrey, Director of SCAN at [email protected] by 5pm, Wednesday 8 November 2023. Please put Venice Fellowship in the subject of your email. Interviews will be held online on Wednesday 22 November. 

We welcome applications in audio or video format if that is the most accessible method for you. 

Please also complete our equality and diversity monitoring form here – this is voluntary and anonymous. 

Further information

Detailed information on the Venice Fellowships Programme is available on the British Council’s website here 

A recording of the British Council’s online Q&A session is available here.

Further questions can be directed to [email protected].