Open Call: “Kippeln” – 21st Begehungen Festival


Troubled times. Farmers block roads, others cling to them. Motorcades honking their horns against the government. Tomato soup on Van Gogh! On Mondays, adults walk against the government, on Fridays, children protest against climate killers. Lying press, lying press!

The silent centre is against right-wing extremism. Animal rights must be protected, the education system must be reformed and in general:

Let’s all get our whistles out for better pay!


In the midst of these turbulent times, the art festival Begehungen is organising its 21st edition under the theme “Protest”.

Under this motto, an exhibition will bring together 20 – 25 works by international contemporary artists, which will be complemented by a festival programme with concerts, readings, lectures and performances.

The Begehungen art festival is looking for works of art that deal with the theme of “Protest!” on various levels. The exhibition is open to all genres of visual art. Existing works as well as conceptual works or performances can be submitted. At the end of the application period, an expert jury will select the works invited to the exhibition.

In installations, photographs, videos, drawings and paintings, the uprising can be tested, political action can be visualised as an artistic strategy and an attitude can be shown.

The aim of the festival is the artistic examination of different forms of protest and resistance as well as the visualisation of protest movements in the present day, but also of past decades across the globe.

The focus is on reflecting on social systems and structures as well as analysing discourses of domination. How does social dissonance arise? Where is division taking place today and where is reconciliation, and what does hope for a better future worth fighting for look like?

This year’s Begehungen art festival aims to explore these questions and at the same time call for social participation!The

The Begehungen Festival is an official part of the European Capital of Culture 2025 Chemnitz.

Closing date for submissions: 30/04/2024, 23:59. (CET)


The 21st edition of the Begehungen art festival will take place at a location that is closely linked to the protests in the GDR 35 years ago: back then, a group of citizens came together to change the GDR’s education system, among other things. Although the GDR was soon history, the idea took shape surprisingly quickly. On September 1st 1990, the new Chemnitzer Schulmodell (CSM) was opened as a place for progressive learning and teaching. It still exists successfully today, now at a new location.

The founding building at Charlottenstraße 52, formerly the Albrecht Dürer or Charlottenschule, was abandoned in 2012 due to structural defects – and now forms the authentic setting for the 2024 festival entitled “KIPPELN”.

The site can therefore be seen on the one hand as a utopia that has taken shape from the protests of the autumn of 1989, but on the other hand it also refers to the wounds and the transformation process of Chemnitz after reunification.

Numerous rooms on the ground floor of the school building and neighbouring buildings are available for the festival and the exhibition in particular: Former classrooms, the canteen, cellar rooms, the gym including changing rooms and an extensive outdoor area including the sports field can be used for artistic interventions and guarantee unusual access and diverse possibilities for artistic exploration.


The festival was founded in Chemnitz in 2003 and is now one of the most important art festivals in Saxony. At the first edition, twelve empty shops in the Sonnenberg district of Chemnitz were the venues for a photography exhibition. In the following years, the festival moved to the Brühl, a largely deserted shopping boulevard at the time, for several years, grew continuously and opened up more and more to other art genres. Since 2010, the art festival has changed its venue every year.

Since then, a former prison, empty cultural centres, abandoned allotment gardens, an old brewery, disused department stores, a drained swimming pool, an orphaned museum or an overgrown railway station have been the festival’s venues.

The Begehungen Festival sees itself as an inclusive and accessible festival. Admission to all programme items and the exhibition is free. The festival is largely organised on a voluntary basis by the members of Begehungen e.V. and many helpers.

The Begehungen Festival is an official part of the European Capital of Culture 2025 Chemnitz programme. Stefan Schmidtke, Managing Director Programme of the European Capital of Culture Chemnitz 2025 gGmbH: “The Begehungen art festival contains everything that makes Chemnitz European Capital of Culture 2025 – and has done for 20 years. “C the unseen”, the motto for the programme of the European Capital of Culture year, is also programmatic for the Begehungen.

The festival takes place in unusual locations and makes them visible. It invites international artists and the local neighbourhood to discover these places and enter into dialogue with each other. The walk-throughs open up spaces and new perspectives. (…) This is also what the European Capital of Culture stands for: encouraging people to participate, creating access and breaking down barriers. As a project of the European Capital of Culture Chemnitz 2025, the Begehungen art festival will network intensively with international partner festivals in the coming years and further professionalise itself through this exchange and raise its profile as a European festival.”


  • Dr Claudia Tittel, curator, artistic director of the 2024 festival
  • Irini Mavromatidou, artist, participant of the Begehungen Festival 2014
  • Carl Geißler, actor and former pupil at the school [festival venue]
  • One representative of Begehungen e.V.


Participation in the exhibition will be remunerated with an exhibition fee of 300 euros (gross).

Costs for shipping the works to and from the exhibition will be borne by the organiser.

Conceptual and/or participatory works can be realised with a maximum material allowance of 700 euros. If there is a need for coordinated assembly and dismantling by the artist or assisting persons, travel costs to and from the venue will be reimbursed and accommodation will be provided free of charge (maximum 10 days).

The following applies to performances: If it is ensured that the performance can be performed at the festival venue on at least 16 August, 17 August and 18 August, a total of 450 euros (gross) will be paid. In addition, travel and accommodation costs will be borne by the organiser (please state the place of travel in your application).

It is also possible to apply as a group. The exhibition fee is paid per work, but not per person.

Each artist may only submit one work.


The application portal can be accessed via this link to the application portal.

Please note:

  • It is only possible to apply with a login. This can be easily requested on the portal.
  • It is possible to save the application form temporarily.
  • Once submitted, applications can no longer be processed.
  • If not all mandatory fields are completed, the application cannot be submitted.

Important: Applications sent by e-mail or post will not be recognised! Only applications from our application portal will be considered!

Questions about the application: application (at)


You need:

  • A fully completed online form
  • A short portfolio of previous work (digital)
  • A short CV
  • An image of the work(s) to be exhibited or an audio or video file (as a link)
  • In the case of conceptual or participatory works, it is essential to state the time required for realisation and the approximate amount of material required
  • When applying, we ask about the type of artwork. This helps us to organise the selection process. The following options are available: “painting / graphics / photography”, “sculpture / sculpture / installation”, “media art / film / sound”, “performance” and “other”.
  • All documents must be provided in PDF format or as a link. The file size per PDF may not exceed the limit of 10 MB.


  • Application phase: 08.04.24 – 30.04.24
  • Closing date for submissions: 30/04/2024, 23:59. (CET)
  • Announcement of jury result: end of May 2024
  • Festival period: 15.08. – 23.08.2024

Apply here