Seeking proposals: art + ecología / award-residency


¡Toma! award by Joya: arte + ecología. Artists and climate change.
The ¡TOMA! AWARD is asking artists to submit proposals for works which sustainably utilise natural material found within the rain water catchment system described in Joya: arte + ecología’s project Sistemas Efímeros. The proposed works should reference the scant resource of water in the arid climate of Almería, Andalucía, whilst celebrating the subtle virtues of alpine desert ecosystems. The artist chosen by the selection committee will be awarded a three week residency at Cortijada Los Gázquez, the home of Joya: arte + ecología, to manifest the proposal with the help of assistants (where necessary).

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Sistemas Efímeros

SISTEMAS EFÍMEROS (ephemeral systems) is an arts led, trans-disciplinary collaborative project that seeks different ways to express ideas which will augment the perception of the natural value of arid landscapes. Simultaneously Sistemas Efímeros will promote sustainable and transferable adaptations to land use and water resources at a time of rapid environmental change.

The project focuses on the headwaters of the ‘Rambla del Cajar’, a traditional water catchment system in the Parque Natural Sierra María-Los Vélez, Almería, Andalucía, which 50 years ago had a functioning water harvesting and soil conservation system that in the late 1950’s fell out of use. This ‘rambla’ provides a unique opportunity to conduct a landscape scale ‘experimental’ restoration programme that has the potential to be up scaled and transferred to similar dry land environments worldwide that exist under the same climatic, water and demographic stress. As such the project must be considered as a microcosm protected by cultural and creative interventions.

We are realising this concept by bringing together for the first time a complementary group of research disciplines that have the expertise and experience in delivering ambitious projects such as this. The project will evaluate the viability, appropriateness and value of restoring this system considering the consequences of environmental change. Simultaneously the project will research the location creatively and experientially, engaging us affectively and giving us values that foster sensitivity to this system, to this landscape, to the world around us. The project’s trans-disciplinary contributors will benefit from the properties of parallel investigation, uniting the value of research and acquired knowledge.

Follow this link to find out more about Joya: arte + ecología’s project Sistemas Efímeros.

Water catchment area where the Project Sistemas Efímeros takes place, next to Cortijada Los GázquezWater catchment area where the project Sistemas Efímeros focuses on.


The award

A three week residency at Cortijada Los Gázquez, the home of Joya: arte + ecología, to manifest the proposal with the help of assistants (where necessary).
The winner of ¡TOMA! will have sole use of a thirty square meter studio and 20 hectares of land for the period. Accommodation and meals are included as is collection and return to the nearest public transport system. Resident artists will be featured on the Joya: arte + ecología web site, which will include biographical information and images. The work undertaken during the residency will also be documented and entered into our archive.


Selection committee

      • Brian Beckers, Lecturer of Landscape Archaeology, Free University of Berlin, Germany
      • Yamandú Canosa, Artist, Urugay and Spain
      • Fernando García-Dory, Artist and director of Inland-Campo Adentro, Spain
      • Ana García López, Vice Dean for Institutional Relations and Professor at the Drawing Department, Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Granada, Spain
      • Andy Harper, Artist, Lecturer in Fine Art, Goldsmiths University, London, United Kingdom
      • Sigrid Holmwood, Artist, London, United Kingdom
      • Jude and Mark Macklin, Artist and Lecturer in Fin Art / Professor of Physical Geography and Director of the Centre for Catchment and Coastal Research, Aberystwyth University, Wales, United Kingdom
      • Joya: arte + ecología, Cortijada Los Gázquez, Almería, Spain



  1. There is an administration fee of 15€ per application. Applicants should e-mail with their name, address and passport number / ID (Spanish legal requirement) stating their intent to enter whereupon they will receive instructions on paying the entry fee via PayPal.
  2. Once the administration fee is paid applicants are invited to submit a text of no more than 500 words in Spanish or English outlining their proposal for ¡TOMA!.
  3. Applicants should also submit 3 images contextualising their work to date. These images must be 300dpi and a maximum dimension of 1000 pixels on the longest side.
  4. The application should include up to 1 external link, where images etc. of their work can be found. A self published blog or web site is not sufficient.
  5. Name and contact details of someone who can act as a referee.


Closing date

Submissions will be accepted until 31st December 2013.
The winner will be announced by the end of January 2014. Joya: arte + ecología will then arrange with the recipient of the award the dates for the residency. The artist should come to Los Gázquez during 2014 to undertake the work that he or she proposed for ¡TOMA!, otherwise Joya: arte + ecología and the selection committee reserve the right to give the award to another applicant artist.

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