All disciplines

Residency in South Asia

Applications can be submitted from: 1 January

Target group
Practitioner with connection to Switzerland
Submission deadline
1 March


Three-month residencies at a partner institution in South Asia (see below for a full list of partners).

For Whom

Cultural practitioners from Switzerland who are active in any of the disciplines supported by Pro Helvetia. Applications from both individuals and artist duos are accepted.

Selection Criteria

  • Motivation behind the desired context
  • Sufficient knowledge of English or the language(s) of the destination in question
  • A concrete research topic with a lasting impact

In addition to these specific criteria, the apply.

Financial Contribution

  • Accommodation
  • Travel costs
  • Daily allowances
  • Professional support
  • Workstation (on request)
  • Contribution towards production/material costs (on request)
  • In addition, parents can apply for financial support of up to CHF 1,000 per month to put towards childcare or to use for the travel expenses of their children and, if applicable, a caregiver. Applicants must submit an approximate budget of all expenses in advance.

Content Of Application

  • Detailed explanation of motivation behind the chosen context and artistic research
  • Desired length of stay and chosen destination
  • CV and portfolio
  • The application must be submitted in English

Format-specific Exclusion Criteria

Simultaneous applications by cultural practitioners in Switzerland for a residency in the regions of the liaison offices and New York will be considered if they have a compelling connection to the respective region in terms of content. A separate application must be submitted for each destination. In the case of a call for applications, a maximum of one application per person will be approved.

Application Deadlines and Decision Timelines

Applications can be submitted from1 January
Submission deadline1 March
Notification of decisionWithin four months
Earliest start date for the projectThe following year

Additional Information

Pro Helvetia assumes no responsibility for the approval of visa applications from artists, accompanying children, partners, family members or caregivers.

Our residency partners

Below is a selection of residency partners in the region. This network is varied and in flux, responding to the dynamic contexts of the region. Located in urban centres and rural settings, our partners work across a variety of disciplines and formats in fixed spaces or as open platforms. Artists applying for a residency may specify which partner best fits their proposal. It is not necessary to contact the potential partner institution beforehand. Please note that in case of selection, the partner institution may change depending on availability.

List of residency partners as table

Britto Arts TrustDhaka, BangladeshBritto Residency Program often focuses on a larger ecosystem that benefits both the local and international artists developing networks and sharing knowledge. As Britto does not have any more regular funding for the residency program over the last few years, we have been organizing the residency loosely. The residency now depends on projects and available grants/ funding that can be raised using various resources.


We have a studio space adjacent to a social kitchen as well as a small work station. We are also in the process of  developing an online as well as offline archive, a physical space that can provide knowledge about Britto’s 21 years journey . Britto is situated in the middle of Dhaka city. The cultural institutions such as Alliance Francaise, Goethe Institut, British Council, Bengal Foundation, Drik Picture Library and all the galleries are within walking/ rickshaw riding distances.


The residencies are process based rather than final products. However, since Britto space is used for multiple purposes, there are possibilities for the participants to use it in various ways. We often end the residency with a public event though.
Visual arts, Curation, Research
Srihatta – the Samdani Art CentreSylhet , BangladeshA unique combination of sculpture park, exhibition, residency, and education programme, Srihatta imagines what an experimental artist-centric institution can be in the 21st Century, beyond of western-centric paradigms. A 10,000-square-foot residency space houses eleven brick-dyed, cast-concrete apartments, with windows facing Srihatta’s landscape. Created as a meditative space to inspire creativity and mesmerize the senses, these apartments have 11-foot ceilings – each with a different species of local scented tree growing inside. Srihatta encourages artists to collaborate with the environment and the local community for long term, growing projects, where creativity, the weather, time, ritual and maintenance come together to weave our relationship with nature and each other closer together.Multidiscipline, including visual arts, curation, literature, design, performing arts, architecture
1Shanthiroad Studio/GalleryBengaluru, India1Shanthiroad, Bengaluru, is an art space founded by Suresh Jayaram that nurtures creativity and cutting-edge art practice, situated in the centre of the city. The Studio/Gallery at 1Shanthiroad provides space for slide lectures, small conferences, installations, performances, screenings, and informal gatherings. It is administered by a not- for- profit trust VAC –Visual Art Collective. Since its inception in 2003 1Shanthiroad has grown to house artists from diverse countries in its residency programs.Multidiscipline
Indian Music Experience MuseumBengaluru, IndiaWe encourage artists and musicians interested in doing a residency with us in the following directions:

Digital archive of Indian music – There is ample material in the museum to spark inspiration and encourage artists in residence to work on project ideas with materials in the museum and also form collaborations with local musicians for study, research or performances.

Creating an expression (performance, visual or digital) – IME provides an enriching and conducive environment for artists to immerse themselves in a musical heritage that is many centuries old and has influences from around the world. This is ideal for artists seeking inspiration from the different forms of Indian music, and to exploring local forms of music traditions and practices.

Interpreting our collection – IME invites musicologists, historians, artists and professionals working in the field of music to interpret the museum’s collection through different lenses to offer new perspectives that may broaden the scope of scholarship around the museum’s collection.

Music across borders – Music knows no borders. There are countless accounts of several path-breaking Indian musicians who’ve travelled the world and collaborated with international artists to produce seminal works of fusion in the museum. There is ample scope to research and unravel interesting stories on fusion music, the socio-political contexts in which they evolved, the influences they imbibed along the way, and its significance today that could make for a great exhibition, documentary or a paper.

We also encourage artists to go through our website and develop their own residency ideas based on their areas of interest in music and their artistic practice.
Sangam HouseBengaluru, IndiaThe intention of Sangam House is to bring together writers from around the world to live and work in a safe, peaceful setting, a space made necessary on many levels by the world we now live in. Sangam House seeks to give writers a chance to build a solid and influential network of personal and professional relationships that can deepen their own work, in effect, expanding and diversifying literature. We believe that literature can and must remain a thriving force of illumination for our times.Our program also facilitates interaction between the visiting writers and local communities. Cultivating such an intersection infuses local communities with inspirations and new ideas, while allowing each participating writer to deepen their understanding of the diverse emotional and social climates in which literature is conceived and received.Literature
Sunaparanta Goa Centre for the ArtsGoa, IndiaOur Artist-In-Residence Lab (AIR-L) is designed to nurture creativity, research and experimentation. It offers a space for artists and cultural operators to critically examine existing practices through exchange and dialogue, forging new connections among practitioners across disciplines. An immersive residency programme, AIR-L offers an experiential opportunity of interdisciplinary research and exchange. It encourages projects that address new approaches related to our contemporary context and that can offer new understandings and perspectives of our society.

AIR-L provides the space and resource for artists and creatives to develop concepts dedicated to the interaction of the local social, cultural and economic morphology & contemporary art practices. It encourages socially innovative art processes and provides a framework in which various strategies and challenges can be shared and critically assessed. AIR-L seeks to deepen conversations around sustainability where artists from different geographies can collaboratively and collectively reflect and deepen conversations around sustainability through ongoing practice and research.
Visual arts and creatives combining drawing, performance, sound, with generative processes or code-based practices.
Khoj International Artists AssociationNew Delhi, IndiaKhoj is an autonomous not-for-profit contemporary arts organization created in 1997. Through international, on-site, off-site and often hyper local programmes and residencies Khoj supports and incubates emerging, experimental and transdisciplinary creative practices and pedagogies that look at art and its various intersections with other disciplines such as gender, urbanisms, ecology, technology and social practice. The residency at Khoj provides time and space to the artists to engage, respond and present their work in a historical socio-economic context, allowing for inclusivity, participation, and artistic interventions, in small but palpable ways. The residency acts as a platform for dialogue, experimentation, and exchange, supporting the development of their artistic practice while building a forum and a network of interdisciplinary artists.Visual Arts, Sonic Art, Installation, Sculpture, Digital Art
Adishakti Theatre Arts Laboratory For Theatre Art ResearchPuducherry, IndiaAdishakti is a contemporary theatre research and repertory company founded by thespian the late Veenapani Chawla in Mumbai in 1981. After developing and performing our first five productions in Mumbai we are now operating from our three-and-a-half-acre campus near Auroville, Pondicherry.Visual arts, Performance, Theatre, Research, Traditional arts
The Alice Boner InstituteVaranasi, IndiaThe Alice Boner Institute (ABI) residency programme is open to artists in the broadest sense of the word. This includes visual artists, writers, curators and scholars.
Located at Assi Ghat on the banks of the river Ganga, the ABI is an old house with heritage architecture. It was once the home of the Swiss artist and scholar, Padma Bhushan Dr. Alice Boner, from 1935 to 1978.
Today the Institute is a residency space for artisitc and academic research.
Residencies are typically offered for a minimum of one month and a maximum of three months. During the course of their stay, residents are expected to engage with other institutional networks as well as hold presentations, readings, and workshops for a public audience. Residents at the Institute are provided with comfortable living, and studio facilities, and meals from the in-house kitchen. Wi-fi, laundry and research asssitance are also provided.
The interior of the Institute can host intimate exhibitions, and a modest venue on the terrace can be used for short performances and screenings.
Short stays of less than 3 weeks or weekend visits do not fulfill the criteria of the residency programme. The programme will be most beneficial to individuals whose research deals with the arts of India, or for whom the cultural context of Varanasi is integral.
Multidiscipline. Visual Arts, Literature, Music, Theatre, Film & Photography, Urbanism, Architecture, Curatorial Studies
BikalpaKathmandu, NepalBikalpa Art Foundation offers seasonal residency programs throughout the year. The residency consists of six weeks of studio work and a week-long open studio/ exhibition at the end. The type of exhibition will depend on the nature/ form of artwork produced by the artist during the residency period. The artist will also be given an opportunity to engage in different sociocultural activities, interactions, workshops, presentations, networking, and artist gatherings during the residency.Multidiscipline including performance art, multimedia, film/ video, installation, sound, photography, experimental music, and any other forms of visual arts, also literature and curation.
Kaalo 101Kathmandu, NepalAt Kaalo.101, we aim to create a socially conscious, completely independent creative space that uses art to uplift emerging Nepali artists while engaging with our surrounding physical, social and cultural environment through an accessible, communicative and collaborative exchange.

Kaalo.101 is not only a physical space but also a safe and comfortable home for our diverse and transcultural family of versatile artists and activists. We support people with questions and aim to offer a safe environment to present any kind of contemporary art and express criticism by providing solidarity and empowerment. We value the vibe of an accepting and supporting family and don’t try to fit anybody’s ideas about art and society but explore our own possibilities, values, beliefs and non-hierarchical coexistence. We encourage individuality and empower people to go beyond what they expect is possible  ⁠— we aren’t just an art space but a living, breathing house. Our space, the art in it and the connected community try to relate Nepal’s cultures, histories and heritage with contemporary perspectives to share experimental works and thoughts that connect to both contexts. This juxtaposition of our physical and cultural setting with contemporary, critical and progressive approaches, alongside our majorly Nepali (but as well international) community, gives us fertile ground to continually learn, unlearn and relearn from each other and the space around us.
Visual Arts, Music & Sound, Literature, Performance, Research
Matca Space for PhotographyHa Noi, VietnamMatca’s residency space is on the 6th floor of the creative complex at 48 Ngoc Ha, Ba Dinh, Hanoi, on top of Sóng Sánh Café, Matca Space for Photography, and our studio. Located at the political center of Vietnam, it is immediately surrounded by sights of historical significance including the Ho Chi Minh Museum, B-52 Lake, and Lenin Park where skateboarders hang out every afternoon. The quaint neighborhood will also provide artists with fascinating insights into local life as well as the city’s booming art scene. Supermarkets, public transport, and many well-known food and drink establishments are within walking distance.

The residency is intended for lens-based practitioners and will suit those seeking a space to pursue their personal endeavors. Artists in residence will also have access to our photobook collection and frequent rotation of activities such as exhibitions, talks and book showcases often attended by young, intellectually curious audiences.
Visual arts, Photography

Applications can be submitted from: 1 January

Image by ROLI Deluxe

General Requirements


Pro Helvetia promotes the professional contemporary Swiss art and cultural production (without film) with a view to diversity as well as national and international reach. It supports the creation of new artistic works and productions, the exchange between Switzerland’s various linguistic regions, the dissemination of Swiss art and culture outside Switzerland and international cultural exchange. As a national foundation, Pro Helvetia supplements the promotional activities of Swiss cantons and municipalities and only supports projects that are cross-regionally or internationally recognised.

Pro Helvetia will only consider funding applications if they are complete and have been submitted on time.

To be eligible for support, projects must

  • have a clear connection to Switzerland
  • be of nationwide importance
  • be adequately co-funded by other public or private means
  • respects/guarantee fair working conditions

Connection to Switzerland

A connection to Switzerland is given, if one of the following conditions is met:

  • The production or project in question is developed or implemented by artists and cultural practitioners, who verifiably hold Swiss citizenship or are permanent residents of Switzerland and who are regularly artistically involved in relevant events in Switzerland.
  • The project is created, developed, or implemented by an independent group or cultural institution whose place of production is in Switzerland and who is regularly and publicly active in Switzerland.

Nationwide relevance

Nationwide relevance is given, if one of the following conditions is met:

  • The art and cultural practitioners participating in the project are regularly involved in programmes of nationally recognised art and cultural institutions in Swiss regions other than their own or abroad, and the project in question has a transregional appeal.
  • The artistic potential of an emerging art practitioner involved is exceptional in terms of a national or international career.
  • The project makes a significant contribution to the development of Swiss artistic and cultural production and its dissemination.
  • The project is of significant importance for the exchange between Switzerland’s various linguistic regions.

Assessment of content and quality

Within the framework of the available funds, Pro Helvetia prioritises projects that most comprehensively meet the funding criteria. The Foundation assesses whether

  • the project demonstrates high degree of independence and professional competence as well as social and thematic relevance
  • the project is implemented according to professional standards
  • the costs are commensurate with the expected impact
  • a lasting impact can be expected

Furthermore, the Foundation attaches great importance to the following aspects:

  • The project has an appropriate commitment to diversity.
  • Resources are used in an ecologically responsible manner and work and production are planned sustainably.


Pro Helvetia is unable to consider funding requests if

  • the same part of the submitted project is already received funding from other federal bodies (e.g. Federal Office of Culture, Presence Switzerland, Swiss National Science Foundation, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation)
  • the project is part of a school or university curriculum/basic training or continuing education programme (including dissertations, diploma projects, university scholarships, etc.)
  • funding is intended to cover infrastructure and equipment costs, as well as the costs of operating cultural facilities, archives and collections
  • the project does not depend on funding from Pro Helvetia

Status: January 2024