Open Open: Deadline for submissions extended

The deadline for submissions to the Open | Open has been extended to 23:59 on Monday 22nd April.

CALL FOR ENTRIES: The Open | Open 2019

The Gibberd Gallery is inviting submissions from all comers who enjoy a challenge to show us how the town of Harlow, Essex, inspires creativity. This exhibition will mark the soft launch of a new and improved Sculpture Town map that will make it easy for users to get out and about and enjoy the sculpture collection, whether they have five minutes or five hours.

Submissions are accepted responding to the following brief:

Where a sculpture is sited in the town has a huge impact on how we perceive it. The site of each sculpture is just as important as the thing itself. As a post-war new town, Harlow was carefully planned from start to finish by landscape architect and master planner Sir Frederick Gibberd. The Open Open is about intervening in this environment and seeing it afresh.

Place something - anything - somewhere within the parameters of Harlow Town (postcodes CM17 to CM20) and photograph it. This is an opportunity to compose, juxtapose, intervene, disrupt, counterbalance, contrive, accentuate and generally explore relationships between things and their environment. When we say something we really do mean some ‘thing’: a readymade object, a drawing, a sculpture, a painting, model, performance, natural form, a print, a dialogue, an architectural form, a mineral, a vegetable (just not an animal.)

We particularly welcome submissions engaging with Harlow’s abundant public art collection of over 90 sculptures which are in equal measure hidden and in plain sight all around the town, or with its architecture of any period and purpose.

All submissions will be printed on photographic paper and exhibited in the Gibberd Gallery. Our independent panel of judges will award prizes generously sponsored by Astro Lighting at a special opening of the exhibition on Saturday 27th April. Selected images will also take over the gallery social media channels for one month during the exhibition.


What kind of camera you use to capture the dynamic between your thing and its environment is up to you, but the image you submit must be in digital form, no more than 3500 pixels on the longest length and with an image resolution between 240 and 300 pixels per inch (PPI). Your image file must be named using the following format: ‘surname_first name_openopen’. 

The exhibition is open to anyone aged 16 or over on the first day of the call for entries and while you don’t have to be from Harlow to enter, your image does have to be made here. People working under a pseudonym or collaboratively are eligible to apply, so long as they fulfil the above criteria.

**Please note: there will be a £3 submission fee for entrants over the age of 25. This is payable in person at the gallery. We hope also to have an online payment option up and running soon.**

To enter your image for Open Open, email it as an attachment to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 23:59 on Monday 22nd April 2019 along with a completed submissions form, available to downloadhere.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I print my own image and bring it in?

No. The image must be submitted as a digital file online as per the specifications in the brief. If you are using an analogue camera or physically altering your image in some way, you will need to scan your image and email it to us.

How many images can I submit to the Open Open? 

You can submit as many images as you like, but only one will be displayed in the exhibition

Can I use digital postproduction to create or edit my image?

You can use digital postproduction to create and/or edit your image. If you are editing an image somebody else has taken, you should as far as possible attain permission and provide details of whose it is.

Will I be able to keep the printed image once the exhibition is finished?

Any image not sold will be yours to keep after the exhibition closes on Saturday 20th July. You will be able to collect your image from the Gibberd Gallery until Thursday 27th September.

How can I pay my submissions fee?

 If you are under 25 years old, entry is free.  If you are over 25, you can pay your submissions fee at the Gibberd Gallery. 

What do you do with the money raised through submission fees?

Funds raised through submission fees are used to cover costs related to the exhibition and its programme of events. The Gibberd Gallery is run by Harlow Art Trust, and is a not-for-profit charity (charity number: 212559).

Why have you changed from the regular format of the Harlow Open this year?

The format of the exhibition has changed to mark the launch of a new and improved Harlow Sculpture Town map, which we hope will encourage people to get out and about in Harlow and see the sculptures and their surroundings in a new light. We also hope the change of challenge will encourage people who would not otherwise enter to get involved.

Will the regular format of the Harlow Open return in 2020?

The Open Open is an experiment and an exciting opportunity for both the Gibberd Gallery and its audiences to reflect on how it can best serve visitors and Harlow residents alike. All feedback we receive relating to the exhibition will be given due consideration when planning future programmes.

Twitter Feed

sculpturetownUK RT @HarlowCouncil: The award references the famous Henry Moore Family Group sculpture and Harlow’s blue and green landscapes #Harlow75 #t


Gibberd Gallery,
Civic Centre,
The Water Gardens,
Essex CM20 1WG


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