We are seeking expressions of interest from artists to take part in ArtHouses: LOCALwifi this summer, and are commissioning up to 8 new artworks that can be delivered through our LOCALwifi network hosted by residents in Whitley Bay.

Deadline for applications: 27th June 2021
Project Dates: 20th August to 30 August 2021

Download information as pdf


What is LOCALwifi?

LOCALwifi is a network of wifi hotspots hosted in the homes of people living in Whitley Bay. Each of these hotspots will present a different artwork that people can access by going to the location and connecting to the LOCALwifi network from the street. A mobile app will guide audiences to the locations using a map. When people connect to the LOCALwifi network at each location, the app (or web-browser if they have not downloaded it) will display the artwork on the screen of their mobile device.

LOCALwifi’s digital-physical network is an opportunity to develop new encounters between artists, audiences and hosts in the community, and will build new relationships between artists and software developers. As we move out of lockdown, working in this way offers ways to safely make connections between artists and people living in Whitley Bay, and to share artworks with audiences during a 10 day-long event where the wifi network will be active. It is an opportunity for ArtHouses to explore new ways to engage with audiences in Whitley Bay and build on the success of our project INVERTED that presented new online works during last summer’s lockdown.


Where is LOCALwifi taking place?

The LOCALwifi network will be installed across pedestrianised streets in Whitley Bay, and in public spaces such as Victoria Avenue’s Community Garden and Station Masters Community Wildlife Garden (next to Whitley Bay Metro station). The streets are close to one another and the route is safe, accessible and easy for people to find and navigate. The app will clearly mark the locations of the wifi hotspots for people to locate.


What are we looking for?

We are seeking expressions of interest for up to 8 artist’s commissions that can engage with the context of LOCALwifi. We are looking for innovative ways of working that consider the location and the way audiences will interact with the event and artwork.

Thematically we would like projects to be led by the artists’ practices but anticipate that artists may consider connecting with the people, histories and streets of Whitley Bay, explore forms of digital/physical encounter, or themes of reconnection, linking into networks and ecosystems in their widest interpretation. We imagine the commissions will primarily take the form of screen-based artworks but welcome proposals that respond to the context and the potential hybridity that the project offers.

Artists will have the opportunity to work with experienced software developers to realise their ideas so experience of working digitally is not essential, but it is important to consider how audiences will encounter the work in your proposal.

The fee for each commissioned work will be up to £1200; as a guideline this will equate to approximately £850 for the artist and £350 for the software developer. This will be discussed in detail with the successful applicants and may vary depending on the scope of each commission.


Who can apply?

We want to hear from artists in all disciplines whose ideas can successfully engage audiences in this context. You do not need to have the programming skills to make your artwork function, but an understanding and consideration of the processes involved would be beneficial. We want to support artists from Whitley Bay and the North East but this opportunity is open to anyone. However, the budget for the project does not include any additional travel expenses and this will need to be considered within the proposal.


To apply:

Please send us your application as a single pdf document not exceeding 5mb in size, with your name as the file name. This should include:

If you have any difficulty with submitting your application by email or submitting material online please do contact us to arrange an alternative method.

Deadline for applications: 27th June, 2021 midnight
Artists will be informed of our decision by 6th July 2021
Event dates: 20-30 August 2021


Want to know more:

Have a look at the website to have a look at previous projects.
To get in touch and if you have any enquiries regarding ArtHouses or the open call opportunities please email:
or find us on social media at @arthouseswb


Who we are:

This year’s ArtHouses team are Sophie Buxton, Rob Smith and Dominic Smith, all practising artists based in Whitley Bay.

ArtHouses LOCALwifi is supported by Arts Council England National Lottery Funding, North Tyneside Council and Whitley Bay Big Local