The Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival (SMHAF) is seeking proposals for mental health themed creative provocations, of up to one hour in length, to take place as part of a day-long arts and activism programme in Glasgow on Wednesday 4 October 2023.

We can provide a budget of £1000 for each one; the application deadline is Friday 30 June 2023 at 6pm.

About the Festival

SMHAF is an annual programme to support the arts, explore how engagement in the arts can help prevent mental ill health and challenge preconceived ideas about mental health.

Led by the Mental Health Foundation with support from partner organisations across Scotland, SMHAF is the biggest festival of its kind in the world, and its ground-breaking model, combining high artistic quality with strong grassroots support, community engagement and social activism, has been imitated across Europe.

This year’s festival will take place from 4-22 October. Our 2023 festival theme, chosen in consultation with regional co-ordinators across Scotland, is 'Revolution'.

The choice reflects both the Mental Health Foundation’s new strategic focus on tackling social inequality and, in the midst of turbulent political and economic times, a desire by many of our festival partners to be more direct in addressing the impact of economic barriers and social inequality on mental health.

We plan to do this through a series of interconnected events, including Manifesto, a one-day, agenda-setting arts and mental health event at the CCA in Glasgow on Wednesday 4 October.

About Manifesto

Manifesto will combine performance, film screenings, workshops, discussions and a celebratory closing live music event. We plan to document and present this day of activity online as a collective mental health arts manifesto, to which we hope to continue adding more material from other events across Scotland as the festival progresses.

At the heart of Manifesto will be three specially commissioned creative provocations, each one up to one hour in length. The creative provocations can take the form of live performances, discussions, film screenings, or a combination of all of the above.

They should challenge established ways of thinking and have insightful things to say about mental health and our festival theme of ‘Revolution’.

Application Details

Each creative provocation will be given a budget of £1000 to cover fees and materials costs. The figure does not include venue costs, standard technical support, marketing and access support, all of which will be covered by SMHAF.

You can apply as an individual or as a group / organisation, but all freelance contributors should be paid according to recognised industry rates.

To apply, please send us a short proposal. This should include:

  • Up to six paragraphs if in writing; we can also accept proposals by audio or video
  • A budget
  • Examples of previous work
  • Please also complete our Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form

Please email applications to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the subject line 'SMHAF Creative Provocations - Your Name'. The deadline for applications is Friday 30 June 2023.

SMHAF’s Manifesto programme is supported by Creative Scotland.