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Flag It Up in Partnership with Homotopia

dot-art and Bruntwood are delighted to unfurl the winning design from our Climate Crisis theme AND announce the launch of the fourth open call for the Flag It Up project.

For this round we have teamed up with Homotopia, the UK’s longest running LGBTQIA+ arts and culture festival, to explore the issues facing this community in our city today. We are asking Liverpool City Region artists to design a flag to shine a spotlight on these themes.

Flag It Up is a partnership between dot-art and Bruntwood to create an exciting new platform for public art in Liverpool – using flags! As well as seeing their flag design brought to life, the selected artists receive a fee of £500 and a one year artist membership with dot-art.

The flagpole is mounted on the Grade II listed Exchange Court, 1 Dale Street, built in 1858 for the Liverpool and London Insurance Company and currently home to RBS. The large central flagpole, which is mounted above the main entrance and rises to the second floor, was unused for many years. This project aims to bring it back to life with a newly commissioned contemporary artwork flown as a flag, every 6 months.

In September 2020, we launched an open call for artists based in the Liverpool City Region to design the first flag, which was in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. Sumuyya Khader was selected and her work, entitled “Black, We Exist” was displayed for 6 months. Our second call, in response to International Women’s Day addressed issues around gender equality. Artist Charlotte Southall was commissioned and her work “Reach” flew for 6 months.

Our third call – to coincide with COP26 in Glasgow – was exploring issues of climate change and was won by artist Tommy Graham, whose flag is now on display. The work, entitled “Caution, High Tide” is a timely, powerful and thought-provoking statement.

Tommy says:

“I have created a simple, stark and iconic hazard yellow flag denoting the high water mark, suspended 40+ft above street level.

“I often use fatalist humour to highlight serious issues, which is exactly what I’m aiming for here. I invite the audience to imagine a near future in which everything below the flag is completely submerged in water.”

For our fourth open call, we are asking artists to explore issues faced by the LGBTQIA community. Liverpool has a long history of being an open and welcoming city, which we would love to see celebrated, yet it has faced many challenges and difficulties, such as the recent homophobic and transphobic attacks we sadly saw in the city, which you may choose to reflect as well. We would particularly like to hear from artists from communities marginalised within the LGBTQIA community or excluded from mainstream settings, and hear a range of new voices.

Instructions for Artists

  • To apply, please complete the submission form here:
  • You will NOT need to produce a full design, just samples of previous work and any ideas you have of how you would approach the commission.
  • The selected artist will need to produce a completely new and original piece of work.
  • The final artwork will need to be suitable for reproduction on a 10×6 foot / 305x182cm flag and have visual impact from ground level.
  • The original art work and copyright will remain the property of the artist.

The deadline for submissions is 5pm Friday 19th August

Images can be found here