Call for Submissions: Nocturne 2023


Founded in 2008, Nocturne: Art at Night Festival (Nocturne) is a free, independent, contemporary art festival in Kjipuktuk (Halifax). Annually, Nocturne brings 60,000+ people to the streets of Halifax and Dartmouth to experience art and celebrate the visual arts scene in Mi’kma’ki (Nova Scotia). This year Nocturne will take place from October 12-15, 2023.

Nocturne is currently seeking artists to participate in our 2023 programming through the development of a temporary public artworks that will be exhibited during our signature night-time art experience taking place on Saturday, October 14.

Artists, collectives, creatives, community groups, galleries, and curators are welcome to apply.

For successful applicants, Nocturne pays equitable CARFAC 2023 Fees, material/production expenses, including accessibility costs, artist care, and travel.

In addition to our general Call for Submissions, Nocturne is also inviting submissions for Propeller Brewing x Nocturne, and Expressions of Interest for our 2024 Festival Curator. Each call for proposal has its specific requirements and timelines. Artists are permitted to submit to multiple calls that they are eligible for.

ATTEND AN INFO SESSION: Nocturne will host an info session via Zoom to help you prepare your application. Attendance is not mandatory. The info session will also be recorded and made available on our website.
March 15, 2023: 6:00 – 7:30 PM (ADT)

In addition to the google form application, Nocturne will also accept proposals via phone, video, or audio file as needed by the applicant. Please get in touch via email at: to arrange this submission type. This process will take approximately 1 hour, and it will include a recorded interview that takes place between an organizer or committee member and the applicant, where we will go through each section of the application together. The conversation will be recorded and shared with the jury via video or transcription.

DEADLINE TO APPLY: April 17, 2023, midnight (ADT)

Artists working in any discipline are encouraged to apply. Various types of projects will taking place as part of the festival, including:

  • Installations/ “static” projects – They must be open from 6 PM-Midnight on Saturday, October 14. This also means artists should plan for the various weather conditions that could be a factor.
  • Events/Performances – There must be at least one taking place on Saturday, October 14, but additional performances may be considered for other times during the festival schedule.
  • Workshops/Demonstrations/Artist talks – These will be scheduled on Friday, October 13. Artists can include in their application if they are interested in offering an artist talk, but it is not mandatory or guaranteed.

Artists are not required to respond to a specific theme.

Nocturne’s Core Values:

  • We encourage proposals that reflect Nocturne’s core values as an independent, non-commercial, and contemporary art festival.
  • We encourage emerging artists, creatives, arts workers, and makers to apply.
  • We aim to support efforts that are exploratory, challenging, and critical in nature.

Encouraging Creatives and Artists:

  • We encourage applicants to propose new work as well as projects that have been started or completed elsewhere.
  • We encourage artists in all mediums to apply.
  • We seek to view applicants from a lens of equity and aim to create space for equal opportunities.
  • We encourage proposals for interactive and engaging installations.

Commitment to Barrier-Free Festival:

  • We are committed to organizing a barrier-free festival and do our best to ensure the venues and projects at Nocturne reflect those commitments.


  • Nocturne is proud to pay successful applicants an equitable CARFAC 2023 Fee Schedule, for material/production, accessibility, and artist care.
  • Artists are encouraged to consider various costs in their budget and should use the budget template provided.
  • The Nocturne Selection Committee reserves the right to ask questions about the submitted budget, provide additional funding, or suggest a different contribution amount.


  • We invite applicants to consider accessibility in their project budget. Examples of eligible costs in this category include: sign language interpretation, personal care attendant or support worker, a transcriber or specialized editor, personal project coordinator or assistant, a guide or visual describer, converting material into accessible formats, rental of specialized equipment needed for personal access or support, additional signage to make public engagement more accessible/inclusive.

Artist Support Network:

  • To better assist early career artists during the creation and presentation of their public projects, Nocturne will support consultations, mentorships, and collaborations with Nocturne alumni and public art/production adjacent professionals.


  • March 1: Call for submissions opens
  • March 15: Info session REGISTER HERE
  • April 15: Call for submissions close
  • May 15: Successful applicants contacted
  • October 12-15: Nocturne

Applicants will be informed of any adjustments to the timeline.

Application assistance is available for anyone who faces barriers to completing an online application or any part of our application process. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.

Melany Nugent-Noble
Executive Director

Morgan Bath
Director of Artist Care & Support

Image credits and descriptions:
1) Blooming Ludus, presented by BAGEL+BALLOON (Francine Dulong and Kai Oliver), ‘Moonlight Yoga for Human Plants’ October 13-14, 2022, at Queens Marquee for Nocturne Halfiax. In the foreground, many indistinguishable people holding small lights are in motion, moving upon a static background at the Halifax Waterfront.

2) ‘Namesake’ by Continuum Collective with support from Wren Tian-Morris, Carmel Farahbakhsh, Francesca Ekwuyasi & Darcie Bernhardt, Roger’s Square, Nocturne Halifax, October 15, 2022. Several large LED screens are suspended between large buildings.

3) ‘How To Be a Vine For the Future’ by Steph Rybczyn & Jessie Olson, Nocturne Halifax, October 15, 2022 at the Halifax Waterfront. In the foreground is a large archway made up of fabrics, ornaments and greenery that people are walking throug. In the background is the bay and city lights.

4) duglessss, ‘so lucky so strange so persistent’ at Casino Nova Scotia (Tower), Nocturne Halifax, October 15, 2022. In the foreground are two artists, In the background is green light, fog and city lights through large windows.

Photos by Kylee Nunn.