Call for applications

2024 Bursary Call: Art History Applicants

South African National Research Foundation, South Africa
Deadline: 09 June 2023

Viwe Madinda, Is'hlwele uGokra IV, 2019. Photo by Luke Kaplan, courtesy of Viwe Madinda.

Viwe Madinda, Is'hlwele uGokra IV, 2019. Photo by Luke Kaplan, courtesy of Viwe Madinda.

The South African National Research Foundation (NRF) SARChI Chair programme in Geopolitics and the Arts of Africa is offering grant holder-linked PhD, MA and Honours bursaries for 2024.

Geopolitics and the Arts of Africa is part of the Arts of Africa and Global Souths postgraduate research programme based in the Fine Art Department at Rhodes University in Makhanda, South Africa. It is run by Professor Ruth Simbao, and focuses on perspectives from the African continent and other global south contexts. Associate Professor Stephen Fọlárànmí and a number of Research Associates and Postdoctoral Fellows are also part of the research team.

A limited number of prospective students will be shortlisted for entrance into the programme and for bursaries. Those shortlisted must meet all NRF bursary requirements, and must demonstrate that their proposed research is relevant to the Arts of Africa and Global Souths programme and the 2024 research themes.

Research themes for 2024 are:
1. Art, Activism and Social Justice
2. Grounding, Reducing, Decelerating: Art, Environments and Materialities
3. Rising Souths: Reorienting Arts Futures
4. Epistemological Intimacies: Ways of Practising as Ways of Knowing

Click here for further information on these themes.

Bursary Criteria:
1. Prior degree in Art History (cognate disciplines might be considered if there is sufficient experience in visual literacy and analysis)
2. Minimum academic requirement is 65%
3. Entry age requirement is 32, 30 and 28 years or younger for PhD, MA and Honours respectively
4. Full-time study only, and students may not be in salaried employment
5. Must be based in Makhanda, South Africa for the duration of the bursary (Honours 1 year, Masters 2 years, PhD 3 years).
6. Must meet requirements to be accepted into the Fine Art Department and Rhodes University

Deadline for Expression of Interest is Friday 9 June 2023

Please email Professor Ruth Simbao ( by the 9th of June if you are interested in applying.

Email subject line: NRF Bursary Expression of Interest.

For Expression of Interest, include the following details:
1. A research proposal that includes your research interest; alignment with research programme and themes; methodology; and select bibliography (2 pages for Honours, 4-6 pages for Masters, and 6-10 pages for PhD).
2. Details about your previous degree including institution, coursework (if relevant), thesis title (if relevant), and grades. (If shortlisted, official transcripts will be needed).
3. Copy of ID/passport


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