Video, film & new media

Fill your boots: Dr. Martens gives £60,000 for new video commissions at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London

Grants will be given to artists to create moving image works to premiere at the ICA's Image Behaviour 2021 forum

footwear brand Dr Martens has teamed up with the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London

The popular footwear brand Dr. Martens—the shoe of choice for punk rockers and students worldwide—has teamed up with the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London (ICA) on an initiative supporting film and moving image works.

Productions grants worth £60,000 will be awarded for new commissions due to be shown at Image Behaviour 2021, the ICA’s annual moving image forum held over five days in the ICA Theatre later this year. The selected works will also be shown on Dr. Martens’ digital platforms and on the ICA’s online platform, Cinema 3. The ICA remains closed as a result of current coronavirus restrictions.

Lexachast by Amnesia Scanner, Bill Kouligas and Harmvanden Dorpel on show during Image Behaviour in 2019 at the ICA, London Photo: Christa Holka

With sponsorship from Dr. Martens, the ICA is providing a production grant of £30,000 and six grants of £5,000, supplemented with production support and mentoring. Artists are invited to submit their proposals through the Image Behaviour open call (17 February-30 March); an international jury will make the winning selection with the successful applicants announced around May.

Steven Cairns, curator of Artists’ Film and Moving Image at the ICA, says in a statement: “Dr. Martens’ serious commitment to the ICA’s Image Behaviour means that we are able to conceive an even more impactful programme with substantially more new commissions.” Image Behaviour replaced the ICA Artists’ Film Biennial which featured works in 2016 by artists such as Ahmet Öğüt, Charlotte Prodger, Martine Syms and Ming Wong.

According to City AM newspaper, Dr. Martens sells more than 11 million pairs of shoes annually in more than 60 countries, reaping £672m revenue in the last financial year (ending 31 March 2020).