In response to the acute crisis in Lebanon, which has had a devastating impact on the Lebanese arts scene, the Institut français, the Association des Centres culturels de rencontre (ACCR) and the Institut français du Liban have joined forces to offer residencies in France to 100 Lebanese creative artists and arts professionals via an emergency programme entitled "NAFAS", jointly funded by the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs and the French Ministry of Culture.
"NAFAS", from the Arabic word نفس, means "breath". The NAFAS residencies are designed as a breathing space to allow Lebanese artists to pursue their creative work via cultural exchanges with France. The aim of the programme is to provide Lebanese creative artists, designers and arts professionals with support in the form of residencies of a specific duration in all parts of mainland France to enable them to develop a creative and/or research project in any sector of contemporary creative arts.
The programme was instigated in October 2020 following the explosion in Beirut on 4 August 2020. As of March 2021, it is being stepped up with the implementation of three schemes: a call for applications by the Institut français; a call for applications by the ACCR; and a special selection by the Institut français du Liban. In addition to these three residency schemes, specific residencies will be offered by associate partners such as the Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC) and the Cité internationale des arts.
The call for applications is closed. The results will be available around 15 June.