Ellipses [ ... ] Journal for Creative Research

Ellipses [...] is an online publication and peer reviewed platform for creative research realised in live, digital formats. For this issue of Ellipses [ ... ] we are proposing a call for creative work across a range of disciplines that responds to another call: open the gates.

2017 Call for Proposals, deadline: 19 April 2017

This call to open the gates speaks directly to the current state of crisis within higher education in South Africa - the nationwide #feesmustfall movement and calls for free, decolonised education, and the violent responses by university management, the state and police.

Open the gates refers to radical moments of historical change and tries to think through the representation of radical political shifts and spatial and temporal specificities of power and knowledge.

In his reflection on the making of the film October, Soviet film maker Sergei Eisenstein, talks of the mythology around the storming of the gates of the Winter Palace. In reality, the mass of people at the gates of the palace was too much to resist, and the guards had in fact simply opened the gates.

However, as Eisenstein explains, in the filmic representation it made for a stronger visual narrative to portray this moment as a storming of the gates. At the announcement of the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989, a Time Magazine article reports: 'As the hour drew near, they taunted East German border guards with cries of 'Tor Auf!' (open the gate). In the Freedom Charter, drafted during the struggle against Apartheid, it is claimed that: 'the doors of learning shall be opened to all'.

Open the gates thus suggests an actual and metaphorical opening of new possibilities, new assemblages and relations within sites of knowledge production. Here the place of the arts within the broader demands for measurable 'research' within university contexts are in question. Thus, it foregrounds questions of the creative act and the modes of representation necessary and possible in this space.

The call also opens the possibility for re-imagining affective and political communities. It embodies the push against accepted structures of feeling and the systemic violence of closure, connected to economic access and class privilege, intersectional with the race and gender. It is about the  possibilities of new and multiple languages, and the emergence of new modes of representation. It speaks to the potential to disrupt disciplinary boundaries within the arts, but also between arts and sciences, whether hard or social science. It is also a call to cross the divide between the physical, material space of production and digital modes of dissemination. ‘Open the gates’ also engages with how networked digital media invert the traditional logic of ‘gateways’. These gateways and the technologies and networks challenge us to creatively engage and negotiate the complexities of agency on digital platforms.

This is a call for existing works, new works or experimental projects that challenge disciplinary boundaries and forms of representation within the digital space. Existing work will be realised in a new form within the digital platform of the journal. Please note that the digital realisation of creative research is to be creative and therefore not a simple digital documentation of practice. The digital process is supported within the editorial process by a series of workshops and close communication with the development team.

Ellipses […] Journal Structure

Editorial Advisory Board:
Made up of members external to the WSOA, local and international experts in the area of creative research, its curation and documentation.

2017 / 2018 Edition Editors
Bettina Malcomess
Pervaiz Khan
Tegan Bristow (Digital)

Divisional Editorial Committee:
Made of representatives of each Division within the Wits School of the Arts:

  • Cultural Policy and Management: TBC
  • Digital Arts: Tegan Bristow
  • Drama for Life: TBC
  • Film & Television: Nduka Mntambo
  • Fine Arts: Bettina Malcomess
  • History of Art: Nontobeko Ntombela
  • Music: Cameron Harris
  • Theatre and Performance: Nondumiso Msimanga


Proposal Submission: 19 April 2017
Proposals can be for new or re-working of existing work.
Please use the submission form on the website: http://www.ellipses.org.za/

Please submit a copy of the submission form with any additional material to
submission@ellipses.org.za by the 19th of April 2017.

Any questions concerning proposal submission can be directed to the WSOA divisional editor (if you are a member of the WSOA), or directly to Editor Bettina.Malcomess@wits.ac.za

Proposed Deadlines:
Submission Proposal Deadline: 19th April 2017 (see proposal submission requirements).
Final Selection Announcement: 15th May 2017
Editorial Digital Workshops: June & July (exact dates TBC) - contributors to workshop with Digital Editor (Tegan Bristow) and Riaan Blignaut to explore how contribution’s can be presented digitally.
Editorial Development: August & September – contributors continue development and consultation with Editors.
Pre-Live Peer Review: October 2017 (exact date TBC), first blind peer review (see details of peer review process below).
Post-Live Review & Journal Launch: February & March 2017 (TBC)

Peer Review Process:
In gaining accreditation, the Journal must follow a peer review process. For the 2017 / 2018 edition we will be engaging in a two headed blind peer review process for accepted submissions:

  1. Pre-Live Peer Review: This peer review is an in process and in planning review of submissions before their digital manifestation in the journal. This will be conducted as a blind peer review. The review outcomes will be communicated privately to authors. Authors will be expected to respond to review in completing their creative research submissions.
  2. Post-Live Peer Review: This peer review will be a post finalisation review by commentators and experts in the field. This will be a public review on the submissions that will be published on the Journal site. The purpose of the Post-Live Review is to engage critical support for creative practice as research.
Bookmark and Share
Document Actions