Arts AccessAbility Network Manitoba

Including artists and audiences with disabilities into all facets of the arts community.

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Call for Artists: CreateSpace Public Art Forum

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Call for Artists: CreateSpace Public Art Forum

December 12, 2021

Are you, or an artist you know, interested in gaining experience, building networks and professional skills needed to launch or expand a public art practice?


STEPS Public Art believes public art has the ability to challenge the systemic inequities that exist in public space. In support of this important work, we facilitate programs that foster inclusive public art practices, build the capacity of underrepresented artists, and demonstrate how public art can help reimagine equitably designed cities.


We are thrilled to launch CreateSpace Public Art Forum, a digital forum that will virtually convene 50 participants who identify as Black, Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit and Métis), racialized, rural and/or youth with disabilities and between the ages of 18-25. CreateSpace Public Art Forum runs from January 10-30, 2022. This forum will foster connections, build understanding across geographies and cultures, as well as provide emerging equity-seeking artists with the skills, relationships and support needed to develop public art practices.


CreateSpace Public Art Forum will see the presentation of 10 pre-recorded talks/workshops created by professional public artists and cultural workers. These talks/workshops will be available in both video (YouTube) and audio (Podcast) versions for accessibility, with ASL translations. Each talk/workshop will be themed around various ideas and concepts of public art practices. Participants will engage with these talks/workshops and create an artistic response, with feedback from peers, as well as one on one feedback from established public artists. Their participation will culminate in a profile on the STEPS Public Art website with a virtual presentation of their work.


CreateSpace Public Art Forum participating artists will gain:

Skills: A variety of virtual workshops, tailored to encourage participants to grow their understanding of Community, Identity, Accessibility, and Land, and apply these understandings to their public art practice;

Relationships: Opportunities to connect with/access mentorship from established public art practitioners across the country, as well as build relationships for peer mentorship within a closed cohort Slack channel;

Practical Experience: Artists in the program will have the opportunity to create an artistic response to the themes that resonate with them within the talks/workshops, with feedback from peers to strengthen their work. They will also have ongoing access to a Public Art toolkit tailored to resource sharing for early-career artists;

Public Audiences: Artists will have their bio, artist statement, as well as artistic work created for this program featured on the STEPS Public Art website. Artists and events will also be profiled throughout the program;

Financial Support: Artists will each receive an honorarium of $600 CAD for their full participation in the program;

Proof of Participation: A Certificate of Completion.


Up to 50 artists will be selected for this opportunity. This opportunity is open to those who:


  • identity as early-career Canadian-based visual and/or media artists interested in building or growing their public art practice;
  • identify as Black, Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit and Métis), racialized, rural, and/or youth with disabilities;
  • are between the ages of 18-25;
  • are a Canadian citizen, or Permanent Resident.


Program components will be offered primarily in English, with translation and ASL services available as needed to support participation of a diverse community of artists. Interested applicants must submit their expressions of interest by Sunday, December 12, 2021 at 11:59 PM PST. Those living outside of the Pacific time zone are encouraged to use a timezone converter to ensure your application is received by the deadline.


As part of their participation in the CreateSpace Public Art Forum, participants are expected to:

  • View and engage with at least 3 of the 10 Podcast/Video lectures (15-20 minutes each). These lectures will be pre-recorded, and will be in audio or video formats, with ASL options for accessibility;
  • Create an artistic response (drawing, sculpture, photography, multimedia, text, etc) related to one or more of the talks/workshops. Participants are NOT expected to have plans for an artistic work at the time of their application;
  • Engage with peers work and provide feedback through the community Slack page, and through a final virtual participant gathering;
  • Attend a one-on-one studio visit with an established public artist to gather feedback on artistic work;
  • Respect the time and knowledge of CreateSpace Public Art Forum artists, fellow participating artists and STEPS staff, by committing to cultivate a safe, inclusive, supportive and respectful space for learning, exploration and growth.
  • Complete an evaluation survey about Forum experience for STEPS and program funders.

Key Program Dates 


Submission Deadline: Sunday December 12, 2021 at 11:59 PM PST
CreateSpace Forum programming: January 10-30, 2022


How to apply:


To apply, please click here to fill out the application form by Sunday, December 12, 2021 at 11:59pm PST. To access the application in French please visit here.


PLEASE NOTE: Applicants cannot save the form and return to complete it at a later time. We strongly recommend downloading the following form and saving your answers on a separate document prior to filling out the online form.


We encourage all applicants to visit the STEPS website prior to preparing this application to have a better understanding of the organization that will be facilitating this residency. Applicants who are Deaf, have a disability, or who need support applying for this opportunity are encouraged to contact Sanaa Humayun, Artist Programs Coordinator at or call 416.366.6565 ex. 2 at least two weeks before the submission deadline to allow STEPS to appropriately accommodate your needs and to discuss alternate formats for submitting your application.


Participants will be selected on a competitive basis by a review committee of public art practitioners from across Canada. Review committee members have been selected on the basis of their familiarity with a broad spectrum of public art practices, specialized expertise, fair-mindedness, and self and regional representation. The committee will assess submissions based on clarity of learning objectives, alignment with needs and forum supports; and merit of applicant’s arts practice.


December 12, 2021
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