Call for Artists: INsiders Artist Project, The STEPS Initiative

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We may be physically distanced, but our desire to create, share and learn brings us together.

In response to our current public health crisis and with the goal of supporting artists, connecting communities and exploring public space during this uncertain time, STEPS is excited to launch the INsiders Artist Project.

  • Do you have a public-facing space in your home, garden, balcony or courtyard that could be the site of a creative intervention, installation or public artwork?
  • Do you have an idea to build community, share creative ideas or connect with one another through art?
  • Are you interested in creating work made from materials you have in your home, exploring DIY, upcycling or found object art?
  • Are you interested in sharing your artistic process virtually? Providing insights into your practice or creative process?

The goal of INsiders is to:

  • create paid production opportunities for artists interested in developing new work that explores the boundaries of private and public space, as well as our connection to each other;
  • inspire each other through innovative approaches, interactive components, experimentation, new materials, and techniques;
  • amplify the amazing creativity of Canadian artists with new audiences;
  • build new networks connecting artists, arts workers, and community members across Canada to support one another through this difficult time and beyond.

How to apply – it’s super easy!
Fill out our online submission form here by Friday, April 24th, 2020 at 4pm EST where you will respond to the following questions:

  • What is your project idea and how will it connect with the outside world?
  • Where do you live? Who is your intended audience?
  • Who is involved in making the work? Are you working alone or with your family, partner or roommate?
  • What materials are you using? Are there any materials you are missing in order to bring your ideas to life?
  • When do you plan to create your INsiders artwork? Please note, all projects must be completed by June 1, 2020.
  • What materials would you need to get or what support would you need from STEPS to meet this deadline?
  • What is your social handle? What platforms do you most frequently use?
  • Attach up to three (3) images of recent work, naming each image file as follows; Last name, First name – Image Number, .jpg only max 1024px x 768px

The STEPS program team will review submissions the week of April 27th, 2020 and select up to five (5) INsiders Artist Projects to support with a $500 honourarium. We will also do our best to support selected projects with any technical advice, outstanding materials or brainstorming that you may need to bring your INsider idea to life!

What happens if you’re selected?

  • STEPS will notify successful artists by the end of day on Friday, May 1st.
  • Video calls will be arranged for the week of May 4th to chat further about the project and identify whether there are any supports that you need from STEPS.
  • You agree to document through both photo and/or live video, your process on social media, tagging @stepsinitiaitve and #stepsinsiders on each post related to INsiders Artist Project, crediting the support of STEPS.
  • You agree to complete the proposed project on or before Monday, June 1, 2020, providing STEPS with a minimum of three (3) images and one (1) short video to share through social.
  • You receive a $500 honourarium for your amazing INsiders Artist Project!

Questions? Please feel free to reach out to Program Coordinator, Renee Castonguay at renee@stepsinitiative.com by April 22th, 2020 at 4pm EST and we’ll be happy to respond. We look forward to hearing from you! Be safe and stay healthy.


About STEPS
The STEPS Initiative is a Canadian-based public art organization that develops one-of-a-kind art initiatives and engagement strategies that transform public spaces. We are responsible for Canada’s largest and most community-engaged public art initiatives.

Our record breaking portfolio includes over 100 complex projects executed within scope and budget.

Together with our partners, we transform urban areas into vibrant public spaces, helping artists, community organizations, BIAs, and developers push creative and technical boundaries – breathing new artistic energy into our public spaces.

For more information on STEPS or to get in touch, visit stepsinitiative.com or follow us on IG, FB or Linkedin.

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