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Call for Artists 2020

2020 will be the fifth year for the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21’s Artist-in- Residence program. The goal of our six-month residency is to enable an artist to create new work that contributes to the Museum’s mandate while advancing their art practice. This year we are looking for a Mi’kmaw artist inspired by the 2020 North American Indigenous Games and the Games’ President, Tex Marshall’s statement, “The 2020 North American Indigenous Games is going to be about culture, sharing and opportunities. An opportunity for the youth and everyone to immerse themselves in their own culture and to share their culture with others.”

This competition is open to Artists working in any medium.

Sample project ideas:

  • A playwright, author or poet could research, write then deliver an original short work to museum visitors.
  • A visual artist may propose an ‘open studio’ project or a participatory project like those by previous artists-in-residence Kyle Jackson and Andrea Tsang Jackson.
  • A dancer, musician or singer may want to perform onsite during certain time periods and be featured on Canada Day and at Nocturne.
  • A filmmaker, multimedia or visual artist might use the experience of interacting with our visitors over the spring and early summer to develop a piece that can be shared in a public space and grow into a large scale installation for Nocturne.

All artists will be expected to spend 16 hours per week onsite interacting with our visiting public. The compensation for this six-month program is $15,000.00 including materials. This program does not include accommodations.

Prospective artists should demonstrate how their project will help share their culture with museum visitors. Please feel free to write with questions and/or to arrange a visit to the museum.

Ownership of the artwork will remain with the artist unless otherwise negotiated.

Apply to Artist in Residence Program


Application deadline March 13, 2020 for submission to our 2020 Residency Program
Selection of artist April 10, 2020
Review project plan and develop an implementation plan with staff April 2020
Project execution 16 hours onsite per week from May to October 2020


$15,000.00 (including supplies)

Criteria for Selection:

- Applicant demonstrates artistic excellence and professionalism. (30)
- Proposed program will help visitors connect to the ‘sharing culture’ theme of the residency and to participate in something enjoyable with their family. (50)
- Feasibility of the proposed program. (20)

Submission Requirements:

Please submit the following items by March 13, 2020. Late or incomplete submissions will not be considered.

  • 1) Cover page/Email including full contact information
  • 2) Email, CD, DVD or USB drive including:
    • a) Proposal: a description of your proposed project including requirements and a description of how the proposed project will engage our visitors
    • b) Brief project plan with a timeline and milestones
    • c) Estimated budget (note that past artists have found sponsors/donors for their supplies who we then credit in all promotion of the project)
    • d) Curriculum vitae
    • e) Work samples (five work samples, articles or reviews, whatever best conveys your work)

A short list of up to three artists may be interviewed prior to selection.

Send or email submissions to:

Carrie-Ann Smith
Vice-President, Audience Engagement
Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21
1055 Marginal Road
Halifax, NS B3H 4P7
D : 902.425.0071 T : 902.425.7770 ext. 225 F : 902.423.4045

Artist Katarina Marinic.

2019 - An Ocean of Change
Katarina Marinic

Katarina recently graduated with an MFA from NSCAD University in 2019. She has a BFA with a major in photography from NSCAD in 2017, and a diploma in Applied Photography from Sheridan College.

artist Shauna MacLeod

2018 - Refuge Canada
Shauna MacLeod

Shauna MacLeod is a NSCAD graduate who has been working as a studio potter since 2012. She is one of a handful of ceramic artists working with Nova Scotia red earthenware clay.

artist Andrea Tsang

Andrea Tsang Jackson

Andrea is an emerging textile artist who holds a Master’s Degree in Architecture from McGill University and a Master’s Degree in Arts in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Her work has been published in Flare, the Chronicle Herald, and The Coast.

man smiling holding a banner

2016 - To Those Still At Sea...
Kyle Jackson

Kyle Jackson is a multidisciplinary artist who works with paint and interactive sculpture. A graduate of NSCADU with a Degree in Painting, Kyle’s art practice is primarily spent creating and building work to charm and engage the world.