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where senior artists are considered. connected. community.

Call for Visual Artists: Storytelling and Palliative Care Project

Radical Connections is looking for a Visual Artist to participate in a project which brings the art of storytelling both verbal and visual to the context of palliative care. Radical Connections links artists of professional calibre with people in care in hospitals, long-term care homes, and those aging in place . We are looking for an artist keen to work in a cross-sectoral context bridging the arts and health, reaching members of the community who are often deprived of the meaning making benefits of the arts. 

Over the next year Ottawa storyteller Kim Kilpatrick will be working with patients, family members, and healthcare providers at the Bruyère Palliative Care Unit to craft 50-word stories. Storytelling will be used in the palliative care unit to reflect and share lived experience and to explore difficult emotions. Participants will recall meaningful events from their past, which have made them who they are, and develop narratives delving into challenging current life events, relationships, and the care environment. 

The visual artist will create a work or series of works based on the content of the participants’ stories. The art works may take the form of a portable mural, illustrations similar to those in graphic novels, a fibres based art-work such a quilt or wall hanging, or assemblages using objects supplied by the storytellers. We are also open to other approaches and mediums. The artist should have experience working in the community with vulnerable populations, preferably seniors and collaborating with other artists.

The artwork would be displayed at the Ottawa Art Gallery, Bruyère, and at an academic or medical conference in 2024. The artist will be paid a CARFAC fee equal to the amount given to artists for exhibitions.

If you are interested in this opportunity, please send us:
-A letter of interest explaining why you would like to participate in this project and what your artistic approach to the project would be. 500 words

-An artist bio detailing your medium, thematic interests, and your experience working in community and/or healthcare contexts and collaborating with other artists. 500 words

-An Artist Resume 2-3 pages

-A link to your artist website or another site with images of your work.

Submit your application or send questions to:

Deadline to Submit Feb 24

Background: Storytelling initiatives have validated feelings of suffering for family caregivers and promoted self-care for health care providers by processing challenging feelings. There is limited research exploring the feasibility of ongoing storytelling programs in PCU settings and best practices using these initiatives. With the help of an interdisciplinary team, this storytelling initiative draws on artistic expertise from our community to support patients, family caregivers, and health care providers on the Bruyère Palliative Care Unit.