Research Fellows

221A works with artists and designers as Research Fellows to conduct research over a period of 3 to 24 months. Each Research Fellow is supported by a stipend and organizational framework to lead new research on potential social, cultural or ecological infrastructure. Staff work alongside Fellows to resource and translate research into programs and operational plans towards infrastructure.

Under the Fellow’s direction, the resources and instruments wielded by the arts institution—human capacities, financial assets, communications platforms, and (relative) autonomy over space—will be mobilized to realize flexible and permanent projects that 221A refers to Infrastructures. The Fellow will be challenged to use the institution itself as a medium. What distinguishes the fellowship program is its dedication to supporting artists with generous subsistence funding so that their work can be realized with that most scarce of resources: time.

The Fellow’s extended tenure will allow them to build relationships with collaborators and audiences concurrently through public programming and through informal hours spent learning from the diverse communities the organization lives and works with. 221A sees this as an ‘institution of a new type’ as both an experiment in advancing artists’ self-determination, as well a vehicle best suited for producing more thoroughly-developed, engaging and sustainable artworks, for expanded publics and audiences. The Fellows’ Infrastructures open spaces for experimental modes of art production and reception.

We are in the process of reformatting our Fellowships program in anticipation of a new facility opening in 2023. To keep updated on any changes, please subscribe to our newsletter.

Zasha Colah:
The Scorched-Earthly

November 2020 - September 2021

Zasha Colah researches contemporary collective forms of cultural production and artistic imagination under prolonged militarized situations; and how acts of imagination become collective. She segues between at least two terrains: the region of Northeast India bordering Bangladesh, Myanmar/Burma and China, and the Pacific Northwest Coast of North America. These artificially segmented terrains coalesce in this research to perceive the intersections of law, artistic imagination, constitutions, and the infrastructure of disobedient, ungoverned terrains.

Christina Battle:
Imagining New Systems of Exchange

October 2020 - March 2021

Christina Battle is an Artist whose research and work consider the parameters of disaster – looking to it as action, as more than mere event, and instead as a framework operating within larger systems of power. Her Fellowship with 221A seeks to imagine beyond capitalist cycles of economic breakdown and towards new systems of exchange, drawing from strategies of spread observed in plants and fungi, as well as in online spaces.

Fellow Archive

Architects for Social Housing:
For a Socialist Architecture (Ask These Questions)

July 2019 - December 2019

Architects for Social Housing (ASH) is a Community Interest Company from London, England, that organizes working collectives for individual projects. Their unifying principle is that refurbishing and increasing the housing capacity on London’s council estates, rather than demolishing and redeveloping them as properties for market sale, is a more sustainable solution to the housing needs of London’s communities. 

T’uy’t’tanat-Cease Wyss:
x̱aw̓s shew̓áy̓ New Growth «新生林»

June 2018 – August 2019

T’uy’tanat Cease Wyss is a media artist and ethnobotanist. Her Fellowship with 221A will lead a transformation of Semi­-Public 半公開 at 271 Union Street, converting the site’s compacted road base gravel to a communal garden designed with permaculture systems and plants that are indigenous to the bioregion of the Pacific Northwest Coast and the unceded territories of the Squamish, Musqueam, Tsleil-Waututh, and Stó:lō Nations.

Jenn Jackson:
sum of the parts

March – July 2018

Throughout the spring season of 2018, 221A hosts sum of the parts, a curatorial research project by Jackson which brings together a selection of films, performances and installations by Deanna Bowen, Felix Kalmenson, Divya Mehra, Krista Belle Stewart and Casey Wei, who present compelling excavations of the past, by drawing from familial, historic, and archival sources—visualizing narratives of race and class, and their recognition within official records.

Amy Nugent:
The Sculpture Fund

March 2018 – August 2019

Amy Nugent is a Vancouver-based cultural worker and resource developer. As the former president of Artspeak’s board, she has been recognized with a 2016 Mayor’s Arts Award from the City of Vancouver. Her own research over the past five years has focused on the history and restitution of sculptors Frances Loring (1887–1968) and Florence Wyle (1881–1968), the current state of Canadian art collections and the limited acquisition funds to support them.

Juli Majer

January 2018 – May 2018

Juli Majer is a visual artist from Vancouver. Titled Science Fiction and the Other, Majer’s fellowship project will convene a series of public readings, studies, and screenings at Pollyanna 圖書館 Library.

William Dereume:
Comix for Community Solidarity

January 2018 – April 2019

William Dereume is a cartoonist from Vancouver. Through his fellowship with 221A, Dereume will develop a social infrastructure program that brings together artists, their institutions, and communities of struggle.

Yu Su

August 2017 – January, 2018

Kaifeng-born Yu Su comes from a classical piano background and works as a sound artist and music composer in Vancouver. Yu Su’s fellowship assembles artists, musicians, and researchers to develop a speculative sound archive at Pollyanna 圖書館 Library.

Josh Gabert-Doyon

August 2017 – January 2018

Josh Gabert-Doyon is a writer, photographer, and documentary radio producer. His fellowship assembles a provisional research collective—W.W.A.S.—to study the historic transformations of Vancouver’s storied Woodward’s building. Since September 2017, the collective (Brit Bachmann, Gabi Dao, Josh Gabert-Doyon, and Byron Peters) has occupied Pollyanna 圖書館 Library to plan and carry out an investigation into Woodward’s as an epicentre of local class struggle.