Arts, Culture & Heritage

Artists' Opportunities

If you are an artist living – or working primarily – in Richmond,
this page is for you

Richmond is home to hundreds of artists and artisans as well as about 60 arts organizations whose mandates and activities are as varied as populations they serve. Throughout the year, the City’s Cultural Development Manager sends emails to members of the Richmond Artists Directory, announcing artist calls, professional development workshops, promotional opportunities and more. If you would like to receive these emails, please register online. (You can learn more about the Richmond Artists Directory in the listing below.)

The following programs occur annually or year-round. This list also includes special one-off programs and opportunities as they arise. As well, the City of Richmond Public Art Program invites artists to participate in call to artist opportunities as they arise. Please visit the Call to Artists page to view current listings.

Branscombe House Artist Residency
Branscombe House Artist Residency takes place in the recently restored Edwardian style house located in the residential area of historic Steveston. Currently in its inaugural year, the 11-month residency program is an opportunity for artists with a community-engaged practice to create new work in exchange for 100% subsidized two-bedroom upstairs suite. During the residency, artists establish a presence in the community, spending time developing a body of work and engaging the public in programming which may include workshops, exhibitions, demos and legacy projects on the Branscombe site, community centres, schools and events/festivals.

Details about the residency can be found on the Branscombe Artist Residency
page.For further information regarding the Artist-in-Residence program, please contact Katie Varney, Manager, Cultural Development at Katie.Varney@richmond.ca 604-247-4941.

Art at Work: Professional Development Workshop Series for Artists
ART AT WORK is a series of workshops and events designed to provide artists with the knowledge and skills required for pursuing a professional arts practice in the fields of public art, visual art and community arts.

The workshops and events aim to:
• provide artists with practical, inspiring and career enhancing programming;
• support the growth and development of the arts and culture sector in Richmond; and
• encourage networking and sharing within the arts and culture community.

Workshops and events for 2016 have now concluded. Please check back regularly or sign up to receive email news updates for other upcoming professional development artist opportunities.

Community Art Exhibitions
As part of the City of Richmond’s Arts Strategy, Arts Services is committed to providing exhibition opportunities for local artists.   Several City facilities have joined together to present exhibition opportunities.  Selected artists may be exhibited in either one or several of the facilities in any given year.   Art works may include paintings, drawings, photographs, quilts or other textile pieces and can be displayed on framed paper or on canvas.   Some facilities may be able to accommodate three dimensional art such as pottery.  Though priority is given to Richmond artists, all local artists from the Lower Mainland are welcome to submit proposals.

During the summer, a call-to-artists is announced. After the deadline, generally in the end of July, representatives from each facility meet and select artists for the upcoming year.  It is strongly encouraged that artists submit their applications during this period by sending applications to the designated address.  However, applications are accepted throughout the year by contacting the individual facility representatives listed below. Application requirements and deadline information can be found by opening the PDF file in this section. 

Currently, the following facilities participate in the Community Art Exhibition circuit:

Richmond Cultural Centre:  Camyar Chaichian, Arts Coordinator, cchaichian@richmond.ca
Gateway Theatre: Lester Chua, Rentals and Events Coordinator, events@gatewaytheatre.com
Thompson Community Centre: thompsonartcommittee@gmail.com
City Centre Community Centre: Donna Vines, Community Facilities Coordinator, dvines@richmond.ca
South Arm Community Centre Winnie Wong, Community Development Coordinator, wwong2@richmond.ca

PDF Document Community Art Exhibitions Submission Form

Richmond Arts Awards
2016 Winners Announced
The annual Richmond Arts Awards program recognizes the artistic achievements and contributions to the arts community by City residents, artists, educators, organizations and business leaders. Awards are presented in six categories: Business and the Arts, Arts Volunteerism, Cultural Leadership, Artistic Innovation, Arts Education and Youth Arts. Three finalists in each of the six categories will be named in April and winners announced at a ceremony in May.
For further information regarding the Richmond Arts Awards, please contact Katie Varney, Manager, Community Cultural Development at Katie.Varney@richmond.ca, 604-247-4941.

Culture Days
September 30, October 1 & 2, 2016
PDF Document Play Your Part
Culture Days is an annual collaborative pan-Canadian volunteer movement to raise awareness, accessibility, participation and engagement in the arts featuring free, hands-on, interactive activities that invite the public to participate “behind the scenes,” to discover the world of artists, creators, historians, architects, curators, and designers in their community. 

Culture Days is the largest public participation campaign ever undertaken by the arts and cultural community in this country. Annually, creative people and organizations in nearly 850 communities register some 7000 events.  With 100+ free cultural opportunities on offer in 2015, Richmond was again one of the top cities in Canada for the number of activities on offer [2015 Program]. 

In its seventh year, Richmond's artists, cultural organizations and creative businesses are again invited to participate by hosting an activity anytime on September 30, October 1& 2, 2016. The City of Richmond will support local activity organizers by coordinating a local marketing campaign for Richmond events with print advertising in Richmond newspapers, posters, brochure, media relations and much more. Please be sure to register your event at www.culturedays.ca so that we can ensure your event is included in the local promotion.

Hosting an activity during the Culture Days weekend is a wonderful way to engage with community by offering a ‘hands-on’ activity, lecture, demo or ‘behind-the-scenes’ experience. Use the opportunity to promote your regular activities, nurture existing audiences and develop new supporters. For creative businesses, it can be a way to attract new clients and customers by offering a lecture, creative demo or workshop. Any arts or cultural activity – professional, commercial, community, amateur, educational, etc. – can take part with the following criteria:

  • Your activity is FREE to the public and participatory
  • The activity takes place during the Culture Days weekend, September 30, October 1 & 2, 2016.
  • The activity is registered at www.culturedays.ca
  • You secure a venue, plan and assume all costs to deliver the activity.
  • You promote your activity through your own regular channels, with the support of the promotional program coordinated by the City of Richmond in partnership with Tourism Richmond and the Richmond Review.

For more information, download the  PDF Document Play Your Part brochure or contact Katie Varney, Manager of Cultural Development at Katie.Varney@richmond.ca or 604-247-4941.

Call to Artists
The City of Richmond Public Art Program invites artists to participate in call to artist opportunities in Richmond. Please visit the Call to Artists page to view current listings.

Arts & Culture Grant Program 
Developed in 2011 to strengthen the infrastructure of arts and culture organizations, invest in arts opportunities, show support for the careers of local artists and support a wide range of artistic and cultural activity, the Arts & Culture Grants Program offers two types of grants: Project Assistance and Operating Assistance to registered non-profit arts and culture organizations.

For more information on the funding criteria and application process please visit the
City Grant Program page. 

The deadline for 2016 Arts & Culture grant applications was November 20, 2015. Please check back in October for the 2017 deadline.

For further information regarding the Arts and Culture Grant Program, please contact Katie Varney, Manager, Community Cultural Development  Katie.Varney@richmond.ca, at 604-247-4941.

Writer-in-Residence Program
Fall 2016
The City of Richmond is pleased to announce that Karen X. Tulchinsky will be the City of Richmond’s fifth writer-in-residence. Karen, an award-winning novelist and acclaimed screenwriter and director, will provide innovative workshops and one-on-one consultations with readers and writers across generations and cultures.
The Writer-in-Residence Program works with Richmond Library’s Brighouse Branch, Minoru Place Activity Centre and Arts Centre to deliver hands-on programming that program helps local residents foster a greater appreciation for Canadian writing. This full-time residency position runs from September 30 to November 30. Authors spend 25% of their time on public programs and projects, leaving 74% of the work week available for creative writing. Past writers include: Caroline Adderson, Nancy Lee, Mark Leiren-Young and Sally Stubbs.

For further information regarding the Writer-in-Residence program, please contact Katie Varney, Manager, Community Cultural Development, Katie.Varney@richmond.ca,
604-247-4941.

Meet Karen X. Tulchinsky: Writer-in-Residence Launch
Friday, September 30, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Richmond Cultural Centre Performance Hall. Free.


Learn about Karen’s writing career as a novelist and film/television writer and the wide range of free, public programs that she will present during her two month residency in the Minoru precinct. The launch event is part of Culture Days and will be followed by a short reception.

To RSVP, call 604-276-4300 or go to richmond.ca/register and quote # 1634888.

Richmond Artists Directory - Calling all Artists
Please take a few minutes to fill in our Survey. The data collected will be used to provide statistics on the number and types of artists in our midst, which will be helpful in future proposals and planning. In addition, it will provide a resource in case of opportunities for the City to hire local artists. If you give permission, the contact information will also be used to inform you about new artist-focused programs, events and opportunities as they are announced.

The information provided will not be shared, nor used for any non-official City of Richmond business or communication.