call for artists: Banff Clay Revival

Banff Clay Revival (link:
Dates: June 04 – July 06, 2018

The Banff Clay Revival residency acknowledges the resurgence of clay in contemporary art as a material of sculptural practice. In an age of digital technology where we are often detached from materiality and process, artists are returning to the tactile and elemental nature of clay.

Clay as a common material of domesticity, is an approachable and universal medium through which artists can communicate sophisticated intentions. This program will challenge artists to push the boundaries of form and tradition, collaborate, explore new building, firing, and glazing techniques, and redefine what the medium is capable of expressing.

What does the program offer?
Residencies offer the opportunity to create away from the constraints of everyday life. Participants are provided with a studio, accessible 24 hours a day, and access to our extensive shared facilities to further develop their production techniques. Knowledgeable staff are available to provide technical support and assistance.*

Throughout a period of five weeks, participants will benefit from a studio visit with a guest artist or curator, public lectures by visiting artists and guests, and demonstrations in a variety of ceramic production techniques.

Participants are surrounded by a community of artistic peers and have the opportunity to attend inspiring talks and performances by world-renowned artists, all within Banff Centre’s spectacular mountain setting.

This program is designed for participation over the entire five-week period. Variable dates will not be considered.

Who should apply?
Artists working in the mediums of ceramics and sculpture are invited to apply. Residencies are for visual artists with an exhibition record who have had formal training in visual arts, or equivalent experience and recognition from their peers.

Ceramics Studio Practicum Visual + Digital Arts @ Banff Center for the Arts


Studio Practicum programs are opportunities that expand and enhance participants’ technical and conceptual skills, and increase knowledge in the various mediums supported by the Visual + Digital Arts areas.  The Ceramics Studio Practicum program offers practical experience in ceramics techniques and building processes, kiln firing (electric, gas, soda, raku, and wood), and ceramics studio operation for the support of artistic practice.

Practicum participants will receive regular mentorship and feedback from Studio Facilitators and staff in support of their professional development. Under the guidance of the Ceramics Facilitator, this practicum program will assist staff in the delivery of Visual + Digital Arts residency programs and events, learn maintenance and safe operation of the Ceramics facilities, and provide assistance to artists-in-residence working in this area.

What does the program offer?

Practicum programs offer a dynamic combination of learning opportunities through workshops, demonstrations, and presentations; contact with professional staff, visiting artists, and faculty; and through collaboration with Visual + Digital Arts and other Banff Centre arts programs. Learning objectives are agreed upon in consultation with mentors at the start the program. Although the primary focus of this Practicum is ceramics, learning opportunities may also be available in other visual arts disciplines.

Learning opportunities are primarily practical, hands-on experiences arising from the participant’s support of the Visual + Digital Arts residency programs. This provides participants the opportunity to improve their technical and artistic knowledge, decision-making and problem-solving skills, communication and critical thinking, teamwork, and leadership skills. In addition to the everyday responsibilities, participants will have dedicated time to realize their individual learning objectives in consultation with their mentor.

Who should apply?

This program is ideal for recent graduates of a studio-based program with an emphasis on ceramics (undergraduate or graduate), wishing to gain professional experience within an institutional context.  Candidates for the Ceramics Studio Practicum program must possess a solid foundation in this area with knowledge of various ceramic techniques, including an intermediate level of experience in at least TWO of the following: kiln operation, fabrication techniques, mold-making, slip-casting, and ceramic materials (clay bodies, glaze chemicals, etc.).  As Visual + Digital Arts is a multi-disciplinary facility, it is also an asset if candidates have foundational skills in another studio area, in particular woodworking or metal working.

Artists from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Full details here.

call for emerging artists: Banff Artist in Residence

March 06 – March 31, 2017
Application deadline: October 19, 2016


Banff Artist in Residence (BAiR) Emerging is an immersive program of
studio practice, creative exploration, and critical feedback for artists
in the early stages of their careers. BAiR Emerging combines the
artistic freedom of a self-directed residency with the supportive
benefits of an organized program.  As well as having the space to
create, research, and experiment, participants are part of a community
of emerging artists committed to developing and expanding their

What does the program offer?

Throughout a period of four weeks, artists will have opportunities to
hone their individual practice or collaborate with others, present work
to their peers, engage in critique, attend lectures and events across
campus, and learn from demonstrations in various visual art production
techniques. Artists will benefit from the insight provided by a curator
through consultation and studio visits. In addition, visiting artist and
winner of the 2016 Emerging Atlantic Artist Award, Anne MacMillan, with
share her work and career journey. The self-directed nature of this
program will leave ample time for independent learning and developing
the internal motivation and drive needed to be a successful artist.

This program will provide professional development opportunities for
emerging artists by opening up new possibilities and directions in the
production of their work. Our knowledgeable staff will be on hand to
offer demonstrations, technical support, and provide access to
facilities in photography, sculpture, printmaking, papermaking,
ceramics, fibre, video, digital technology, and more.

Who should apply?

This residency is for emerging artists and curators who have
completed University level training in visual arts (preferably within
the last five years), hold an active exhibition record of at least two
years in length, and show evidence of dedication in their pursuit of an
artistic career.

The program is designed for full participation over the entire four week period. Variable dates will not be considered.

Full details here:

call for participants: Kiln Raising @ Banff Centre with Robin Dupont and Dan Murphy


May 30 – June 24, 2016

Application Deadline February 3, 2016


In the spirit of a community barn raising, this residency will bring
together emerging and established ceramic artists to create new work and
explore kiln construction, culminating in the building and firing of
The Banff Centre’s first wood fire Train Kiln.

The use of wood to “fire” clay is a continuity of technology and
tradition from ancient history into contemporary practice.  The
characteristic earthen tones, ash deposits, burnt sienna flashings,
natural glaze surfaces, and spontaneous effects, are sought after in
atmospheric firing processes.  The Train Kiln, named after its elongated
rectangular shape reminiscent of a rail car, epitomizes these effects.
Soda firing techniques, surfaces, textures, and processes will also be

What does the program offer?

Participating artist will delve into wood kiln history, theory,
principles of design, construction and firing process with the goal of
understanding and maximizing the nuances of wood firing and its
relationship to form and surface.  Discussions and workshops addressing
clay-body formulation, wheel and hand building processes, loading and
firing strategies for atmospheric kilns, are also part of this
residency.  As well, artists will have time to explore independent
projects and push their work in new creative directions through studio
visits with faculty mentors and feedback from peers.

Who should apply?

This residency is for emerging and experienced ceramic-based artists
with an exhibition record and formal training in visual arts, or
equivalent experience and recognition from their peers.

Full details and application requirements:

residency opportunity: WOOD/SODA/FIRE/BANFF


Ceramics Thematic Residency

Program dates: April 27, 2015 – May 22, 2015

Application deadline: January 28, 2015


Robin DuPont – Faculty,

Dan Murphy



As technological changes have gradually infiltrated most aspects of
modern life, both for benefit and detriment, some things remain robustly
human and process-based and fast-tracking is counter-productive. In the
world of ceramics, already a very time-centric occupation, wood firing
remains a bastion of thoughtful, concentrated, measured activity.  Go
too quickly in any part of the journey and the results will underwhelm.
Focusing too much on outcome without proper attention to process can
lead to disappointment, if not disaster. Deep learning and satisfaction
are just two of the results of such engagement – not to mention the
comradery, collaborative spirit and decision making which fuel it.

This residency is an opportunity to work alongside other wood and
soda fire enthusiasts; to create, share ideas, techniques and
inspirations, and in turn, be inspired by the stunning surroundings of
the Rocky Mountains which we will take time to discover and explore. We
will fire The Banff Centre’s venerable Noborigama kiln –
designed and built three decades ago -around which a host of memorable
conversations, art work, challenges and celebrations have emerged and

The residency is best suited to emerging and established artists with
wood and/or soda firing experience who want to push their work in new
creative directions.

Program structure and benefits:

  • Shared studio with 24-hour access 
  • A community of artists working together 
  • Studio visit with faculty
  • Public lectures by faculty, visiting artists, and guests
  • Technical assistance for wood and salt kiln usage
  • Access to The Banff Centre Paul D. Fleck Library and Archives
  • Plus membership at the Sally Borden Fitness and Recreation Centre 
  • Artist rates for Banff Centre events