Calgary theatre company to offer ‘Artistic Basic Income’ for artists with disabilities

CALGARY — A Calgary theatre company that features the work of artists with mixed abilities is seeking applicants for a new kind of guaranteed basic income.

Inside Out Theatre launched its Artistic Basic Income program September 1, when it started accepting applications from self-identifying artists with a disability, including d/Deaf artists, MAD artists, and/or artists living with mental illness who live in Alberta.

Two artists will be chosen via lottery draw to receive $6,000, to be spent however that artist chooses to spend it, in an effort to support their artistic process.

Black, Indigenous and other Artists of Colour, all of whom face added barriers and marginalization, are being recognized by Inside/Out with a guarantee that at least one of the winners will come from one of those communities.

“Inside Out will celebrate and promote any work created by these artists,” said artistic director Ashley King in a release, “but will not expect any work to come back to Inside Out. By which we mean, this isn’t a commission or artist residency, it’s not a gig. It’s a guaranteed basic income.”

Ashley King

How to apply

Applications are being accepted through Sept. 30 at Inside Out’s website.

Furthermore, entries can be submitted through a typed online form, video ASL submission, mailed paper application or by phone.

Applicants will be asked if they identify as an artist, identify as having a disability, identify as d/Deaf, identify as MAD or living with mental illness, and if they identify as Black, Indigenous, or a person of colour.

They will also be asked about artistic or creative goals they may have for the coming year, in addition to filling out an optional, anonymous survey about their financial lives.

Each artist selected will get $6,000 paid out over a period of time between six and 12 months.

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