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Detail of image by NASA Hubble Telescope

August 31, 2021

The Spectrum Bursary

Our eyes are sensitive to a narrow band of electromagnetic waves known as the visible light spectrum. However, other wavelengths exist outside of our narrow vision. It is only when we apply ourselves, and commit to improving our ways of looking that we discover the rich qualities of non-visible light. 

SPAO’s new Spectrum Bursary will support artists from racialized and underrepresented communities in order to shine a light and manifest their photo-based careers through the SPAO Residency. SPAO is committed to investing in marginalized artists’ careers who face forms of systemic racism and oppression in Canada. The goal of this bursary is to alleviate the cost of the Residency and to support the voices of marginalized artists who are nurturing their artistic practices while navigating an arts sector that often presents barriers to achieving their goals.

The SPAO Residency provides mentorship, support and structure for professional photo-based artists to focus on the next level of their art practice. SPAO provides the physical space and regular consultations designed to meet the individual needs of our participants. Artists who complete the residency are offered the opportunity to exhibit their work in a group exhibition at The SPAO Gallery. 


To be eligible applicants must self-identify as Black and/or Indigenous and/or a member of another racialized community.

In addition, we welcome and encourage applicants who face further challenges and marginalization including those who identify as LGBTQ2S+, new Canadians and disabled.