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June 30, 2022

Call for Applications: Geoff McMurchy Artist Development Grant

Hosted by Kickstart Disability Arts & Culture

Geoff McMurchy (1955–2015), Kickstart’s founding Artistic Director, was a pioneer in the local and international disability arts community. Anyone who knew him will tell you that he was an amazing Artist, and a trailblazer in the disability arts and culture community, who influenced a huge number of people.

Geoff’s dream was that disability art be considered on the same level as all art. “My interest is that the art that is presented should not be through the filter of ‘disability’; I would like it to be appreciated as art, and you don’t have to like it,” he once said.

Kickstart wants to keep Geoff’s voice and spirit alive, so in 2019 we created the Geoff McMurchy Artist Development Grant. The grant is given annually to an Artist that identifies as living with a disability, residing in British Columbia, working in any media to support them directly with their artistic practice.


  • Must be a resident of British Columbia
  • Must be a practicing artist in any discipline
  • Must identify as: mad, D/deaf, disabled, crip, chronically ill, sick, etc (self-identification welcome)

The 2022 Grant Recipient will receive:

  • $3,000 cash award for artistic related costs
  • $250 Gift Card to OPUS Art Supply
  • A one year Membership to Kickstart
  • NEW: The opportunity to collaborate with Kickstart to present programming applicable to your artistic practice. This will involve working one-on-one with our Artistic Director to develop programming from the ground up. The successful grant recipient will be supported through one-on-one mentorship in order to plan out the programming, apply for funds from the appropriate granting body, and execute the programming for our community. Not only is this an opportunity to showcase the recipient and their artistic practice, it is an opportunity to strengthen an artist’s professional skillset, and engage with our community. While the stages of program planning and grant writing are unpaid, the artist will build into their grant a fee schedule that will pay them for the work of executing the programming.

Thank You to all who apply; the chosen recipient will be notified by August 1st, 2022.

Due to the volume of applications received we will only be contacting the successful candidate. A formal announcement of the recipient will be made via our website, newsletter and social media.


Have questions about the application?

If you have applied in the past, you’ll notice there are some changes to the application process and the award, so we have created a 1hr info session to answer any questions that may arise.

Join us for a 1hr info session where our Artistic Director Jenna Reid will give an overview of the application. Jenna’s presentation will be followed with a Q&A period. 


Kickstart Disability Arts & Culture

PO Box 2749 Station Terminal, Vancouver, BC, V6B 3X2, Canada

Phone number: (604) 343-9141

Email: hello@kickstartdisability.ca

Kickstart Disability Arts and Culture, in Vancouver BC, gives artists with disabilities a voice. This can mean everything from facilitating a disability art group, to bringing an international film to Vancouver, to presenting art exhibitions and concerts. We are committed to supporting and promoting artists in every discipline, with all disabilities (and sometimes collaborations with able-bodied artists). We present the best in Vancouver and BC, and where possible, we bring new voices to Vancouver from across the country and around the world. We support artists and develop audiences for an understanding of disability art. Becoming part of the larger picture, of course, means professionalism. Kickstart is also committed to presenting professional work in a professional context. To coin a phrase “authentic non-sentimental expressions of the disability experience”. In programming and curating, we present cutting-edge work as the artists we present offer distinct perspectives on the human experience – risk taking, artistically engaging, socially relevant and at times, challenging. We are a nonprofit Society and a registered federal charity in Canada, with a small staff and a dedicated crew of volunteers. Please check out one of our events and get involved with us!