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Sapporo Tenjinyama Art Studio: Artist in Residence Programme (Japan)

A lone figure trudging across a low hillside covered completely in fresh snow.

Sapporo Tenjinyama Art Studio’s AIR programme aims to support art collectives/groups creating and exhibiting new artworks/projects taking Sapporo/Hokkaido as a starting point for various types of research; for example, learning folk knowledge, field research or engaging with local people.

This year the programme theme is ‘the roads stretch on the snow’:

Sapporo is a snowy city. When it snows, boundary lines that had been previously visible, disappear. After the snow, the sidewalk I walk on is covered in white, and mysterious lines appear that may be a shortcut made by someone or a detour taken while searching for something. The paths on the snow seem randomly drawn but they actually hold an anonymous logic like that of a rambling curiosity – as if artists left the signs of their research in a certain place.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, we realized the power of natural, social, and historical boundaries as well as national and regional borders drawn by governments. In particular, social boundaries arose that led people to have less dealings with strangers. 2022 is the third year since the outbreak of the pandemic and I would like to blur the divisions and divides that inevitably happened to all of us, using artists’ overwhelming power of curiosity – like snow that falls and obliterates all boundaries.

Artistic research, local communities and the creative activities of artists moving to a certain place for a certain period of time shall leave these footprints. Even if we fail again this year, the snow will still return when winter comes again.

Two collectives/groups of artists who are mainly active in the art field will be selected for a residency from 12 October – 30 November 2022.

Among other forms of support, artists receive:

  • Up to 250,000 yen budget for travel from overseas (only for artists who have nationalities other than Japanese and live outside Japan) per collective/group.
  • 500,000 yen budget for living expenses during the programme period per collective/group.
  • 200,000 yen budget for production and research activities (various expenses such as materials and transportation) per collective/group.

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