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Three artists selected for pilot Digital Diasporas residency in Australia, Canada and China partnership

The Australia Council for the Arts and the Canada Council for the Arts are pleased to congratulate the three recipients of Digital Diasporas, a new online research residency delivered in partnership with China Residencies: Amy Lam (Canada), Casey Tang (USA) and Tian Zhang (Australia). 

The recipients will be hosted by three leading cultural organisations across China, Australia and Canada and will each be awarded AUD $10,000 to support intercultural and cross-border research and development during the residency period in late 2021.   

Digital Diasporas supports international peer-to-peer co-learning and mentoring for experimental artists and curators working across art forms, who identify with the Chinese diaspora.  

The program is delivered as a fully online experience responsive to the current travel restrictions in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

The residencies are hosted by cultural organisations that are leading the way in digital and/or diaspora-led programming.  

Residents will primarily work with one host organisation to research themes such as diasporic cultures and spaces, flows of people, goods and capital, alternative community and kin-making, digital cultures, media arts, philosophies of technology and place-making—and any intersections of these.  

The funding partners are supporting three host organisations to design a program of remote/online mentoring, networking, research and development for the resident they host, while the group will also come together for online convenings. 

The residency host organisations are:   

The Australia Council’s Head of Industry Development, Jade Lillie said:  

“The partnership would contribute invaluable knowledge to a world-wide and ever-expanding exploration of the opportunities and possibilities for collaboration and exchange offered by the digital residency experience. Digital Diasporas explores how the concept of international mobility is expanding, embracing new technologies and digital platforms. Even at this time of disruption, artists continue to work across borders.”   

“We are pleased to deliver this in partnership with the Canada Council, in a context of global recovery, that requires joint contributions to the rebuilding of a more sustainable, equitable and inclusive arts and cultural ecologies. It is vital that the international profile of arts, culture and creativity represents the cultural diversity and complexity of contemporary Australia, and contemporary Canada.” 

Sylvain Cornuau, Head, International Coordination, Cultural Diplomacy and Partnerships said:  

‘’We are proud to partner with Australia Council for the Arts on this innovative residency project that explores diasporic cultures and spaces through the lens of innovation and openness. While we are still under various constraints, the circulation of ideas and collaborative exchanges remain critical for artists across borders. We hope that Digital Diasporas will contribute to nurture important global conversations at the intersections of cultures.’’  

Digital Diasporas is supported in the context of a partnership between the Australia Council for the Arts and Canada Council for the Arts, aiming to share policies, research and knowledge, and to facilitate collaborations and reciprocal exchanges between organizations and artists of both countries.  

Digital Diasporas is jointly funded by the Canada Council for the Arts and the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, administered by the Australian Embassy, Beijing. 

About the Canada Council for the Arts  

The Canada Council for the Arts is Canada’s public arts funder with a mandate to “foster and promote the study and enjoyment of, and the production of works in, the arts.” It contributes to the vibrancy of a creative, open, diverse, and Indigenous-inclusive arts and literary scene and to its presence across Canada and abroad. Its international initiatives foster dialogue and reciprocity and contribute to the vitality of cultural diplomacy.  

About the Australia Council for the Arts  

The Australia Council is the Australian Government’s principal arts funding and advisory body. Our purpose is to champion and invest in Australian arts and creativity. We advocate for the social, cultural and economic value of the arts and creativity. We provide advice to government on matters connected with the arts.

Visit China Residencies website to learn more about this initiative.


Image credit: Yuula Benivolski.

Amy Lam

Amy Ching-Yan Lam is an artist and writer. She has shown performance, film, and exhibition projects internationally, both solo and as part of the art collective Life of a Craphead (with Jon McCurley). She was born in Hong Kong and lives in Toronto, Canada, which is the land of the Anishinaabe (Mississauga) nation, as well as the territory of the Wendat and Haudenosaunee.

Amy will be researching a body of work about property, domesticity, miniature dogs, “wasted” time, and dreaming, arising from minor histories of the Opium Wars.

Casey Tang

Casey is a multidisciplinary artist and researcher interested in sensory experiences that can attune lived world experience to ecological and biophysical processes in the context of planetary-scale systems from environmental to technological. He has exhibited in the US, Europe, and Asia.

Casey will develop a posthuman phenomenological framework utilising various disciplines, including physics, anthropology, and biology, threaded together by complexity science and biosemiotics to connect the “Human” back to “Nature,” Being to an emerging planetary-scale body and consciousness, and our semiosphere to the multilevel phenomena of ecological processes.


Image credit: Zan Wimberley.

Tian Zhang

Based on Darug Country in western Sydney, Tian Zhang is an award-winning curator and changemaker working at the intersections of art and cultural practice. She is a founding co-director of Pari, a collective-run gallery in Parramatta.

Tian intends to work on a collaborative project to explore and critique the concept of the diaspora within settler colonial environments.



Australia Council for the Arts

Brianna Roberts, Media Manager

Phone: (02) 9215 9030   Mobile: 0498 123 541



Canada Council for the Arts

Communications and Engagement

Phone: 613-239-3958 (Canada) / 1-800-263-5588 ext. 5151 (International)



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