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NFB/imagineNATIVE Seek Innovative Interactive Project Proposals by Indigenous Artists in Canada


August 23, 2016 – Toronto – National Film Board of Canada (NFB)

The NFB in partnership with imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival, are proud to announce a newly redesigned partnership supporting Indigenous artists in Canada’s leading interactive media field

The NFB/imagineNATIVE Interactive Partnership allows for an expanded focus on the development phase of the selected project, with a wider range for content & production budget scope, as well as greater synergy and cross-collaboration between the NFB and the selected artist.

An Indigenous Canadian (or international Indigenous artist with Canadian citizenship), working alongside the NFB Digital Studio in Vancouver, will development of a particular idea during the course of one year. The phase will consist of minimum three trips to Vancouver – two to work alongside the NFB Digital Studio, and a dedicated 2-3 day “Digi-Lab” with a creative team of as part of the development process. The initial phase will consist of cash and in-kind support up to $50,000.

Project proposals are encouraged to be culturally, creatively and technologically daring in their vision for their project.

Selected by NFB and imagineNATIVE Selection Committee through a call for submissions, this initiative will build upon the selected artists artistic and technical skills through the following:

  • Intensive development for the artist and their project with a minimum of three visits to the NFB Digital Studio Vancouver;
  • As part of the residency, the artist would not only work on their own project, but would be invited to observe and liaise with the NFB team on the production and development of other projects, furthering cross collaboration, skill building and knowledge sharing;
  • NFB Digital Studio Vancouver would produce the development phase of the project: from idea through conception, interactive design, visual/graphic design, and proof of concept and/or prototyping.
  • Development phase would include a DigiLab of the project: bringing together a small team of key creative thinkers tailored to the needs of the project, for a 2-day development lab, in order to support the evolution of the project idea.

The NFB would have first right (but no obligation) to produce the work; imagineNATIVE would provide coordination of the submission and selection process, as well highlight the selected artist at next year’s festival through artistic and Industry engagement.

Over the past four years NFB and imagineNATIVE have collaborated on a digital partnership which aims to support new forms of Indigenous artistic expression and offers Canadian Aboriginal artists an opportunity to create audacious, innovative and socially relevant new media works. It has resulted in the release of 3 captivating interactive projects that demonstrate the spirit and heart of Aboriginal experiences in Canada today: De Nort (2012) by the ITWE Collective, Similkameen Crossroads (2013) by Tyler Hagan, and the 2015 Venice Biennale-selected Ice Fishing (2014) by Jordan Bennett.

“In a climate where opportunities to support emerging, Indigenous new media artists are exceptionally rare, this partnership is a critical, vital opportunity for Canadian Aboriginal artists.” remarks Daniel Northway-Frank, imagineNATIVE’s Industry Director. Robert McLaughlin, Executive Producer of the National Film Board of Canada’s Digital Studio adds “Sourcing and supporting new and under represented voices within the Canadian cultural landscape is a key creative criteria of the National Film Board of Canada and the partnership with imagineNATIVE has been crucial to meeting this mandate.”

The recipient of the project will be announced at the 2016 imagineNATIVE Festival on October 22, 2016.

Applications for the NFB/imagineNATIVE Interactive Digital Residency are now being accepted at www.imagineNATIVE.org with a deadline of September 26, 2016.


Associated Links

imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival
NFB/imagineNATIVE Interactive Partnership

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Media Relations


Daniel Northway-Frank
Industry Director | imagineNATIVE
dnf@imaginenative.org or (416) 585-2333.

Dana Dansereau
Digital Producer | NFB
D.Dansereau@nfb.ca or (778) 835-2079


Jennifer Mair
National Film Board of Canada
j.mair@nfb.ca or (416) 436-0105

Lily Robert
Director, Communications, Partnerships and Public Affairs, NFB
Tel.: 514-283-3838
Cell: 514-296-8261
E-mail: l.robert@nfb.ca

  • About the NFB

    Founded in 1939, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) is a one-of-a-kind producer, co-producer and distributor of distinctive, engaging, relevant and innovative documentary and animated films. As a talent incubator, it is one of the world’s leading creative centres. The NFB has enabled Canadians to tell and hear each other’s stories for over eight decades, and its films are a reliable and accessible educational resource. The NFB is also recognized around the world for its expertise in preservation and conservation, and for its rich and vibrant collection of works, which form a pillar of Canada’s cultural heritage. To date, the NFB has produced more than 14,000 works, 6,500 of which can be streamed free of charge at nfb.ca. The NFB and its productions and co-productions have earned over 7,000 awards, including 11 Oscars and an Honorary Academy Award for overall excellence in cinema.