A Symbiotic Artist Care Fund



On May 11th, 2023, Vines Art Festival will be hosting a Fundraiser at Heritage Hall to continue supporting, nurturing and advocating for artists within our community. Our goal is to reach $40,000 for The Artist Survival & Healing Fund by July 15, 2023. Your donations will ensure we are able to provide critical support for artists in need. All donations are eligible for a tax receipt.


The ways in which we communicate need is very similar to the ways in which the trees and plants around us communicate via mycelium, a network of exterior synapses firing off chemical messages, moving nutrients and immune protecting protocols. Mycelium builds communities that create healthy relationships.

The Artist Survival and Healing Fund and Artist Care Program gives artists holistic support without the bureaucratic processes that hinder the relationship with not only the artist but the community as a whole.


It has been reflected back to us in our community consultation process that Vines organically fits into the role of holding an Artist Care service. We have been nurturing meaningful relationships for the past several years and know that the only way forward is collectively. 


The Artist Care Program provides opportunities to give artists holistic support without the bureaucratic processes that hinder the relationship with not only the artist, but the community as a whole. Our Artist Care model is designed to ensure supplies and supports are distributed for survival and healing needs while also protecting the longevity of our Ecosystem. 

A one-time show of support, made at a critical time and in a timely manner, can make all the difference to someone facing crisis due to the financial instability artists have long been told is their lot in life.


This project is visioned and held by artists whose knowledge comes from their lived experience facing marginalization that leads to financial barriers and believe that the ability to create art needs to be accessible, safe and accountable. Specifically being led by people who are Black, Indigenous, of colour, migrants, houseless, queer, trans, and disabled artists of varying capacities and needs to ensure no one is left behind in forming this promise of futurity.


Mutual-aid, peer-to-peer fundraising, volunteer support, and community outreach, all with the goal of providing nimble, timely support for artists to meet their essential physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs.

Funds are dispersed for:

    • Time Sensitive Support
    • Culturally Relevant Training
    • Health, Wellness and Preventative Support
    • Tools and Supplies


Our Goal is to reach $40,000 by July 15, 2023.

Art is a story; and we were fortunate enough to bear witness to hundreds of them at Vines Art Festival. We are prioritizing the lived experiences of QTBIPOC and Disabled artists and fostering honest ongoing relationships and conversations amongst each other. We are creating a community ecosystem that creates and heals in our own parks. Supporting the Vines Artist Survival & Healing fund means championing the vision of a brighter future with more of us in it.


“The Artist Care Fund was a real lifesaver for me. I was able to keep on-top of paying rent and medication in the slow season (I am a junior tattoo artist). Since I am chronically ill and technically run my own business it’s hard to keep on top of my expensive medical bills and a studio for working out of. Was a nice break in a time I’m usually extremely stressed out. Thanks for what y’all do !!!”


“The Vines Artist Care Fund supported me when it felt like I was on the verge of drowning in my finances (twice!). As a marginalized artist in this city who struggles to ask for help when in need, the Vines team made it so easy for me to reach out and receive support in a number of ways, not only financially. Because of this support I was able to take more care for myself without over-exerting in order to secure funds, causing more burnout. You never know what life will throw at you, but one thing I do know is that in terms of community, Vines has your back.”


“vines artist care fund was instrumental in ensuring i had food and housing security during a crisis so i was able to maintain & advance my artistic practice.”


“Thanks to the support of the Artist Care Fund I have been able to sustain my art practice as my main form of income. As a racialized immigrant who doesn’t have access to reliable employment, my art practice has been a way to sustain myself. The financial support Vines has given me has been used towards the purchase of tote bags that I can print and sell my art on (among other art materials), they have also supported me in buying essential things like groceries and healthcare. It’s always important to support artists by buying their art but when we don’t have groceries or have chronic injuries it becomes impossible to even create art and Vines has shown me compassion and support in a way that they prioritize my well-being before how much art I can produce. Without Vines support throughout last year I wouldn’t be able to afford my basic necessities, to the point that I doubted I could remain in Canada.”


“These funds kept my head above the water line. I was able to take care of my basic needs and also take care of my emotional and mental needs and paid for a few therapy sessions. These funds also helped pay for much needed transportation for me to stay connected to my community.”


Propagators Circle

Adriana Contreras

Graphic Recorder, Illustrator & Designer


Adriana Contreras (she/her) was born in Bogotá, Colombia and moved to BC with her family in 1998, at the age of fifteen. Artistic expression has always been a central part of her life but became an essential tool for navigating the world as a first-generation immigrant. Adriana completed her BFA at SFU School for the Contemporary Arts in 2006 and has worked and volunteered with numerous Cultural and Community-based organizations for 20 years.

My favourite plant right now is a Mango. I started to grow one from a seed in the fall. It’s so beautiful.

A  art piece that has impacted me is Carnaval de Barranquilla (Barranquilla’s Carnival). It happens annually, and I was able to attend in 2019 when I went back to Colombia after ten years of not visiting. I had not been to Barranquilla since I was six years old. It’s a city in the Caribbean where my dad spent many years of his life. What impacted me the most about the Carnival was how many people were involved and the passion I saw in every single event. There were thousands of people who took part in the multi-day event: dancers, musicians, actors, costume designers… it felt like everyone in the city was part of a huge performance.

Heather Lamoureux

Artistic Director


I am a community organizer, artist, and facilitator living on Musqueam, Squamish and Tsliel-Waututh territories. I am the Artistic Director at Vines, and have grown with the festival since it’s beginning over the past seven years. I am so grateful to have been learning with the community of artists who percolate the work we do. I am committed to my responsibility to imagine and co-create nurturing creative spaces for artists. Outside of Vines I utilize my Somatic Education training from Tamalpa Institute to facilitate movement and expressive arts classes. In the past I have worked for Raven Spirit Dance, PuSh International Arts Festival, Dancing on the Edge and the Firehall. I love to garden at Harmony garden, X̱wemelch’stn pen̓em̓áy, hang out by a river and eat good food with community. I can sometimes be found performing in unexpected outdoor spaces with the collective Pressed Paradise.

My favourite plant –  impossible to choose I love so many..… wild columbine or raspberries

Art piece that has impacted me is Ana Mendieta – Siluetas, her work opened my mind to art being inseparable from life. I go back to this work and her vision again and again.

jaye simpson

Communications Director


jaye simpson is an Oji-Cree Saulteaux nonbinary transfemme storyteller from the Sapotaweyak Cree Nation. An avid community organizer with a fondness of Social Justice and Equity, they find themselves often planning rallies, teach-ins, reading series and celebrations of resistance.

jaye is a displaced indigenous person living, creating and occupying on xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-waututh), and sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) First Nations territories.

Their favourite plant is hard to choose as they love time with nature and gardening. Daffodils and dandelions are especially important to them. An art piece/work that deeply impacted them was Children of God, a play by Corey Payette.

jaz whitford

resident anti-professional artist


jaz is a 2 spirit anti-professional, working as an interdisciplinary artist centering community care, ancestral connections, and QTPOC relief. they live semi-nomadically, along the unceded west coast of turtle island as well as the interior of so-called british columbia. jaz’s ancestry ties them to unceded secwepemcúl’ecw in the southern interior of so-called british columbia and more distantly to scotland, though the bulk of their work has bloomed within the traditional territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm , skwxwú7mesh, səl̓ilwətaɁɬ təməxʷ, Stó:lō, and Secwe̓pemc nations where they have been overwhelmed with the warmheartedness, generosity, and support of the host nations and indigiqueer community.

Katia Asomaning

Outreach and Community Relations Director


Katia Asomaning (pronouns: fluid) is a settler on the unceded territories of the šxʷməθkʷəy̓əmaɁɬ təməxʷ (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh-ulh Temíx̱w (Squamish) and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ təməxʷ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. They are passionate about: advocating for marginalized people; community building; uplifting and celebrating QTBIPOC voices; storytelling and narrative; and wellness.

In addition to her work in community relations and outreach with Vines, Katia is also Director of Operations for Pink Flamingo, a Black-led advocacy group that uplifts the QTBIPOC community by facilitating art, events, workshops, education and safer spaces. Katia’s values are intersectional, anti-racist and in solidarity with ongoing social justice movements and they are passionate about building equity across as many sectors as they can get their hands on.

Her favourite plants are carrots and cannabis and the art piece that most impacted her to date is The Guide & Protector, a mural located in Mohkinstsis by Jae Sterling.

Senaqwila Wyss

Resilient Roots Director


Senaqwila Wyss is Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, Tsimshian, Sto:lo, Hawaiian and Swiss. She holds a Bachelors of the Arts Degree in the Faculty of Communications, Arts and Technology, with minor in First Nations Studies. She also holds a First Nations Languages Proficiency Certificate in the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Sníchim, and is pursuing her diploma in furthering her fluency and proficiency in the Squamish language. She and her husband are raising their 4 year old daughter, and 2 years ago adopted her 9 year old niece, to be first language speakers, which has not been done in her family four generations after colonial impacts; while also learning with her husband Justin Leo’s Líl̓wat Ucwalmicwts language from the Lil’wat Nation. She practices ethnobotany with traditionally trained mom Cease Wyss with indigenous plant medicines. Senaqwila was raised learning these ancestral teachings and uses plants as teas, medicines, tinctures and ceremony. She passes on these teachings to her children.

Siobhan Barker

Artist Care Consultant


Siobhan (sha-von/Sio/they/she) is of a stolen people living on the stolen, unceded, and ancestral land of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. Sio was born and grew up on the traditional territory of the Three Fires Confederacy of the Ojibwa, Odawa, and the Potawatomie Nations in Windsor Ontario. As a Black presenting, gender-fluid person, of mixed African-Indigenous-Latinx-European ancestry living with disability they recognize and value the many intersectionalities that contribute to furthering decolonization practices. Siobhan is a published and Nationally recognized bilingual writer and performer who’s community and artistic work, explores relational justice in many forms. A Justice/Equity/Diversity/Inclusion(JEDI) speaker on organizational change, a facilitator with an emphasis on Disability Justice, Body Liberation and Food Justice with Hogan’s Alley Society, Open Access Foundation, The Federation of Black Canadians, Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals, Community Food Centres Canada, and through consultancy.

Marcelo Ponce

Artist Care Consultant


Hello! This is Marcelo. I’ve been a settler on Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh territories since 2012. I’m from Iztacalco, Mexico City. I joined Vines in 2019 and quickly took to putting time and thought into the way that we do accessibility. My work is grounded in my experiences of being casted out of multiple spaces because of my immigration status, trans experience, queerness and autism. I have experienced organizations whose accessibility efforts are performative and who refuse to take accountability. My focus as an “accessibility coordinator” is to make sure that we are reaching out to communities that have been systemically pushed away from witnessing and making art. You can email me at to ask questions, give me feedback, and make accessibility related requests.

Pollinators Circle

Amanda Parafina

Audrey Siegl

Dae Nneka

Fanny Kearse

Buni Kor

Jada Gabrielle Pape

Starr Trickey

Laura June Albert

Corrina Keeling

Joyce Rosario

Tonye Aganaba

Founding Funders



Your donation will support the growth of eco-arts in Vancouver.

Vines Art Festival takes place on the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh peoples.



Pandora Fieldhouse
2325 Franklin Street
Vancouver, BC
V5L 1S2