Cape Town Artist Residency

Friends, Family, Lovers, Patrons, 

I am very happy to share with you that I have been invited to be an Artist-in-Residence this November, 2016 at the Side Street Artist Residency  in Cape Town, South Africa. I have set up this fundraiser because I need your help to get there. I am asking for your good vibes and kind wishes. I am also asking for a financial contribution if you can spare it, and here's why:

Earning an invitation to spend a month writing in Cape Town is a nothing short of a dream come true for me. The residency is in the Woodstock neighborhood, the same neighborhood where my Grandma Connie is from. She grew up on Greatmore Street; I would be be living only a few blocks away. My grandmother immigrated to Canada with her family in 1974. My mother was only 10 years old.  I want to tell their story.

above: My grandmother and my mother visit Montreal in the summer of 1974.

As a graduate student at the University of Toronto, I have dedicated myself to learning about my South African roots. I have studied South African history, culture and literatures extensively. Through my research and through long talks with my mother and my grandmother, I have tried to understand their lives, tried to understand what it means to be a woman of mixed-race. Travelling to South Africa and learning about about my heritage, experiencing the culture first-hand would be a wonderful, meaningful culmination of the hard work I have done in the past year. 

However, this opportunity comes at a cost. The total residency fee for four weeks is $2,507. To host this campaign, gofundme takes 5% - which is why the total amount of the fundraiser is $2,633.

I am working hard to save up for this trip. $2,507 is just the cost of my accomodation- it does not include round trip flights, food, transportation or tours. That is the cost of the residency only. My total costs for this trip will be approximately $6,600.00. 

this photo of one of the residency buildings, and the header photo as well are both from

I'm reaching out to you all through this campaign because I am unfortunately not eligible for Ontario or Toronto Arts Council grants. I have also applied to various granting bodies at the University of Toronto and Massey College- however, the residency begins in only a few weeks. I will be in Cape Town this November, 2016. I hope that by persuing multiple fundraising opportunities that I can earn the money needed for this residency, but this campaign right here is my best bet.

I read somewhere that a goal is just a dream with a plan attached to it. I have my dream. I have my plan. I hope that together we can achieve my fundraising goal.

If you can contribute even just $5 I would be so very grateful to you. If you can't, please send your good vibes and kind wishes.

Thank you so very much for your love and support.
Gratefully yours,
  • Anonymous 
    • $500 (Offline)
    • 59 mos
  • Kim & Adam  
    • $20 (Offline)
    • 59 mos
  • Kerry Thompson 
    • $20 
    • 59 mos
  • Marc Junker 
    • $50 
    • 59 mos
  • Nonnie O'Brien 
    • $30 
    • 59 mos
See all


Kieran O'Brien 
Toronto, ON
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