Arts & Culture
We cultivate and support artists and scholars whose work centers historically underrepresented, non-dominant cultures and who seek to explore the relationship between them and dominant culture while increasing access to opportunities within traditionally exclusive arts and culture spaces.
Zimzalla continues the work launched 25 years ago, inspiring cultural
connectedness through our programming including:
Wallis Annenberg Helix Fellowship
This Fellowship gathers artists and scholars to form a supportive community for a profound immersion in regions that for centuries sustained a vibrant and dynamic multiethnic civilization before the devastating impacts of genocide and displacement. Including a brief residency at the Institute and a month in a mobile residency in Eastern and Central Europe, the Fellowship supports, develops, and distributes new creative and scholarly work inspired by what Fellows encounter together. This program is generously funded by the Annenberg Foundation.
Zimzalla Creative Community
Zimzalla is an artist residency that brings together a broad, transdisciplinary alliance of artists to celebrate and explore the everyday and historical intersections where marginalized cultures, languages, and people make contact. Zimzalla convenes a diverse array of contributors, who bring their perspectives, skills, and expertise to cultivate innovative artistic and scholarly work on the land. Artists spend two weeks in residence at the Institute, prior to a mobile residency in borderland spaces throughout the world, which vary from year to year.
We craft projects that engage with intercultural history to find models of creativity, interconnection, and vibrance in the face of challenge, loss, and trauma. We incubate new arts programs, host online and in-person discussions, and curate performances and exhibitions inspired by our unique point of view.
“I’ve recommended the Fellowship to dozens of different colleagues since I’ve gotten back from our expedition. I’ve told them ‘just apply… it’s an incredible program, you will learn so much and work with amazing people.”
— Zoë Aqua | 2019 Helix Fellow
Join Our Team
Topa Institute invites artists and teachers to be part of our retreat faculty team in 2024. If you are interested in sharing your talent and passion with us and the larger community, please fill the form below.