Studio M*
A collaborative research creation lab intersecting arts, culture and healing.

Studio M* was co-founded in Calgary, AB, Canada, September 2017 by artists, researchers, teachers Barbara Bickel and R. Michael Fisher as a space for creative inquiry, healing and communal gatherings and practices.

“An exciting new space in Calgary where the intersection between art and economy is being
explored creatively and …fearlessly! Facilitated by extraordinary people true Elders, who
won my admiration, affection and respect upon first meeting. Calgary is blessed!”
NHB, Founder of Awakening the Village (YYC)

Years prior to this newest collaborative adventure they co-founded In Search of Fearlessness Centre & Research Institute (ISOF) in 1991, and in 1995 Barbara and Pamela Grof co-founded The Centre Gallery (1995-2001) that was housed in ISOF. Archives can be found in the Glenbow Museum.

Barbara Bickel, Ph.D. is an artist-researcher, teacher, writer, independent curator and Emeritus Faculty of Art Education, Southern Illinois University. A multi-media and performance ritual artist, she practices socially engaged art with the human and other-than-human world. Her art and performance rituals have been exhibited and performed internationally. In 2020, her book Art, Ritual and Trance Inquiry: Arational Learning in an Irrational World was published with Palgrave MacMillan Press. She is co-editor of the book Arts-Based and Contemplative Practices in Research and Teaching, book series co-founder and editorial board member of Studies in Arts-Based Educational Research, and co-editor of Artizein: Arts and Teaching Journal. To view more of her art and arts-based writing visit

R. Michael Fisher, Ph.D. is an artist, philosopher, fearologist, writer, researcher, teacher and consultant. He has developed a unique approach to an aesthetic meditative practice working with pencil crayons in what he calls “fusion colouring.” A prolific writer, he had two 2021 books published; The Marianne Williamson Presidential Phenomenon with Peter Lang and Resistances to Fearlessness: Philosophy of Fearism Approach co-written with B. Maria Kumar, published by Xlibri. He has published many monographs and four earlier books, “The World’s Fearlessness Teachings,” “The Philosophy of Fearism: A First East-West Dialogue,” “Fearless Engagement of Four Arrows: The True Story of an Indigenous-based Social Transformer,” and Fear, Law and Criminology: Critical Issues in Applying the Philosophy of Fearism” co-written with Desh Suba and B. Maria Kumar. To view his research visit and to view his art and writing and to visit

Currently Barbara and Michael are in the process of co-writing a book to be published with Routledge in 2022, working title: Creative Practices for Community Care.

Since June 2021, Studio M* is located in the home space of Barbara & Michael in Nanaimo, British Columbia. We are grateful to be living as guests on the traditional territory of the Snuneymuxw First Nations and the unceeded territory of the Coast Salish peoples. We acknowledge the historical care for these lands and for the privilege of creating and living upon them.

Studio M* was originally located in the historic McHugh House from 2017 – 2020 – a Community Arts Hub of the Beltline Neighbourhood Association, with the onset of COVID it was re-located in Barbara & Michael’s home space in the Bridgeland Community of Calgary. Studio M* is grateful to operate during these years on the territory of the nations of Ktunaxa, Niitsítapi (ᖹᐟᒧᐧᒣᑯ, Blackfoot)StoneyTsuu T’inaSarcee of  Treaty 7 and the Metis Nation Region 3.

To book a studio visit email  studiomatrixialatgmaildotcom

M&B art pic
Barbara & Michael Photo at Suspicions art exhibition in front of Michael’s painting “Unconscious”