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Province supports inclusive, diverse arts sector with $2.7 million

December 15, 2022 at 2:05 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

More than 250 artists and arts organizations throughout B.C. are benefiting from over $2.7 million in BC Arts Council (BCAC) grants to support a more inclusive and diverse arts sector.

“These grants are an important part of increasing access to arts funding for a broader range of organizations and individual artists,” said Lana Popham, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport. “These grants are being provided at a critical time when B.C. artists and arts organizations are rebounding from the pandemic to increase opportunities and benefit a greater diversity of artists and arts organizations working in B.C.’s vibrant arts and culture sector.”

The BCAC is working to build a more diverse and equitable funding structure to support the arts and culture community. The work is in alignment with government priorities and responds to stakeholder feedback received from consultations held by Bob D’Eith, Parliamentary Secretary for Arts and Film.

“Through BCAC grant funding, we are paving a path toward reconciliation, equity, diversity and inclusion within B.C.’s art community,” D’Eith said. “These grants are supporting a more diverse group of artists and arts organizations reflective of the incredible talent across our province.”

The funding includes scholarships, project assistance for performing artists and professional organizations, and arts-based community development. Grants range from $3,000 to $48,000.

“Funding for the arts and culture sector plays a critical role in the well-being of healthy and vibrant communities,” said Sae-Hoon Stan Chung, chair, BCAC. “Through these latest rounds of funding, we are making progress in the BC Arts Council’s goal to support a more diverse pool of artists and arts organizations. These efforts foster a flourishing and dynamic arts and culture sector, which in turn strengthens and improves opportunities for B.C. artists and communities.”

Priority was given to equity-deserving organizations and artists as well as to communities outside of the Capital Region and Greater Vancouver. Distribution of grant funding included:

  • $25,000 to Runaway Moon Theatre to support the first phase of development of a community parade of trees that are native to the province;
  • $28,000 to Kermode Friendship Centre to support the engineering and installation of the carved Honouring Our Children Totem Pole, a community celebration, the creation of a documentary, and a community-building cultural-awareness dialogue;
  • $9,000 to artist Tarun Nayar to support ModernBiology, a live and online presentation of environmentally, electronically composed Indian classical music; and
  • $10,450 to Smithers Gallery Association to support a two-week compensated artist residency program for marginalized or under-represented artists or art forms with a guaranteed exhibition.

“This grant is an acknowledgement of the value of the work we do within B.C.’s arts community,” said Cathy Stubington, Runaway Moon Theatre, located in Secwepemc territory. “We are dedicated to creating theatrical, multidisciplinary productions that tell the stories of those who live here. Many people of Enderby, Splatsin First Nation and other communities in this valley become involved in our projects. We are enthusiastic about receiving this grant that will help us move forward with our latest project that highlights the beauty of, and our connections with, trees native to B.C.”

The Province provided $35.8 million in base funding to the BC Arts Council in 2022-23. Since 2016-17, the BC Arts Council base budget has increased by $15 million.

Learn More:

BC Arts Council grant recipients:

BC Arts Council:

BC Arts Council’s Extending Foundations: Action Plan 2022-2024:

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