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Curatorial Projects: Indigenous and Culturally Diverse

Grants to Ontario Arts Nonprofits and Minority Arts
Curators for Exhibitions and Curatorial Projects

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Ontario Arts Council (OAC)

Deadline Date:

10/05/17 1:00 PM ET


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Grants of up to $30,000 to Ontario nonprofit arts organizations and Indigenous or minority arts curators for exhibitions and other curatorial projects. The goal of this program is to enhance the ability of the Province's artist-run centers, public galleries, and other organizations to present the projects of Indigenous curators and curators who are people of color in contexts determined by the participants.

The program supports the development of the work of Ontario-based Indigenous curators and curators who are people of color, and the exhibition infrastructure in Ontario. The program helps build awareness and connections between galleries, audiences, and curators.

There are two categories:
-Curatorial projects by Indigenous curators
-Curatorial projects by curators who are people of color

What this program funds:
-Visual, media arts and craft exhibitions presented in Ontario; and related publications, arts education or outreach activities.
-Opportunities for Indigenous curators and curators who are people of color to work with mentors to develop capacity such as research, writing, design, administration, networking and documentation, if they choose.
-Inclusion of international or non-Ontario artists or mentors, if a clear rationale is provided.
-Fees for the curator, mentor and artists; publication expenses, and exhibition productions costs.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 153154

Estimated Size of Grant:

-Curatorial projects by Indigenous curators: Maximum $30,000
-Curatorial projects by curators who are people of color: Maximum $30,000

This program will fund fees for the curator (maximum $10,000), mentor (maximum $2,000) and artists; publication expenses (maximum $5,000), and exhibition productions costs (maximum $10,000).

Term of Contract:

The activities for which you are requesting funding cannot start before the deadline, cannot finish before you receive your grant results, and must be completed no more than two years after you receive the grant results.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Who is Eligible:
-Professional independent Indigenous curators and curators who are people of color, partnering with a public art gallery, artist-run center or other not-for-profit arts presenter. The curator must be an Ontario resident with a permanent physical address in Ontario.
-Public art galleries, artist-run centers or other presenters planning to work with an independent Indigenous curator or curator who is a person of color. Organizations must be not-for-profit and have a permanent physical address in Ontario.
-This is a shared application between the curator and the organization, with either the curator or organization as the Lead Applicant.

Program-Specific Definitions:
-Indigenous: Individuals who self-identify as First Nations, Métis or Inuit.
-By culturally diverse, OAC is referring to people of color based on the Government of Canada’s definition of “visible minorities,” which is “persons, other than Aboriginal peoples, who are non-Caucasian in race or non-white in color.”

Individuals must:
-Be a professional artist/arts professional. The OAC defines a professional artist/arts professional as someone who has developed skills through training or practice, is recognized by artists working in the same artistic tradition, has a history of public presentation or publication, seeks payment for her or his work and actively practices his or her art. Short breaks in artistic work history are acceptable.
-Be a Canadian citizen or a Permanent Resident of Canada, or have an application pending for Permanent Resident status and, if requested, be able to provide documentation to verify this.
-Be a resident of Ontario who has lived in Ontario for a minimum of one year prior to making a grant application; and
-Live in Ontario no less than eight months a year.

IMPORTANT - Absences from Ontario:
In some circumstances, you may be eligible to apply to OAC while you are temporarily absent from Ontario (e.g. for employment or artistic opportunity). Your absence must be no more than one year and not recurring. You must maintain your permanent physical address in Ontario, and you cannot apply for support from the jurisdiction of your temporary residence.

Organizations must:
-Be incorporated in Ontario or federally;
-Have a head office in Ontario;
-Be governed by a volunteer board of directors or an advisory board;
-Have a designated staff member responsible for the applicant’s arts programming, and
-Present/produce/publish professional Ontario artists, arts professionals and/or arts groups/ collectives and/or arts organizations.

Who is Not Eligible:
-The curator cannot be staff or board member at the presenting venue.
-The curator cannot be a full-time student (registered in two or more courses).
-Municipalities, colleges and/or universities.
-Commercial galleries.

What this Program Does Not Fund:
-Exhibitions or activities that take place outside of Ontario.
-Projects that do not include the payment of professional artists’ fees.
-Mentor fees for staff of the presenting venue.
-Fundraising activities.
-Student projects or exhibitions featuring work by students.
-Art acquisitions or commissions.
-Activities that take place in a commercial gallery.
-Costs related to the creation of art work.
-Capital expenses and purchase of equipment.
-Ongoing operating or administrative costs of organizations.

Important: You are not eligible to apply to this program if you have an overdue or unapproved final report in any OAC grant program. If you are unsure of the due date or status of any final report(s), please contact OAC.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications are due October 5, 2017, 1:00 PM ET.

The Lead Applicant must initiate the application in Nova.

Applications are available online approximately two months before the deadline.

Grant notification will be available approximately four months after the deadline.

If awarded, the Lead Applicant will receive the grant check.

More information about OAC project programs may be found here:

Nova User Guide:

Application Questions:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online through Nova:

Zhe Gu, Officer

Caroline Cotter, Program Administrator

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: Ontario