An extra $15 million in government funding to the BC Arts Council over the next three years aims to build new programs that encourage more inclusivity and accessibility in the creative sector, including for emerging Indigenous artists.
Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Lisa Beare announced the new funding on Wednesday, saying it is designed to help “open doors for artists, writers and creators across the province, so they can continue to inspire and engage us all.”
The influx of cash brings the Council’s annual budget up to $34 million for 2019-20. Not only is the intention to create new programs, it will work to further enhance the capacity of arts organizations in more than 200 B.C. communities, as a way to “contribute to the vibrancy of communities and regions throughout British Columbia,” said Arts Council chair Susan Jackson. The province’s three-year added commitment follows a $5 million annual increase that came as part of the 2018 B.C. budget.
The fall round of BC Arts Council grants (September to December 2018) saw 397 grants totalling nearly $10.9 million awarded to artists, museums, book publishers and other arts and culture organizations around the province.
In Greater Victoria, the largest of those grants included $319,000 for the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, $85,366 for Orca Book Publishers, $81,697 to the B.C. Museums Association, $74,970 for Intrepid Theatre Company Society and $56,640 for the Open Space Arts Society.
A full list of the most recent grants can be found at bcartscouncil.ca/mediaroom., where you can also find information about BC Arts Council grant applications.