Canada Council announces new fund for 2017

Canada Council director Simon Brault says the federal government's reinvestment in the arts "opens the door to an artistic renaissance," with plans to support Indigenous art, digital technologies and boost Canada's international profile.

New funds for 2017 to go to support more Indigenous art, sharing art through digital technologies

Simon Brault, president and CEO of the Canada Council for the Arts, called the $1.9 billion set aside in the March federal budget for arts and culture is an 'unprecedented' reinvestment. (CBC)

Keen to get started on what it describes as an "unprecedented" reinvestment in the country's arts and culture sector, the Canada Council for the Arts is announcing a new strategic plan and a special one-time $33.4 million creation fund.

The $1.9 billion set aside for arts and culture in the March 22 federal budget is a "historic" move, said the council's director and CEO, Simon Brault.

"We believe it opens the door to an artistic renaissance, with outcomes that will benefit Canadians and the world," said Brault.

New Chapter fund

The one-year fund, called New Chapter, is open to artists and arts organizations to celebrate Canada's 150th anniversary in 2017 and will go towards projects to be presented across Canada and internationally through 2019 and beyond.

An additional $1.8 million will be invested in what the council refers to as reconciliation and Indigenous arts' initiatives.

The council will also implement a new digital strategy to help the professional arts sector use digital technologies to create and share work with audiences here and internationally.

The plan commits to action in four areas:

  • Increasing support to artists, collectives and organizations striving for excellence.
  • Using digital technology to amplify the quality, quantity and sharing of Canadian art.
  • Renewing the relationship between Indigenous artists and Indigenous and non-Indigenous audiences.
  • Raising the international profile of Canadian artists.

The details of the council's strategic plan, Shaping a New Future 2016-21, are to go online today.