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Northern Arts

The Ontario Arts Council recognizes and values the distinctive nature of the arts produced in Ontario’s Northern regions. We also acknowledge that Northern audiences need access to arts experiences.

The Northern arts program addresses some of the particular challenges of Northern artists: higher costs for equipment, materials and travel, limited access to non-governmental sources of revenue and fewer opportunities for professional development. See PDF FileOAC’s maps of geographic regions to locate your area on our maps.

In fulfilling its mandate, the OAC serves one of the most diverse cultural, racial, linguistic and Aboriginal populations in Canada. Through its programs and services, the OAC supports artists, organizations and communities across Ontario, and welcomes all forms of artistic expression and practice.

Projects eligible for OAC funding through the Northern Arts program include:

  • New Work created by individual artists, arts organizations, ad hoc groups and collectives based in Northern Ontario;
  • Presentations that promote and distribute the work of Northern artists. This funding stream also supports exhibitions, arts publications, single and series presentations and Northern audience-development projects;
  • Skills / Career Development opportunities for Northern artists and arts professionals. This funding stream also supports projects which bring Northern artists together through conferences, workshops and seminars, or projects that benefit artists’ work and career development;
  • Working with Community grants support projects where artists are facilitating arts workshops with learners or participants in schools or community settings. Projects may include collaborations, community arts, arts education, or artist residencies where communities are being engaged in arts activities and a creative process.

Northern Arts does not support proposals under consideration for another OAC program. It does not pay capital expenses, ongoing salaries or office costs.

You are not limited to this program.

For more information

  • Christina Akrong, Northern Arts Program Officer, 647-258-5075, toll free in Ontario 1-800-387-0058 extension 5075,
  • Marilyn McIntosh, Northwestern Consultant, 807-622-4279, toll free in Ontario 1-866-391-2221,
  • Darlene Naponse, Northeastern Consultant, 705-222-0263,  
  • Terry Gitersos, Program Administrator, 416-969-7401, toll free in Ontario 1-800-387-0058 extension 7401,   

Other Programs Available to You

  • Aboriginal Arts programs are designed specifically for Aboriginal artists, groups and arts organizations.
  • Arts Education and Community and Multidisciplinary Arts programs support artists, groups and arts organizations working collaboratively in schools and community settings.
  • Organizational Development helps organizations build capacity through programs such as Compass.
  • There are programs that help individuals undertake residencies in Canada, and around the world.
  • Skills and Careers includes programs that support artists and arts professionals who want training or professional and career development.
  • Touring programs help artists, groups, arts organizations and performers interested in touring throughout Ontario, in Canada and around the world.
  • Works in Progress - Northern Competition is a special deadline to increase applications and success rates for professional writers in Northern Ontario. The Northern deadline is restricted to those writers living in Ontario’s Northern regions.