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Artists In The Library

Grants to Toronto, Ontario Nonprofits and
Artists for Arts Programming in Local Libraries

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Toronto Arts Council (TAC) and Toronto Public Library (TPL)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

09/16/19 11:59 PM


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Grants of $20,000 to Toronto, Ontario nonprofit organizations and artists for art residencies in selected public libraries. Applicants must contact staff prior to applying. Funding is intended to create new opportunities for local artists of all disciplines and increase arts access in underserved communities

Participating libraries for the 2019 grant deadline include Albion Branch, Cedarbrae Branch, Downsview Branch, Fairview Branch, Malvern Branch, Mimico Centennial Branch, Oakwood Village Library and Arts Centre, Richview Branch, Scarborough Civic Centre Branch, and York Woods (Yorkgate Mall) Branch.  

Artists in the Library is an artist residency program intended to create new collaborative opportunities for Toronto artists and increase arts access in underserved communities by animating libraries in Etobicoke, North York, and Scarborough. The Artists in the Library program provides funding to professional artists, arts organizations and collectives working in any artistic discipline to undertake community-engaged artist residencies in selected branches of the Toronto Public Library. Resident artists will deliver free public arts programming, such as performance creation programs, community-engaged arts programs, visual and media arts installations and exhibitions, workshops, artist-talks, open studio sessions, arts education programs, mentorship opportunities, performances and other public arts activities. 

The grant amount includes artist fees for both offsite preparation time and onsite program delivery time, travel expenses, all materials, and any other project expenses incurred by the applicant.

Residencies should be comprised of approximately 225 hours (based on a solo artist residency) of onsite public programming in total, depending on the programming activity and the number of artists involved. Programming schedules are developed by artists/organizations/collectives in conjunction with TPL branch staff. Timing, space, scheduling, and availability may be limited, depending on the branch. Public programming activities must take place at the branch. Offsite public activities will not be eligible. Programming activities can take place in programming rooms, open spaces (i.e.:the stacks) or any space within the branch, subject to negotiation with TPL staff. 

Please note: onsite public programming hours may include creation, rehearsal, performance, exhibition, workshop, open studio, public consultation, community-engaged practice, artist talks, readings, etc.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 172829

Estimated Size of Grant:

- The grant amount is $20,000.
- Projects involving Deaf artists and artists with disabilities may apply for an additional TAC grant up to a maximum of $5,000.

Term of Contract:

Projects must take place in 2020. Most residencies will take place between September and December 2020 and may span either 3 or 4 months in duration, depending on the project and the branch.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Applicants must be professional artists or professional not-for-profit arts organizations or collectives. Experience working with communities or children and youth is an asset.

A professional artist is someone who has developed their skills through training and/or practice; is recognized as such by artists working in the same artistic tradition; actively practices his or her art; seeks payment for her/his work; and has a history of public presentation.

You may not apply as an individual and be part of an organization or collective applying in the same competition.

Eligibility criteria specific to Individuals
If the applicant is an individual artist, the following eligibility criteria apply:
- Individuals must be Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents or have an application pending for Permanent Resident Status or be a Protected Person (approved refugee claimant). If requested, you must be able to provide documentation to verify this.
- Individuals must have been a resident of the City of Toronto for at least one year prior to the deadline, and live and work in Toronto for at least 8 months a year. A Post Office Box address cannot be used to meet the residency requirement.
- Undergraduate students are not eligible to apply to this program.
- TAC recognizes that due to systemic barriers within the broader arts community (e.g. limited mainstream presentation opportunities for artists from equity-seeking communities) that some flexibility may be required in interpreting eligibility criteria to take into account equivalent professional experience and contexts. Potential applicants from equity-seeking communities are encouraged to discuss their eligibility with the program manager in advance of submitting an application.

Eligibility criteria specific to Organizations and Collectives:
If the applicant is an organization or a collective, the following eligibility criteria apply:
- Organizations and collectives must be incorporated non-profit arts organizations or unincorporated arts collectives which operate on a non-profit basis. A collective is defined as two or more artists working together under a group name, either on a single project (ad hoc) or on an ongoing basis. For collectives of two artists, both must be City of Toronto residents. For collectives of more than two artists, the majority of members must be City of Toronto residents.
- Organizations and collectives must be located in the City of Toronto. A Post Office Box address cannot be used to meet this requirement.
- Collectives must be prepared to submit bank account information (in the name of the collective as listed in the application) if the application is successful

Pre-proposal Conference:

Artists in the Library – Information Session
Monday, July 29, 2019 at 6 PM – 7:30 PM EDT
Oakwood Village Library (341 Oakwood Ave.)

Artists in the Library Grant Program: Grant-Writing Workshop
Thursday, August 1, 2019 at 1 PM – 3 PM EDT
Toronto Arts Council
26 Grand Trunk Cres, Toronto, Ontario M5J 3A9

Artists in the Library Grant Program: Grant-Writing Workshop
Friday, August 2, 2019 at 1 PM – 3 PM EDT
Toronto Arts Council
26 Grand Trunk Cres, Toronto, Ontario M5J 3A9

For more details and to RSVP:
July 29:

August 1:

August 2:

Pre-Application Information:

New applicants to the program are encouraged to speak with the Program Manager prior to submitting an application. Please contact the Program Manager at least two weeks in advance of the deadline.

All applicants must visit their proposed Toronto Public Library branch and discuss the proposed programming with the branch TPL liaison before submitting an application (see attached appendix for contact information). Please contact the TPL branch liaison at least two weeks in advance of the deadline.

Applicants are required to register and submit the application, including the required support material, on TAC Grants Online.

Applicants will be notified by email when the results are available, and will be able to log in to TAC Grants Online to receive their results. Notification will be received within three months of the deadline date. Results are not released over the telephone.

Contact Information:

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

Online application:

For further information on this program, contact Strategic Programs Manager Erika Hennebury at:
416-392-6802 ext. 219

26 Grand Trunk Crescent, Suite 200
Toronto, Ontario
M5J 3A9
Phone: 416-392-6800
Fax: 416-392-6920

Grant Coverage Areas:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: Ontario