Meeting in Ottawa on February 3rd, 2017

As part of their ongoing discussions, the members of the Visual Arts Alliance (VAA) met in Ottawa on February 3rd, 2017.

Two main issues have been keeping the VAA members busy over the last few months. One of them is the creation and implementation of the New Funding Model (NFM) by the Canada Council for the Arts. The VAA has been following closely the rollout of the NFM, first to ensure that the interests of the visual arts, media arts and contemporary crafts milieus will be well-served by the new programs and, second, to provide input into the development of this funding model. The VAA members have been meeting regularly with officers and directors at the Council, asking many questions and raising awareness on points of concern for our community. The New Funding Model is now being implemented and the VAA continues to ask questions and clarify various measures on behalf of its members. As the implementation of the NFM continues over the next few years and its effects start to become apparent, the VAA intends to maintain its vigilance to make sure the best interests of the visual arts, media arts and contemporary crafts are preserved.

The other focus of members of the VAA is an upcoming survey from the Department of Canadian Heritage. Over the last few years, the VAA has initiated discussions with Heritage to raise the profile of visual arts at large within the Department, notably by following up on the study conducted in 2011 by INRS’ Professor Guy Bellavance, The Visual Arts in Canada: A Synthesis and Critical Analysis of Recent Research. One of the main recommendations of this study was that “the art economy or market should be the priority for future research”, as it is essential to understand how the whole system contributes to the visual arts economy. The Visual Arts Alliance is proud to announce that it has succeeded in convincing Canadian Heritage to undertake a survey on the art market in Canada, that will be launched in the coming months. Members of the VAA have been working in consultation with officers at Heritage to make sure the survey covers the needs of the community, is well adapted to its target respondents and is relevant to its stakeholders. We will keep you posted for developments before the summer.

Photo taken in the CMA office in Ottawa, during the February 3rd meeting. Front row, from left to right: Marcia Lea, CARFAC; Anne Bertrand, ARCA; Milly Ristvedt, RCA; Audrey Vermette, CMA. Back row: Elizabeth Edwards, ADAC; Christine Blais, AGAC; Moira McCaffrey, CAMDO; Emmanuel Madan, IMAA; Lise Leblanc, AGAVF; Bernard Guérin, RAAV; Daniel Roy, VAA Secretary.