About Us

Toronto Arts Council is the City of Toronto’s funding body for artists and arts organizations in Toronto.

Six dancers in blue costume perform on an outdoor stage.
Red Sky Performance, Miigis. Photo by David Hou (2017)

Toronto Arts Council (TAC) is the City of Toronto’s funding body for artists and arts organizations. Since 1974, TAC has offered innovative and responsive programs, enabling artists and arts organizations to explore, create and thrive. With funding of over $25 million annually, TAC grants lead to exhibitions, performances, readings and workshops seen each year by over 5 million people across the city. TAC is proud to play a leadership role in fostering Toronto’s dynamic and diverse arts scene.

Land Acknowledgement: Toronto Arts Council respectfully acknowledges the diversity of Indigenous Cultures and their connection to the Natural World we are privileged to share. We honour the Wendat, the Anishinaabeg Peoples, the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, most recently the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, and others who have walked this land or paddled these waters. We are grateful to the Ancestors and Elders of their Peoples and to their descendants who live and work with us on the back of the Great Turtle.

Our Mission

To support artists and arts organizations with responsive and innovative granting programs.

Our Vision

Creative City: Block by Block

Working to connect every Toronto neighbourhood with the transformative social and economic benefits of the arts.

Committed to inclusion and diversity, we support individual artists and arts organizations of every size and discipline. Our core principles are excellence, innovation and accessibility. 

What We Do

Governed by artists, arts workers, arts supporters and civic leaders who are representative of Toronto’s diverse cultural community and artistic practices, Toronto Arts Council:

  • Invests in artistic talent and organizational capacity to increase the city’s vitality and engage Toronto audiences
  • Creates opportunity for public access, participation and appreciation of art
  • Advocates on behalf of the City’s artists and works to increase public awareness of the value of art and to educate civic leaders on effective arts policy
  • Collaborates through its foundation (Toronto Arts Foundation) with public and private sector partners to increase resources and opportunities for artists
  • Supports cultural diversity and equity in arts creation and presentation. 


In 2016, Toronto Arts Council released a strategic plan that will guide and support TAC's operations until 2025. Four strategic priorities were identified:

  • New investment that realizes the potential of Toronto’s artists and arts organizations
  • Strong partnerships that extend opportunities, reach and profile of Toronto artists
  • Urban leadership that speaks with a compelling voice for a creative, equitable and thriving city
  • Responsive granting that reflects the city, embraces technology and builds on success.  

Read our Strategic Plan: Arts-Making 2025

Our Operating Structure

Toronto Arts Council is run by a volunteer board, volunteer committees and a small complement of professional staff.

Toronto Arts Council’s volunteer board and committees are made up of artists, other arts professionals and arts supporters. To guarantee accountability, City Council appoints two of its members to Toronto Arts Council’s up to 21 Board of Directors.

Toronto Arts Council reports to City Council through the City’s Economic Development Committee. Committees and grant review panels review applications for funding and make grant recommendations to the Board of Directors. Toronto Arts Council programs are funded through an annual appropriation from the City of Toronto.

Toronto Arts Council's two key operating principles – arm's-length funding and peer review – are applied to ensure the City of Toronto vigorously pursues artistic excellence and innovation and steadfastly protects freedom of expression.

What does it mean that TAC is an arm's-length arts funding agency?

TAC is not a city department but a non-profit organization under contract to the City. The terms of its Grant Agreement outline the ways in which TAC is accessible and accountable to City Council and the community at large.

Because of its arm's-length volunteer board, TAC is able to draw on 10,000 volunteer hours annually from its 22 members, two of whom are City Councillors, and 37 committee members who advise on grants for theatre, dance, visual arts/film & video, music, literature, and community arts.

Once TAC's board has approved the grants under the terms of its contract with City Council, TAC awards the funds, eliminating the need for City Council to debate and approve each grant.