The Case for the Arts

Toronto Arts Council supports the arts in every ward of our creative city.

Mix Mix Dance Collective's Emily Law and Ashley Perez's Masterclass. Photo by Ömer Yükseke


To learn more about the impact of Toronto Arts Council and the arts to our city, visit our Impact page



Leading into the 2023 By-Election for Mayor, together with our affilaite Toronto Arts Foundation, we created a document that highlights the importance of the arts to the health and well-being of Toronto and its residents. We encouraged all Mayoral candidates to think proactively about their arts platform. Browse below for key messages, and download the full document here



Toronto Arts Council and Toronto Arts Foundation invite all Mayoral candidates to champion the growth of arts and culture in Toronto.


  • Toronto’s strong and diverse city-wide arts sector exists thanks to decades of public investment and the dedication of artists and arts organizations of every kind
  • Leadership of the incoming Mayor is essential to build on Toronto’s strength as an inclusive, creative city and global cultural destination


  • Toronto is home to more artists than any other Canadian city
  • Artists inspire innovation across all sectors


  • Arts increase social engagement and connect communities across the city
  • Evidence links arts participation with improved mental health


  • Arts programming builds resilience among youth
  • Arts employment programs create meaningful career opportunities for young adults


  • Arts experiences cross language barriers
  • Arts promote belonging and inspire dialogue between cultures and communities


  • The arts and culture sector contributes $11B to Toronto’s GDP every year with the non-profit arts bringing in $230M in ticket sales
  • A vibrant arts scene is crucial to talent retention and new business investment in all sectors



Create and preserve affordable arts spaces

Toronto is facing an affordability crisis. The cost of living is skyrocketing, yet 69% of artists make less than Toronto’s living wage of $43K per year, and half make less than $30K. Access to safe and affordable space to rehearse, create and present art is essential to the success of the industry. A plan to create and preserve arts spaces is needed.

Champion Toronto’s next Culture Plan

An ambitious and achievable Culture Plan sets the stage for the future and signals Toronto’s confidence in the arts as a city-wide benefit. The City of Toronto released its last Culture Plan in 2011. Work has begun on a new plan to be released in 2024. Toronto’s next Mayor should champion it as their signature plan to lead the city forward.

Direct the 2% hotel tax increase to the arts

The additional 2% added to the Municipal Accommodation Tax in May 2023 is a welcome new investment opportunity. New $50M annual investment in arts experiences will increase Toronto’s ability to attract tourists, businesses and residents and increase the quality of life for all Torontonians. Allocating a share of hotel taxes to the arts is a successful strategy for US arts destinations including San Francisco and New York City.

Increase Toronto Arts Council’s budget

Toronto Arts Council (TAC) is the City of Toronto’s partner in delivering public funds to the arts equitably and effectively. Every year, TAC distributes $23+ million in grants directly to 950 artists and arts organizations, enabling them to create, connect and inspire. With more funds, TAC will be able to support more of the organizations and artists who are helping to build our vibrant, creative city and contribute to our economic growth.

Collaborate with Toronto Arts Foundation

Toronto Arts Foundation, an affiliate of Toronto Arts Council, has city-wide impact through initiatives like Arts in the Parks, which brings free arts experiences to communities across the city. The Foundation is ready to work with Toronto’s next Mayor on dynamic philanthropic arts solutions to the city’s most pressing challenges and opportunities.

Implement the 10-year Public Art Strategy

The Toronto Public Art Strategy (2020–2030), guided by a vision of creativity and community everywhere and underpinned by a commitment to advancing truth and reconciliation with Indigenous communities through public art, recommends 21 actions to strengthen the City’s commitment to public art.

Download here


Arts by Ward

Toronto Arts Council supports arts across Toronto. Click on the maps below for snapshots of TAC's impact. Save and share these posters to help you communicate the importance of the arts in the city. 

Ward 1: Etobicoke North

Ward 2: Etobicoke Centre

Ward 3: Etobicoke-Lakeshore

Ward 4: Parkdale-High Park

Ward 5: York South-Weston

Ward 6: York Centre

Ward 7: Humber River-Black Creek

Ward 8: Eglinton-Lawrence

Ward 9: Davenport

Ward 10: Spadina-Fort York

Ward 11: University-Rosedale

Ward 12: Toronto-St. Pauls

Ward 13: Toronto Centre

Ward 14: Toronto Danforth

Ward 15: Don Valley West

Ward 16: Don Valley East

Ward 17: Don Valley North

Ward 18: Willowdale

Ward 19: Beaches East York

Ward 20: Scarborough-Southwest

Ward 21: Scarborough Centre

Ward 22: Scarborough-Agincourt

Ward 23: Scarborough North

Ward 24: Scarborough-Guildwood

Ward 25: Scarborough Rouge Park