Year of Public Art

Toronto Arts Council, in partnership with the City of Toronto, is supporting public art projects that will take place during the Year of Public Art in 2021.

Mural outside Westin Harbour hotel
“Best Beach” by Sarah Anne Johnson at CONTACT Photography Festival (2015). Photo by Toni Hafkenscheid



Toronto's Year of Public Art is 2021.  

Public art may include art in any media that takes place in public space, including contemporary visual and media arts, installation and performance.

Year of Public Art aims to be proactively inclusive of voices and stories that have been absent or under-represented from Toronto's public art landscape to date, including Indigenous voices and stories.

Year of Public Art will spotlight artwork in any medium by one or more artists that is created for a publicly-accessible space and free for the public to experience, and is significant in terms of duration, scale and potential for public engagement. The art medium may include, but is not limited to, sculpture and installation, performance, video, photography, painting, etc. Preference will be given to works that: 1) are implemented on a scale that will be noticed as out of the ordinary; 2) are of significant duration – e.g. installed over several months for visual artwork, or multiple performances occurring over an extended period of time for performance-based work; 3) are realized in inclusive barrier-free sites that are always publicly accessible; 4) demonstrate intention to engage with the public (e.g. through plans for promotion as well as interpretive tools, etc.).

Toronto Arts Council is pleased to partner with the City of Toronto on Animating Toronto Streets, a multidisciplinary program that will fund public art projects that take place in Year of Public Art 2021 and during Nuit Blanche.

Projects aligned with the Year of Public Art are also eligible to apply for TAC's Open Door program in the Big Ideas category: ambitious, timely projects with the potential to transform an artistic discipline, inspire a community of artists or elevate the arts sector as a whole.