Province boosts arts and culture funding

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Government is boosting funding to the BC Arts Council by $15 million over three years to create new programs that encourage more inclusivity and accessibility in the creative sector, including those that support emerging Indigenous artists.

“B.C. is so fortunate to have an incredibly talented arts and culture community. This new funding will open doors for artists, writers and creators across the province, so they can continue to inspire and engage us all,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture. “Investing in a dynamic creative economy is another way we are helping to build strong, connected communities and make life better in B.C.”

With Budget 2019, the Government of B.C. announced an additional $15 million over the next three years to BC Arts Council, bringing its annual budget to $34 million in 2019-20. In addition to new programs, this investment will also enable the council to further build on the funding increase provided in 2018 to enhance the capacity of arts and culture organizations in more than 200 communities.

“Support for artists and arts and cultural organizations is so important,” said Susan Jackson, chair, BC Arts Council. “We are pleased to provide arts funding on behalf of the Province to support the sector and to contribute to the vibrancy of communities and regions throughout British Columbia.”

The BC Arts Council is the government’s lead agency for advancing artistic development as part of a prosperous creative economy. The council awards grants through a peer assessment process that draws upon the expertise of British Columbia’s arts and culture community.

Quick Facts:

  • Budget 2019 makes the second substantial investment in the BC Arts Council by the B.C. government.
  • Budget 2018 invested an additional $5 million annually into the council, bringing its total budget from $24 million to $29 million in 2018-19.
  • The council had previously not had an increase in its budget since 2013.
  • This new funding supported professional arts organizations, community festivals and programs that promote experimentation and innovation in arts organizations.
  • The fall round of BC Arts Council grants (September to December 2018) totalled nearly $10.9 million. A total of 397 grants were awarded to artists, museums, book publishers and other arts and culture organizations in more than 200 communities throughout the province.

Learn More:

For a full list of BC Arts Council Grant recipients, visit:

For more information about the BC Arts Council and to apply for grants, visit: