London Arts Council is requesting $450,000 through this business case to expand the capacity of Arts in Communities programs from the current investment of $50,000 to $500,000. Through four Arts in Communities programs (Artist in Residence, London Arts Live, Cultivating Allyship through the Arts, and Youth Art Incubation), LAC will provide adequate support and equitable opportunities for Indigenous artists, equity-deserving artists, and future arts professionals by supporting their growth and development and ensuring their artistic expressions and participation, thus encouraging their social and economic contribution to the London community.
Professional artists are significantly disadvantaged financially, and are one step below the poverty level. According to Statistics Canada, the median personal income of professional artists in Ontario was 41% less than that of other workers in 2020. Arts in Communities programs such as London Arts Live support hundreds of diverse artists with performance opportunities throughout London, while providing inclusive and accessible cultural experiences for Londoners and visitors. These curated activations contribute to the vibrancy and safety of London, especially in the core area, by bringing people together through live art and music performances and thus changing and enhancing the atmosphere and streetscape.