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Where are the supports for the arts?

Before we can begin to take advantage of Vancouver Island/Gulf Islands incredible potential in the Creative Economy, we have to understand what resources currently exist to support artists, artisans, creative entrepreneurs and arts organizations.

The best place to start is to map our creative assets and resources: the physical spaces where creative people go to develop skills, build communities of practice, source materials, showcase products and engage with audiences.

In simple terms, mapping our assets means discovering: who knows what where and who needs what where.

So in the winter of 2022 we mapped existing resources such as art schools, supply stores, makerspaces, venues, studio spaces, galleries, and fabricators. Image of our map below. (Unfortunately we built our map on a platform that now has a pay wall, so we are exploring other options for continuing to build this dataset.)

This exercise was as useful for what is revealed as what it didn't - the map contains a lot of gaps - especially for rural/remote and Indigenous artist communities. In 2023 we started to strategize on how we might fill these gaps. See my other blog post for details.

Huge thanks to the Cultural Human Resources Council for providing Creative Coast with an internship grant that allowed us to hire the fabulous Daisy Duncan. This map was one of Daisy's many contributions to developing a greater understanding of our arts ecosystem.


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