A Portrait of 75 Artist-Run Centres
Understanding Canadian Arts Through CADAC Data
IssueFinances and attendance of arts organizations
Based on financial and statistical data reported to CADAC (Canadian Arts Data / Données sur les arts au Canada), this report outlines the finances and activities of 75 artist-run centres “that receive recurring funding from the Visual Arts Section of the Canada Council for the Arts”. One of the limitations of statistical data from CADAC is that “statistical data are not validated and represent what is reported by organizations and may include double counting”. Financial information, on the other hand, is reconciled by CADAC staff.
In 2013, the 75 artist-run centres had total operating revenues of about $18 million, 73% of which was received from government sources (including 42% from the Canada Council), 15% from private sector fundraising, and 11% from earned revenues.
Between 2010 and 2013, total revenues increased by 8% (not adjusted for inflation). All three of the major revenue sources increased: private sector revenues by 27%, earned revenues by 26%, and public sector revenues by just 2%.
The 75 centres had 183 full-time equivalent staff members in 2013. Salaries and professional fees accounted for 26% of total expenses in that year. Artist fees and artistic salaries were paid to almost 3,800 people, 81% of whom were Canadian (3,057). Artist fees and salaries represented about 16% of the centres’ total expenses.
Two specific benchmarks related to marketing and fundraising expenses are provided in the report. For every $1 spent on marketing activities, the 75 centres generated $1.46 in earned revenue. For every $1 spent on fundraising, the centres raised $4.06 in private sector revenues.
The 75 centres (collectively) reported an accumulated surplus of $3.7 million in 2013. Their working capital ratio was 1.54%. This ratio provides an indication of “the ability of an organization to meet its payment obligations as they become due”. A separate Canada Council report (on art galleries) indicates that “a ratio of less than 1% indicates financial vulnerability regarding the organization’s capacity to cover its short-term payables.”
In 2013, the artist-run centres presented 747 exhibitions, the vast majority of which were presented locally (686, or 92%). Ninety-one percent of the 8,436 artists featured in local exhibitions were Canadian. Total attendance at local exhibitions was 625,600 in 2013. In addition, 1.3 million people participated in arts education activities at reporting centres. Artist-run centres also produced 114 professional training and development programs (4,270 participants), 242 artist-in-residence projects, and 61 conferences.