Individual Artist Program 2018

Individual Artist Program 2018

Calgary Arts Development is pleased to announce a new investment program for individual artists. We believe that investing in individual artists’ practices throughout the year is fundamental to ensuring that the city of Calgary is home to a vibrant arts community and for Calgarians to have access to meaningful artistic experiences.

This program is intended to support all aspects of an artists’ practice and artistic goals by removing financial barriers.

Funds from this program may go towards almost any combination of activities related to an artist’s practice, including creation of work, development activities, professional development and learning, and innovation or risk-taking.

Description of Role

Assessors will be required carefully consider applicants and their projects, presentations or performances.

The criteria for the Individual Artist Program are:

  • Artistic Impact: The artistic quality of the work being proposed, its potential to further applicant’s artistic goals, and its potential to meaningfully contribute to a related artistic discipline or milieu.
  • Public Impact: How meaningful, intentional and thoughtfully you propose to engage with audiences, participants, or communities with you whom you make, share, or develop your work and/or artistic practice.
  • Innovation/Learning: The potential for the proposed activities to significantly transform the way you create, develop, share, or understand your work, as well as the potential for the activities to help you develop the skills, knowledge, or relationships required to achieve your artistic goals.
  • Planning: How feasible, effective, and researched the proposed activities, timeline, and budget are.

Assessors should consult the Individual Artist Program guidelines for further information.

Each member of an assessment committee will be required to read and comment on all applications, after which assessors will meet as a group to discuss, assess and prioritize applications to provide final investment recommendations to Calgary Arts Development.


Assessors are responsible for:

  • Making funding recommendations to Calgary Arts Development in keeping with the stated criteria for the Individual Artist Program.
  • Participating in assessor training and orientation sessions hosted by Calgary Arts Development.
  • Attending arts events in Calgary for the applicants when possible.
  • Advocating for the arts in Calgary.
  • Encouraging their respective communities to participate in Calgary’s arts sector.


Calgary Arts Development optimizes the composition of the Assessment Committee to ensure that it represents a diversity of specializations, artistic practices, backgrounds and perspectives. Assessors should have an exemplary track record of professional, business or community-minded ethics and a strong commitment to the continued growth and vitality of the arts in Calgary. Assessors are appointed by staff through a public nomination process. Candidates are screened for qualifications in line with program needs, as well as any potential conflicts of interest.

Qualifications and Required Skills

Community Members: Calgarians with an appreciation for the arts (any discipline) who actively attend arts performances and presentations. Community members should possess skills that are transferable to the non-profit arts sector, including, but not limited to:

  • Non-profit board governance
  • Organizational management
  • Business planning and project management
  • Marketing and communications
  • Event production
  • Investment and resource development
  • Community and government relations
  • Design or creation within the broader creative industries

Peers: Artists and arts professionals who possess professional experience and knowledge directly relevant to the arts sector. Calgary Arts Development follows the definition of “peers” established by the Canada Council for the Arts: “people who, by virtue of their experience, knowledge and open- mindedness, are capable of making a fair and informed assessment of the comparative merits [of submissions]. … Peer assessment ensures that artistic quality is (able to be considered) in decisions made and thus protects diversity of opinion and artistic freedom.”


Assessors’ time commitment for the Individual Artist Program is:

  • May – June 2018: One training and orientation call with Calgary Arts Development Staff
  • June – July 2018: Review and evaluate applications online
  • July 2018: Two or three full-day review meetings to discuss each application and make 
recommendations for funding.

Lines of Accountability and Communication

Assessors will report to Calgary Arts Development staff. All deliberations of the Assessment Committee as well as all records, material and information obtained by a member and not generally available to the public shall be considered confidential. Adhering to the Terms of Reference, assessors shall maintain the confidentiality of their deliberations and shall safeguard such records and information from improper access.

Conflict of Interest

Assessors will follow Calgary Arts Development’s Policy on Conflict of Interest and Code of Conduct (excerpt from Calgary Arts Development’s Governance Manual below). All assessors are required to sign a statement agreeing to fully disclose any actual or perceived conflict with any applicant whose submission they have been appointed to review. Assessors with an actual or perceived conflict with an applicant will be removed from the assessment process for said applicant.

“Upon consideration of any proposed activity with the potential to benefit an organization or initiative with which the director or volunteer committee member shall participate in the decision making process where there is a potential or actual conflict of interest. The individual so affiliated shall leave the room during discussion and shall not vote or use personal influence in the decision-making process.”


Protecting the Anonymity of Assessors During the Granting Cycle
Calgary Arts Development requests that individuals engaged as assessors maintain their own anonymity and the anonymity of other assessors in order to prevent the possibility of pressure being applied from grant applicants and the community that could affect assessments.

Disclosure of Assessor Names by Calgary Arts Development
Calgary Arts Development will release assessor names as part of its annual Accountability Report published the subsequent year.

Protecting the Confidentiality of Applicants and Applicant Information
All deliberations of assessors, all corporate records and material submitted by applicants as part of their applications that is not generally available to the public shall be considered confidential. All assessors are required to safeguard such records and information from improper access and to sign and adhere to an agreement of confidentiality prior to accessing any confidential information.


This role is a volunteer position, and Calgary Arts Development will provide an honorarium of $6 per application and $50 per meeting, as well as parking and travel reimbursements. Meals will be provided.

Contact Information

Please contact the Community Investment team with any questions about the assessment process at 403.476.2031 or

Download Assessor Terms of Reference as a PDF

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