1. Funding
  2. Grants
  3. Explore and Create
  4. Artist-Driven Organizations

Artist-Driven Organizations

Explore and Create

Snow covered mountains - banner for Explore and Create Program

Planning to apply to the Artist-Driven Organizations component of the Explore and Create program?

The Canada Council for the Arts has extended the deadline from January 2024 to the spring of 2025.

Apply on the portal

Create an account and submit one or more profile(s) for validation at least 30 days before you want to apply

The Artist-Driven Organizations component of Explore and Create supports the development of artistic activities, from research, creation, and production through to dissemination, by Canadian arts organizations that are driven by the vision of artistic leaders. Grants fund the activities of organizations mandated to support the creative process of artists, stimulating the emergence of new artistic voices and offering a range of artistic experiences to the public.

Most core grant applications must be translated into French or English. Please see guidelines for details and the translation deadline date.

Activities - what you can apply for

You can apply for a contribution towards:

  • artistic development
  • creative research
  • creation
  • production
  • dissemination

You can’t apply for activities that receive funding from another Canada Council program or those on the general list of ineligible activities.

Who can apply

Types of potential applicants to this component include:

  • artistic organizations

Your eligibility to apply to this component is determined by the validated profile created in the portal.

To be eligible, your organization must create, produce, present or exhibit the work of artists and be driven by the vision and voice of an artistic leader or group of artists. Your organization must support the development and dissemination of works by Canadian artists and meet the following basic administrative, programming and financial criteria:

  • presently receive core (operating) support from this component.

If your organization is presently receiving core support from another component, or has undergone a recent change in key artistic leadership, you must contact your Program Officer to confirm your eligibility before you apply. An Artist-Driven Organization that has undergone a change in key artistic leadership, and that is currently receiving core support from this component, may be treated as a new applicant with no commitment to maintaining the organization’s current level of funding.


  • have received 1 composite grant or 2 Canada Council project grants in the last 5 years. This excludes grants from the following components and programs:  Travel, Representation and Promotion, Translation, Small-Scale Activities, Digital Strategy Fund, Leadership for Change: Grants for Organizational Development, Flying Squad, and Visiting Foreign Artists.
  • be an incorporated not-for-profit arts organization
  • work with a professional staff
  • have at least 5 years of continuous professional artistic activities that are accessible to the public
  • have had total revenues exceeding $75 000 in each of the last 3 years (some exceptions may be considered)