Measures related to visual arts, architecture and fine crafts
In relation to visual arts, architecture and fine crafts, the Ministere de la Culture et des Communications' (MCC) role consists of supporting venues and ensuring that the Politique d'integration des arts a l'architecture et a l'environnement des batiments et des sites gouvernementaux et publics (policy on the integration of arts in the
architecture and environment of government and public sites and buildings) is applied.
The Politique d'integration des arts a l'architecture et a l'environnement des batiments et des sites gouvernementaux et publics (available online in French only) was adopted in 1961 and concerns all construction projects (expansion, restoration, redevelopment or repair projects aimed at repurposing the property) that cost $150,000 or more for public sites or buildings that receive government grants in Quebec. At least 1% of the construction budget must be allocated to integrating a work of art specifically designed for that location. Quebec is the only province in Canada to issue a decree paving the way for a public art policy.
The policy has three objectives:
- support the creation or purchase of works of art to be permanently integrated into architecture or the environment;
- increase the distribution of work by Quebec's professional artists and thereby help enrich citizens' lives through the presence of art in locations that do not usually showcase art;
- allow residents throughout Quebec to be more familiar with professional contemporary artists and modern art in its various expressive forms in the visual art and fine crafts sector.
The Conseil des arts et des lettres du Quebec (CALQ) also offers financial assistance programs to artists and organizations that do work in visual arts, fine crafts and architectural art, and the Societe de developpement des entreprises culturelles (SODEC) supports art galleries, visual artists, artisans, craftspeople, and crafts companies as well as workshop schools in fine crafts.
The Politique d'integration des arts a I'architecture et a l'environnement is a major factor in the democratization of art and supports its creation. Pieces created through this policy can be found in various public spaces (schools, hospital centres, libraries, courthouses, etc.). They include sculptures, paintings, photography, skylights, mosaics, etc.
Support offered by the SODEC and CALQ
Through the Programme d'aide a I'exportation et au rayonnement culturel [cultural export and promotion assistance program] (Sodexport), the SODEC is supporting the dissemination of artwork internationally as well as the development of foreign artisan and craft markets, as well as fine crafts companies.
In order to contribute to the development and professionalization of artisans, craftspeople and fine crafts companies, the SODEC provides financial assistance for the production and commercialization of Quebec fine crafts products. lt encourages research and partnerships between workshop schools, organizations, commercial modern art galleries, artisans, craftspeople and companies. lt also supports professional visual artists in acquiring creation equipment and tools and in developing marketing tools.
The CALQ offers emerging artist awards and development awards to visual artists, fine craftspeople and for architectural research. The purpose of emerging artist awards is to make it easier to embark on this career path by supporting initial professional experiences, while the purpose of development awards is to financially support art research and creation by allowing artists, artisans and craftspeople to carry out their projects that contribute to the evolution of their artistic process. Support is also offered to organizations to make resources available to the professional art community to foster the development of the discipline, promote Quebec artists, advance knowledge and raise public awareness.
Through the Politique d'integration des arts a I'architecture et a l'environnement, over 3500 pieces of art have been created by over 900 different artists. This policy makes it possible for large-scale pieces of art to be created and provides Quebec with artwork that is publicly accessible. These pieces of art are therefore a significant visual signature for many places.
The CALQ supports creation, experimentation and production in the arts and facilitates the dissemination and promotion of Quebec in Canada and abroad. The SODEC's mandate is to promote and support the development of cultural companies in Quebec and abroad in various sectors, including fine crafts and visual arts.
In 2014-2015, the CALQ presented awards to 378 artists and provided grants to 114 organizations in visual arts fine crafts and architectural research. In relation to fine crafts, the SODEC granted financial aid to 291 artisans, craftspeople or companies, and 33 companies benefited from the Programme de soutien au marche de l'art (art marketing support program) for exhibition or export purposes, and three associations or national groups received a grant. Lastly, 83 visual artists have benefited from a grant to acquire creation equipment and tools to develop marketing tools.
Since 1961, through the Politique d'integration des arts a I'architecture et a l'environnement, $CAD 142M has been allocated for the creation of over 3650 works of art. In 2012-2013, $CAD 8M was granted for the creation of 107 works of art, $CAD 9.5M led to the creation of 120 works of art in 2013-2014, and $CAD 10M was granted to create 134 works of art in 2014-2015.
For visual arts, fine crafts and architectural research, the CALQ granted awards totalling $CAD 3M in 2014-2015 to artists, and provided $CAD 7.4M in grants to organizations. The CALQ also provided $CAD 357K to support international activities for visual arts, fine crafts and architectural research projects.
The SODEC provided $CAD 6.1M in 2014-2015 for visual arts and fine crafts, specifically $CAD 1.6M for visual arts and $CAD 4.5M for fine crafts.
The amounts indicated were taken from the SODEC's and CALQ's 2014-2015 annual reports.
The Politique d'integration des arts a l'architecture et a l'environnement was assessed. In November 2010, the MCC made the results of the policy assessment public. This was the first time this exercise was carried out since the policy was adopted in 1961. The assessment covered the years that had passed since decree 955-96 (available online in French only), which provides a framework for the policy, was adopted in 1996.
The assessment of the policy touched on:
- the aspects included in the decree;
- the Fichier des artistes registration process;
- the promotion of the policy and appreciation of artwork to democratize modern art;
- the implementation structure for the policy;
- access to information and interdepartmental collaboration in ensuring the policy is applied by project.
Based on the assessment, the results of which are presented in the assessment report (available on line in French only) revealed that:
- 66% of the population surveyed consider that artwork improves citizen's lives;
- 40% of citizens indicated that they are familiar with at least one public art piece.
The assessment confirmed the merits of this government measure, which has provided the opportunity to consult a significant collective cultural heritage over the years. The policy has been an important lever in the modern creation of visual arts and fine crafts. These pieces of artwork can be found throughout Quebec and help promote and disseminate the work of established and emerging artists.
Among the actions suggested following the assessment of the policy, an overhaul of decree 955-96 is a main priority. Policy benchmarks are being reviewed and should be announced in spring 2016.