How many projects does PIA fund in a year?

It varies depending on what kind of projects come forward. Refer to PIA’s project database to see what has been funded in the past. 

How does PIA determine who to fund?

There are two prerequisites. A potential partner art organization must have Canadian charitable status and the proposal must be a contemporary art project. For projects involving exhibitions a curator with relevant experience must be attached, and there must be an education opportunity for PIA members and the general public. PIA aims to invest in a mix of different types of projects, from collaborating with grassroots art collectives to established art institutions. PIA is interested in projects which include a permanent record or legacy such as a book or digital platform. 

Does PIA give grants to artists?

Not directly. For exhibitions PIA gives funds to charitable art organizations who have developed a specific project with a curator. The curator and potential partner conceptualize the project based on the artist or artists they want to work with.

Why does an organization need a registered charitable number to be eligible for funding?

As a registered charity PIA follows Canada’s tax rules. PIA is required by the Canada Revenue Agency to grant only to registered charities.

What are acceptable charitable organizations/registered charities?

Art museums, art galleries and art institutions, all of which must have a Canadian registered charitable number.

What is the maximum amount of funding PIA can give to a project?

PIA does not have a specific limit, but historically our funding contributions range from $5,000 to $40,000.

Are there certain types of projects PIA prefers to fund?

PIA gravitates towards challenging projects that advance contemporary art. Some projects may have difficulty in achieving full funding which creates an opportunity for PIA to fill a financial gap. While PIA strives to initiate new partnerships it continues to support past partners who are known for their expertise and embrace curatorial excellence. Cross pollination is also of value to PIA. Projects that expose Canadian artists to international curators also contribute to the dialogue of contemporary art.

Are there certain types of projects PIA does not fund?

PIA does not fund commercial projects. Also ineligible: exhibition projects without a curator, and projects where contemporary art is not the primary focus.

How does PIA fund its projects?

Member donations are the primary source of PIA’s funds to invest in art projects. Every PIA member contributes through annual membership fees. In addition, members donate during an annual individual donor campaign. Ticket sales and corporate sponsorship for PIA fundraising events also add to PIA’s pool of funds for projects – 75 per cent of all money raised goes directly to project funding

When is the best time of year to apply for funding?

PIA’s annual budget begins in January. PIA accepts, but does not review, applications in June, July and August. If a project timeline is short it is recommended that applicants email Project Development before applying to determine if there is any budget remaining.

Has PIA funded an organization more than once?

Yes, many. Over time PIA has recommitted to organizations with a history of curatorial excellence. To see PIA’s funding history go to the project database

What role does PIA expect to play once it invests in a project?

Successful partners receive a letter of agreement outlining the need for an education component and recognition for PIA. PIA works with the organization to develop those elements.

If an application is rejected could it be accepted if it is revised?

Once PIA’s project development committee has voted decisions are final. For future projects any rejected potential partner is advised to email Project Development for a dialogue and advice before applying again. Sometimes projects are rejected because PIA’s budget has been spent for the year.

What information needs to be included in the budget?

To ensure a project is viable PIA would like to see a full project budget. That includes detailing other sources of income and all expenses.

How confidential is the information we send to PIA?

There are strict confidentiality requirements for the members of PIA’s project development committee and management committee. Application information will not be shared outside of those two committees.