Allowing Creativity to Shine

The Edmonton Artists’ Trust Fund provides financial support to artists in our city

Over the past 25 years, the Edmonton Artists’ Trust Fund (EATF) has contributed over $1 million to the arts economy, investing in more than 120 multimedia, literary, music, dance, film, theatre and visual artists in the community.

In 1997, the EATF was established by valued community supporters, John and Barbara Poole, along with Edmonton Community Foundation (ECF) and Clifford E. Lee Foundation.

The EATF recognizes an artist’s work and contribution to the community, and provides financial stability with $15,000 awarded to each recipient to renew, develop, create, or experiment with their art. The Edmonton Arts Council administers the fund.

Since 2017, when the Eldon and Anne Foote family fund began to directly support the EATF, the value and number of the awards has grown.

This past December, 20 artists were selected for the 2021 EATF awards, including Nasra Adem, Edmonton’s former youth poet laureate, Emily Chu, the community- engaged Chinese illustrator, and Maigan van der Giessen, an Edmonton-amiskwaciwâskahikan creative artist.

“Supporting the careers of artists like our 2021 recipients is foundational to the growth of our arts community, fostering an exciting ecology of creation and expression,” said Sanjay Shahani, executive director of the Edmonton Arts Council.

According to the Edmonton Arts Council and ECF, the funds are intended to offset living and working expenses, allowing the artists to devote themselves to artistic activities and projects. With less concern on their financial situations, EATF funds enable our artists to invest more time in their career enhancements and/or developments.

“Congratulations to this year’s recipients,” said Martin Garber-Conrad, CEO of Edmonton Community Foundation. “We look forward to watching these artists’ careers grow as they continue shaping our city through their creativity.”

This story comes from the Spring 2022 edition of Legacy in Action. Read the full magazine.