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Artrepreneur Barrie

Artrepreneur is a program designed to equip independent artists, arts administrators and creative entrepreneurs with vital business skills needed for success across all arts disciplines and industries.

Artists are entrepreneurs who contribute greatly to the social and economic well-being of their communities and, as such, require strategic training to grow in capacity.  By incubating creatives working across all disciplines in one program, we foster collaboration and the sharing of ideas, tools, tips and best practices, resulting in a well-rounded understanding of what it takes to “make it” as a creative entrepreneur.

The program was created by the York Region Arts Council and piloted in Richmond Hill in 2015.  Its resounding success lead to the expansion of the program in the City of Barrie with the first cohort on January 12, 2016.

ARTREPRENEUR EXPO – April 26th, Mady Centre, 6:30-9:00pm

This event will highlight artists and arts organizations advancing from Barrie’s first ever Artrepreneur program; a 15-week business development accelerator for creative entrepreneurs.  Program participants will present their creative ventures and network with arts and culture industry professionals in attendance.  This is a great opportunity for interested applicants to learn more about the program.


The Program

Artrepreneur Barrie is comprised of weekly seminars and workshops, assignments, mentorships and a final presentation and expo over a 15-week period.  It primarily serves Barrie and Simcoe County based artists, arts groups and arts businesses working in all creative disciplines such as, though not limited to, visual arts, dance, theatre, film, music, jewelry, fashion, graphic design, gaming and augmented reality.  Sessions are hands-on and will range in format from lectures to peer-to-peer workshops.

Throughout the program, faculty will guide fellows in the step-by-step development of a business plan by providing them with templates, learning modules and actionable assignments.  By the end of the program, fellows will have a complete business plan and the opportunity to present their work in front of industry leaders.  Upon successful completion, fellows will also be awarded a certificate endorsed by all program partners.


  • Applicant is an independent artist, Director/President of an arts group/non-profit organization or the Founder/Owner of a creative business
  • All arts disciplines, design and those working at the intersection of art, technology & innovation
  • Actively practicing and/or in operation for two consecutive years or more
  • 18 years of age or older
  • Ability to commute and attend weekly sessions

Submission Requirements

Applicants are required to submit all of the following:

  • Application form
  • Letter of intent outlining your art practice/business, why you want to participate in the program and what you hope to accomplish (maximum 1000 words)
  • CV or Resume
  • Bio (200 – 400 words)
  • Support material – can be one or a combination of the following
  • 5 JPG images of recently completed work; 72 dpi, 1024 X 768 pixels, label image files with a number, your name and title of piece (ex. 01_JohnSmith_BirchTrees)
  • Samples of event/product/service flyers or brochures (JPG or PDF format), label files with a number, your name or the name of your organization and title (ex. 01_JaneDoe_DanceWorkshopFlyer)
  • Maximum 2 minute video (send link to online YouTube or Vimeo video)
  • Support material list

Selection Process

All applications will be reviewed by a selection committee.  The committee is comprised of representatives from partner organizations who are cultural administrators, local artists, educators and business advisors.  A maximum of 30 applicants will be accepted for the program based on meeting eligibility criteria, full completion of application, ability to participate for the full duration of the program, artistic merit and business viability.  Accepted applications will be required to pay a program fee of $100.


Weekly sessions will take place at Georgian College, 1 Georgian Drive. The Artrepreneur Expo location will be determined at a later date.

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