Monday, March 15, 2010

Year 2006. How Did the Big Cities Rate for their Number of Artists?

Here are some interesting numbers.

1. Vancouver ranks first among all Canadian cities for concentratin of artits with 2.4% of its population.
2. Victoria 2.0%
3. Montreal 1.9%
4.North Vancouver 1.8%
5. Toronto 1.6%
6.Verdun, St. John's. 1.3%
7 Sanich. 1.2%
8.New Westminster. 1.2%
10 Richmond, Regina,Waterloo,Ottawa,Quebec City,Halifax. 1.0%

Toronto reported the highest level of earnings for artists with $34,100


1. The average earnings of artists are very low.
2. A typical artist in Canada earns less than half the typical earnings of all Canadian workers.
3. Artists’ earnings decreased, even before the current recession.
4. There are more female than male artists, yet women artists earn much less than men.
5. Aboriginal and visible minority artists have particularly low earnings.
6. Economic returns to higher education are much lower for artists than for other workers.
7. Many artists are self-employed.
8. There are relatively few opportunities for full-time work in the arts.
9. There has been substantial growth in the number of artists since 1971, but the rate of growth is decreasing.
10. Artists, as a group, are becoming more diverse, older and better educated

Its important to note that the artistic community consistets of actors, crafts artistans, conductors, composers and arrangers,circus performers, puppateers,painters, sculptors and visual artists,writers, producers, directors, and dancers.

Taken by itself...visual artists who earn their living in the arts, are very few in number.

Click here to see source.


  1. That our government still finds it necessary to cut funding is just another nail in the coffin of an already dieing industry. Would CPR even help?

    As an aside it's interesting to note the high percentage of artists on the West coast, especially if you look at the area as a whole (Vancouver, North Vancouver, New Westminster...). Would these higher numbers mean artists are more successful at earning a living in these locations?

  2. hi Roberta.
    thanks for commenting on the FA blog today.
    Good question by the way. It would be easy to wonder if BC culture isn't more condusive to artistic expression. There may be some truth in this.

    But in fairness to the Greater Toronto Region, their lower numbers could be due to economics.

    The GTA has the highest immigrant population in all of Canada. The cultural mosaaic of Toronto has completely changed in the last 40 years.

    That isn't to say that immigrants are not into the arts.

    Arts are the privilege of an economically secure society. If we look at the native cultures, the tribes which worried least about food, were also the most artistically advanced.

    I think that we may find, that arts in the GTA are taking a back seat to struggle for financial security.

    Further comments to this discussion are welcomed.


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