What is Guelph Arts Council?

If you haven’t heard of Guelph Arts Council, or you have, but you’re not really sure what it is or does, here’s a primer.

First, there’s no “council” like a city council or student council. There are three hard-working staff: one full-time executive director, and two part-time managers of programs and operations. Sometimes there is also a co-op student and/or intern. There are also lots of volunteers doing everything from helping with Art on the Street to leading historical walking tours.

Because GAC is a charity, there is also a volunteer board of directors. Board members also serve on hands-on committees including fundraising, communications, and governance. Non-board members also volunteer on these committees -- a great way to get involved with GAC. (Hint, hint.)


Potters wheel collaboration

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Art on the (Virtual) Street 2021 Announced

Guelph, ON – February 3, 2021 – The 19th annual Art on the Street, Guelph’s flagship art sale and exhibition, will be hosted online by Guelph Arts Council and the Downtown Guelph Business Association from Saturday, June 19 to Saturday, July 3, 2021. Like 2020’s popular online event, Art on the (Virtual) Street will showcase local talent and allow art lovers to browse select works and purchase their favourites online. The event may return to the street later in 2021, if public health guidelines for COVID-19 safety permit.

Guelph Arts Council will accept applications from artists within Guelph and Wellington County from Thursday February 11 until Thursday March 25. Applications submitted by this deadline will be juried first for the virtual event and, if applicable, a second time for the in-person event. There is no fee to take part in the virtual event and applicants must have the ability to accept online payment and offer delivery or curbside pick-up. Booth pricing details for the in-person event, if held, will be announced. Admission notifications will go out on or before Thursday, April 8. The detailed artist guidelines and application form will be posted at guelpharts.ca.

When the application process opens, interested artists are invited to review the application guidelines and to contact Guelph Arts Council with inquiries at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 519-836-3280. Until further notice, our office at 42 Carden St. is closed and staff are working remotely. Phone messages will be returned within two business days.

Art on the Street 2021 will spotlight multi-disciplinary, diverse talent within the Guelph-Wellington arts community. GAC and the DGBA welcome applications from painters, potters, blacksmiths, jewellers, glass blowers, wood carvers, textile artists, photographers, and more. We strive to be inclusive of BIPOC, LGBTQ2S+, newcomer, youth, low-income, and Deaf artists, and artists with disabilities, and extend a special invitation to all to apply. If artists face barriers to applying or participating in Art on the Street, please let us know at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 519-836-3280. Click here to apply.

Art on the (Virtual) Street sponsorship opportunities are available. Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 519-836-3280 for details and pricing.

Visit guelpharts.ca or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram for event updates.

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Monthly Musical Member: Nicolette & The Nobodies

Each month we’ll feature a video from one of Guelph’s musical community members. If you’re a musician and have a video you’d like us to feature, please send a YouTube link our way along with a short bio.

Happy New Year! We can still say that, right? It's our first video of the year, and we are very pleased to present one from Nicolette & The Nobodies! This one in particular includes Nicolette with lowercase nobody, but we’re sure everybody will want to hear it, and see all the fun boots in the video.

Our friends at Hillside Festival are once again presenting their wonderful “Girls With Guitars” program during Hillside Inside next month, and Nicolette (currently billed sans anybody, but will perhaps arrive with Nobodies) is one of featured performers. Hillside never disappoints, and we’re sure the community is thrilled that the event will be back in some way again this year.

For those who love music that has them swaying between the past and the present, reminding them of days gone by while remaining relevant in the moment, you will surely enjoy “Back and Forth” from Nicolette & The Nobodies.

Nicolette & The Nobodies

Nicolette & The Nobodies is heavily influenced by the songs and stage presence of 60's and 70's country starlets but retains the gritty rough edges of outlaw country. They dress for the occasion and bring set of upbeat sad songs and ballads of lonely hearts.

You can learn more about Nicolette & The Nobodies from their website, Facebook, Instagram and Bandcamp. The wonderful people at Bandcamp have continued foregoing their share of artist sales on the first Friday of the month in 2021, so find your way to your favourite Guelph artists’ Bandcamp pages on February 5th to purchase their music and make sure your financial support — in this case — goes directly to Nobodies.

We look forward to bringing a lot of wonderful music to your ears in 2021, and hope you'll really enjoy the kickoff today with Nicolette & The Nobodies’ “Back and Forth”.

#ChangesStartsNow – Black Heritage Month February 2021

Press release submitted by Guelph Black Heritage Society

The Guelph Black Heritage Society (GBHS), in collaboration with the University of Guelph’s Cultural Diversity Office and the Guelph Black Student’s Association, has announced it will recognize February 2021 as Black “Heritage” Month.

For over 25 years, February has been referred to as Black History Month in Canada, following a motion introduced by the Honourable Jean Augustine – the first Black Canadian woman elected to Parliament. It is the month in which we celebrate the contributions that Black historical figures have made to our society. Names like Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, and Martin Luther King Jr. – and more recently, Viola Desmond – are well engrained in our minds. Celebrating the past has always been the focal point of Black History Month. In 2021, the Guelph Black Heritage Society and its partners have decided to do things a little differently.

GBHS president Denise Francis proposed the change to Black “Heritage” Month, and the Board of Directors, collaborators and partners enthusiastically supported this initiative. This month will commemorate past and present accomplishments within the Black community and set sights on our bright future ahead. While we will continue to acknowledge the resilience and bravery of those who came before us, we must recognize that Black history and experiences are much more than the narrative of slavery.

During Black “Heritage” Month 2021, the GBHS will feature its #ChangeStartsNow initiative, providing virtual educational programming on Black heritage and culture as well as relevant resources on diversity, discrimination and anti-racism. The GBHS calls on the community to honour our past, celebrate today, and look toward the future.

The following FREE online events will be presented in during Black Heritage:

AFTERSHOCK Art Show – Monday February 1, 2021 @ 6pm Aftershock is a mixed media art installation showcasing the creations of aspiring young artists in Guelph and the surrounding area. The Aftershock opening ceremony will feature a panel/Q&A discussion with the featured artists. The art show will be displayed throughout the month via the online. To register for the event: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/aftershock-art-display-tickets-136301006981

Laura Mae Lindo
Dr. Laura Mae Lindo. Image provided by GBHS

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