Welcome to our Newest GAC Staff Members!

Guelph Arts Council is excited to welcome our newest staff members for winter/spring 2021. Elly Grant is our new Communications and Outreach Assistant and Michael Crha is our new Digital Strategies Assistant. Together, Elly and Michael will be playing a critical role in supporting Guelph Arts Council in launching a brand new online arts hub this coming spring/summer of 2021 for artists and cultural organizations in Guelph and Wellington County.

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Elly Grant (Left) and Michael Crha (Right). 

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Local Playwright Provides a Creative Online Outlet for Local Teens

Deanna Kruger is an award-winning professional playwright and Guelph Arts Council's 2020 Youth Opportunities recipient - an award intended to encourage programs that will initiate, enhance or expand opportunities for children and youth in Guelph and Wellington County to experience or become in engaged in the arts. This winter we followed up Kruger to ask her a few questions about her journey as a playwright, and how she plans on applying the award funds to launch her new and exciting online playwriting workshop series this coming March for teens ages 14-17.


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Local playwright Deanna Kruger and GAC Youth Opportunities Award recipient 

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Splinters & Fragments

Article by Lisa Browning


once upon a time
a daughter explains
out of the blue to me
u do the things u do
because u cannot
give birth to babies
it’s compensation
she explained
u create places
and things as wombs
for people to live in
while they get fixed
or ready to start over
& when she finished
making her comment
went back to reading
her book of homework
next day she said
it must be frustrating
to be a man like you


This was the poem that really pushed me to approach local activist Edward Pickersgill, well known in Guelph for his work with the homeless and marginalized, to publish his poetry. I had been asking him repeatedly, as had many others … but Ed, preferring to remain behind the scenes as much as possible, always politely declined.

Until the summer of 2020. “Okay,” he said, “let’s do it.”

And so splinters & fragments was born. This anthology contains 85 of Edward’s poems, all very raw and very real, like the one above. One Thousand Trees is all about empowerment, especially through the written word, so this project was a perfect fit! Editing and formatting services for this book were provided free of charge, and a GoFundMe campaign covered all but $200 of the cost of printing 500 copies. One hundred percent of the $20 sale price of each volume sold goes to support Ed’s efforts.

Ed and me
Lisa Browning (left) and Edward Pickersgill (right). Photo credit: Troy Bridgeman, GuelphToday.com

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Charity invites donations of previously owned art

Guelph, ON – January 25, 2021 – Guelph Arts Council is inviting people to donate original art for its annual Collector’s Dilemma fundraiser.

The auction moved online in 2020 and will go online again this year from May 6-20. It depends on donations of art from collectors for its success. The money raised goes to GAC to help support local artists and arts organizations.

Laurel McKellar, vice-president of GAC’s volunteer board of directors, explains how Collector’s Dilemma is unique: “This a different kind of fundraising auction because we don’t ask artists to donate work. We ask people who have art they purchased in the past and enjoyed, but no longer have space for. It could be a business that is changing up their office space, or a collector who is moving, downsizing or redecorating, or anyone who recently bought or received new art and needs space.” GAC welcomes donations of original works or numbered prints. Donors get a tax receipt for the full selling price of the donated artwork.

Laurel adds: “This is such a unique opportunity. It’s always fun to see what art treasures people have in their collections that are just waiting for a new home.”

Pandemic shutdowns have been especially hard on artists, musicians, performers, and arts organizations. GAC has been working to help them find new ways to reach their audiences and rebuild income. In 2021, GAC is building a new accessible and collaborative digital cultural hub for Guelph and Wellington County. It will help creative workers grow their sales and it will improve access to resources for a diverse community of artists. Funds raised at the Collector’s Dilemma auction will help support this work.

For more information on Collector’s Dilemma, or to offer art for donation please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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