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A Fresh New Look and Online Space for GAC

It’s been a long time coming and, after a great deal of hard work, it is finally live – our new Guelph Arts Council (GAC) website at http://www.guelpharts.ca. A work-in-progress, the site will continue to grow to address the needs of our members and our arts and culture community.

The newly designed site will serve as the place to go for events, arts opportunities, showcasing of our artist members, creative spaces, advocacy and more. The site has a responsive design layout that, in addition to looking modern and uncluttered, meets AODA accessibility requirements.

“The GAC vision – to champion Guelph’s creative community – has been an integral piece in the design of the new site,” shares Cynthia Kinnunen, GAC board member. “That old site worked hard for ten years and had a lot of information on it but we heard from members repeatedly that they wanted a website that was easy to navigate and not cluttered. We also wanted to ensure that we’re building relevance and encouraging involvement of a younger demographic and demonstrating our support of all artistic disciplines.”

The newly designed guelpharts.ca will act as the organization’s main platform for sharing events, artist opportunities and updates pertaining to the arts community and GAC members. With an updated membership structure as well – making it very accessible to become a community member for $5, an artist member for $30 or organizational member for $50 – the overarching goal is to engage the broader community with the arts and to provide support to artists themselves.

Artist members specifically have the opportunity to profile themselves in an artist member directory, selecting up to six images to display and share links to a variety of online platforms, including YouTube, SoundCloud, Etsy and more. Social media links are also provided on profile pages.

Our member newsletter has now gone digital, too, to help maximize our limited resources, to be environmentally conscious, and to keep us as accessible as possible in an increasingly online world. Arts Blast, our new e-newsletter, will be emailed bi-weekly and provide highlights of selected activities in our arts community, sharing funding and volunteer opportunities, as well as linking to the events calendar.

We would like to extend huge thank you to the team at Digital Chaos, GAC board volunteers and staff for bringing the new guelpharts.ca to life! We welcome your feedback on the site and will continue to add content and features over time.

By Noelle Lalonde

12th Annual Art on the Street a resounding success

Michelle Purchase, printmaker, receiving her "Best of Show 2014" award.
Photo credit: Downtown Guelph Business Association

The arts came alive on the streets of downtown Guelph on Saturday, July 12. Close to 100 established and emerging artists showcased their talents in a range of disciplines in blacksmithing, pottery, paint, photography, textiles, sculpture and much more. It was the perfect opportunity to experience art, engage with artists and purchase art from such a vast artistic landscape.

The Children's Arts Festival, organized by the Children's Art Factory, at St. George's Square featured a collection of activities to inspire and engage young minds. The Play With Clay craft bus – a festival favourite – was onsite, as well as the Guelph Public Library, Guelph School of Art, and the Suzuki String School of Guelph. Sculptor Ben McCarl also unveiled his latest work, Ascending Spirit.

The mood of the day was made complete by a variety of wandering musicians, great food and, of course, some sunshine was ordered for good measure. Several awards were also handed out later in the day:

Best of Show: Michelle Purchase, Printmaking
Best Booth: Clavaux Designs, Millinery
Honourable Mention: Glenn Rivison, Kinetic Sculpture
People's Choice Award: Nancy Plummer, Driftwood and Papier Mache

Thank you to the teams from Downtown Guelph Business Association and Guelph Arts Council, as well as all of the volunteers involved, for the hard work in coordinating and facilitating this fantastic celebration of arts in Guelph.

By Noelle Lalonde

Overseas Arts/Cultural Tours

For the past 16 years, Guelph Arts Council has offered an amazing annual overseas spring arts and cultural tour for members and friends.  Past destinations have included a wide range of countries and regions mainly in Europe (France, Spain, Italy, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Austria, Hungary and Romania) but also North Africa (Tunisia) and Asia (Turkey). Highlights of these tours include fascinating history, wonderful art and architecture, great food and drink including specialties of the region and some wonderful stories offered by longtime tour guide, historian, lecturer, author, Jacques Pauwels, PhD. For 2015, the 17th annual tour will be a 14-day journey into Europe’s heartland between the Rivers Rhine and Meuse, including Alsace, Lorraine, Luxembourg, Belgium and a brief foray into Germany. Dates are April 7 to 20. Early registration is encouraged as most past tours have sold out before the end of the summer.

For more information or a detailed brochure, please contact Sally Wismer at 519-824-8131 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or Guelph Arts Council at 519-836-3280 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


View Europe's Heartland flyer

View Europe's Heartland brochure


We’re excited to announce a simpler membership structure that costs less to join and meets the needs of members and the community.

Instead of eight membership categories, you can now choose from three: general member, artist member, or organizational member.
For more details on membership categories, please see "Become a Member"



If you’re interested in the arts in Guelph but aren’t an artist or an arts organization, our new general membership is for you! For only $5, you can add your voice to support the arts and receive communications from the GAC.

ARTIST MEMBER (Individuals) - $30 (see below)



If you’re an artist or arts organization, either of these membership categories is for you. Both memberships include a profile in our Member Directory, and organizational members receive a discount for their members on GAC memberships!
Please note: Previously, membership prices incorporated a donation. For example, a general membership was $30. Included in that amount was a $25 charitable donation for which we would send you a tax receipt. The remaining $5 was the actual purchase of goods and services (i.e., membership benefits). We still need and appreciate your donations! You are invited to donate in any amount that suits you. Tax receipts will be issued for donations in the amount of $20 and above. Thank you for your ongoing support of arts in Guelph!
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