Southern Currents Artists Fees Policy
Southern Currents is dedicated to paying artists fees in exchange for screening their work. We recognize that artistic labour is deserving of more than exposure, applause or industry recognition. By paying artists and putting them first, we are supporting the media art ecosystem that we all share in and are responsible to care for.
Paying artists is about transforming opportunities for artists, galleries, funders and policy- makers alike. In removing the financial barriers faced by many artists, it will give publicly- funded galleries – and the public themselves – access to quality art which covers the spectrum of human experience.
It will bring value to the investment of all who fund the arts by encouraging and enabling diversity and equality of opportunity for all artists now and in the future. In doing so,
it will play a direct role in ensuring we retain our reputation here for supporting creative talent and delivering world-class art.
By working together to define and adopt practical steps and frameworks for good practice, we can safeguard and strengthen the symbiotic relationship visual artists have with publicly-funded institutions and with the communities and audiences they collectively serve.
Paying fees is important to us. We stand with the Canadian Artists Representation/Le Front Des Artistes Canadiens (CARFAC) who established and have been upholding a minimum fee schedule for artists since 1968. We stand with the Independent Media Arts Alliance who also advocate for the payment of artists with a similar minimum fee schedule.
We aim to not only meet the minimum fees that artists are deserving of and legally entitled to, but to pay fees well above these suggested rates when budgeting allows us.
Artists of colour need more access to financial support for their work. As artists and cultural workers ourselves, we understand the barriers that stand in the way of art being made and supported.
Southern Currents sees itself as a no-strings-attached access point to resources: access to a community screen, access to other artists to foster artistic growth and collaboration, visibility within a larger queer media art community and, as much as we can – financial support to allow artists to make work, support their day to day, care for themselves in art practice, etc. – artistic labour takes many forms.