DonateGrowing Arts and Culture in York Region.

Artrepreneur Accelerator Program



Applications For Artrepreneur York Region Cohort 5 Now Open!

Deadline for Applications: EXTENDED to Thursday, February 15, 2018 by Midnight
Duration of Program: In Class: Tuesday Evenings March 27 – June 26, 2018

Expo: July 2018 TBA
Location: Georgina Arts Centre & Gallery

Plus: Exciting new $5,000 grant opportunity for Artrepreneur York Region Participants 


Access the info session presentation here!

Click here to apply for Artrepreneur York Region Cohort 5. 

About Artrepreneur

Artrepreneur is a program designed to equip independent artists, arts administrators and creative entrepreneurs with vital business skills needed for success across all arts disciplines and industries. Artists are entrepreneurs who contribute greatly to the social and economic well-being of their communities and, as such, require strategic training to grow in capacity. By incubating artists of all disciplines in one program, we foster collaboration and the sharing of ideas, tools, tips and best practices, resulting in a well-rounded understanding of what it takes to “make it” as as a creative entrepreneur.

This is the fifth cohort of Artrepreneur York Region. The program was created in 2015 and will have completed 10 cohorts in eight communities (Richmond Hill, Vaughan, Newmarket, Markham, Georgina, Barrie, Collingwood and Midland) by the end of 2018.

The Program

Artrepreneur York Region is comprised of weekly seminars, workshops, assignments and a final presentation and expo over a period of four months. It primarily serves York Region based artists, arts groups and arts businesses working in all artistic disciplines such as, though not limited to, visual arts, dance, theatre, film, music, jewellery, fasion, augmented reality and game design. Sessions are hands-on and will range in format from lectures to peer-to-peer workshops.

Throughout the program, faculty will guide fellows in the step-by-step development of a business plan by providing them with templates, learning modules and actionable assignments. By the end of the program, fellows will have a complete business plan and the opportunity to present their work in front of art industry leaders. Upon successful completion, fellows will also be awarded a certificate endorsed by all program partners.


  • Applicant is an independent artist, Director/President of an arts group/non-profit organization or the Founder/Owner of a creative business
  • All arts disciplines, design and those working at the itersection of art, technology and innovation
  • Actively practicing and/or in operation for one year or more
  • 18 years of age and older
  • Ability to commute and attend weekly sessions

Application Process & Submission Requirements

Applicants are required to submit all of the following:
  • Application form
  • Letter of intent outlining your art practice/business, why you want to participate in the program and what you hope to accomplish (maximum 1000 words)
  • CV or Resume
  • Bio (200 – 400 words)
  • Support Material List
  • Support Material – can be one or a combination of the following
  • 5 JPG images of recently completed work; 72 dpi, 1024 X 768 pixels, label image files with a number, your name and title of piece (ex. 01_JohnSmith_BirchTrees)
  • Samples of event/product/service flyers or brochures (JPG or PDF format), label files with a number, your name or the name of your organization and title (ex. 01_JaneDoe_DanceWorkshopFlyer)
  • Maximum 2 minute video (send link to online YouTube or Vimeo video)

The application process is exclusively online. It is mandatory that you input all of the above submission requirements in the online form with the exception of support material in the form of JPGs or PDFs, which can be emailed to Samantha Wainberg at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The subject line of your support material submission should read “Artrepreneur YR C5 Support Material.” Complete submissions are due before midnight on February 15. Click here to access the online application form!

Selection Process

All applications will be reviewed by a selection committee. The committee is comprised of representatives from partner organizations who are cultural administrators, local artists, educators and business advisors. A maximum of 30 applicants will be accepted for the program based on meeting eligibility criteria, full completion of application, ability to participate for the full duration of the program, artistic merit and business viability. 

Accepted applications will be required to pay a program fee

$135 for York Region Arts Council Members
$170 for General participants 

Click here to become a York Region Arts Council Member and receive discounted admission and other perks today! 

Notification of Results

Acceptance notifications will be issued by email on or phone by February 27, 2018. Due to the volume of submissions, only those accepted into the program will be contacted.


Weekly sessions will take place at the Georgina Arts Centre & Gallery, 149 High St, Sutton, ON L0E 1R0 from 6:00 to 9:00 pm. Location of the Expo is TBD.


Faculty will consist of small business consultants, York University AMPD faculty, ventureLAB Executives in Residence, as well as other subject matter expert guest lecturers.

Starter Company Plus Grant Opportunity

Eligible Artrepreneur participants have a new and unique opportunity to leverage in-class training hours towards additional mentorship and a $5,000 grant through Starter Company Plus.

Starter Company Plus is a program funded by the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Growth and delivered through small business enterprise centres across the Province. The program includes one-on-one guidance from a business advisor, mentoring from local entrepreneurs and training through business workshops; all of which are requirements to apply for the $5,000 grant.

Due to our partnership with the four small business centres in York Region (Vaughan, Markham, Richmond Hill and York), we are offering qualified Artrepreneur participants the ability to count their in-class hours towards the Starter Company Plus training requirement.

Expressions of interest will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis and decisions to move forward with grant submissions will be predominantly based on (1) Starter Company Plus program eligibility and (2) grant submission readiness as agreed upon by York Region Arts Council and small business enterprise staff.

Click here to read through the Starter Company Plus guidelines and application form.

Cohort 5 Program Partners

  • York Region Arts Council
  • Georgina Arts Centre & Gallery
  • York Small Business Enterprise Centre
  • Vaughan Business Enterprise Centre
  • Richmond Hill Small Business Enterprise Centre
  • Markham Small Business Centre
  • ventureLAB
  • York University, School of the Arts, Media, Performance and Design
  • Arts Society King
  • Markham Arts Council
  • WorkInCulture

Important Dates

Extended Application Deadline: Thursday, February 15, 2018 by midnight
Acceptance Notices: Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Program Start Date: Tuesday, March 27, 2018
Mid-Program Break: Tuesday, May 8, 2018
Last In-Class Session Date: Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Expo: Final Presentations & Graduation Ceremony: July 2018 (Date TBD)

Program At-A-Glance

  • March through June 2018
  • 3 hour seminar/workshop once per week (Tuesdays, 6:00 – 9:00 pm)
  • Sessions conducted by industry experts
  • Access to creative industry mentors
  • Learn the components of a business plan, marketing plan, financial management, intellectual property, presentation skills and more
  • Regular assignments culminating a complete business plan
  • Receive templates and helpful exercises
  • Final presentation to creative industry leaders
  • Certificate of completion


Please direct all inquiries to:

Samantha Wainberg
Executive Director, York Region Arts Council

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | 905-726-3278

We would like to acknowledge funding support from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, Ontario Arts Council and Regional Municipality of York.



York Region Arts Council, YRAC

1310 Kerrisdale Blvd., Unit 200
Newmarket, ON. L3Y 7B3

Phone: 905-726-3278
Fax: 905-726-2788