Applications are now closed for 2024/25.
The City of Ottawa Community Galleries Program is now accepting exhibition proposals from emerging and established artists, artist collectives, curators, and community arts organizations working in all media. Applications will be reviewed by a peer assessment committee and selected exhibitions will be presented at either Atrium Art Gallery, Trinity Art Gallery or Gallery 112 in 2024 or 2025. All applications will be considered for all galleries. A preference to exhibit at either gallery in either year may be indicated, however the Community Galleries Program will determine the final schedule and location of each successful exhibition.
Ottawa is built on un-ceded Anishinabe Algonquin territory. The peoples of the Anishinabe Algonquin Nation have lived on this territory for millennia. Their culture and presence have nurtured and continue to nurture this land. The City of Ottawa honours the peoples and land of the Anishinabe Algonquin Nation. The City of Ottawa honours all First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples and their valuable past and present contributions to this land.
About the Community Galleries Program
Since 2001, Community Galleries’ programming has been strengthened through the insights, directives and support of local artists and arts organizations towards public access and exposure to the visual arts throughout the City of Ottawa. The Community Galleries Program believes that arts-based engagement is part of the positive change that promotes the principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion efforts.
Exhibitions at Atrium Art Gallery, Trinity Art Gallery and Gallery 112 feature the work of emerging and established artists working in all media and include solo, group and curated exhibitions, exhibitions from the diplomatic sector, and circulating exhibitions from other institutions. All galleries present a combined total of approximately 13 exhibitions annually, each of which lasts approximately ten weeks. Annual programming consists of exhibit openings and artist tours.
Gallery staff are not onsite daily, therefore exhibitions must be self-sufficient and cannot require regular maintenance.
Participating Community Galleries
- Ben Franklin Place (atrium), 101 Centrepointe Drive
- Atrium Art Gallery floor plan [ PDF - 44.57 KB ]
- Shenkman Arts Centre (lower level), 245 Centrum Boulevard
- Salon A floor plan [ PDF - 148 KB ]
- Salon B floor plan [ PDF - 141 KB ]
- Central Archives (ground floor), 100 Tallwood Drive
- Gallery 112 floor plan [ PDF – 103 KB ]
Each Community Gallery offers exhibition opportunities to the artist through service delivery specific to the host facility. All galleries are wheelchair accessible, open daily, and admission is free. (Gallery 112: open Tuesday to Saturday.) Hours of operation are subject to change due to facility operations.
This call for proposals is open to emerging and established artists and curators working in all media.
- Applicants must reside within a 150 km radius of Ottawa.
- City of Ottawa employees or elected representatives are not eligible to apply.
- Applicants must have completed training in their artistic field (achieved through schooling, apprenticeship, mentorship or collaboration, or a combination thereof) and this includes individuals who are self-taught and demonstrate proficient experience.
- Applicants must be committed to their artistic activity, have a history of public presentation, can seek payment for their work, and are recognized by professionals working in the same discipline, industry, and/or tradition.
- Applicants who have exhibited at the Atrium Art Gallery, Trinity Art Gallery, or Gallery 112 within the last three consecutive years are not eligible to apply.
- Only one proposal per applicant will be considered and the first application received by the Community Galleries Program will be the one that is considered.
The City of Ottawa reserves the right to deny any application or rescind any decision at any time (e.g., works or acts containing themes of violence, profanity, and hate, or encouragement thereof).
The City of Ottawa encourages applications from individuals with lived experience and identity as a member of Indigenous, Black and other racialized communities, persons with disabilities, women and other equity-deserving groups. Applications from Anishinabe Algonquin Host Nation, First Nations, Inuit and Métis artists and curators are welcome and encouraged. The City of Ottawa recognizes both official languages as having the same rights, status and privileges.
Assessment criteria and process
All eligible applications are reviewed by a peer assessment committee based on the following criteria:
- artistic merit, originality and professionalism
- regional importance and innovation
- technical and physical feasibility
- cohesiveness of the artwork examples and the written proposal statement
- appropriateness and suitability of the proposal to the highly public nature of the exhibition space
The City of Ottawa Community Galleries are located within buildings that are designed as “people places” where the public is invited to freely visit the exhibition space unsupervised. The exhibitor, when requesting an exhibition, is asked to keep in mind that the Community Galleries may not be a suitable venue for exhibiting all forms of artwork.
Special consideration will be required for artworks that conflict with the pest management policy at Gallery 112 which does not allow food or beverages nor field cuttings, flowers, or plants of any kind in the gallery.
Peer assessment committee members first review eligible applications individually then meet to review them together. The composition of each committee aims to balance representation of artistic specialization, practice, style, and philosophy, as well as fair representation of official languages, gender, geographic areas, and culture-specific communities. Peer assessment committee members are chosen based on their knowledge and experience, fair and objective opinions, ability to articulate ideas, and ability to work in a team environment. Members of the committee change with every competition. City employees are responsible for the selection of peer assessment committee members. If you are interested in participating as a peer assessment committee member, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Installation, sales and equipment
Sales and equipment
- Direct sales of artwork by the artist are permitted in the Community Galleries’ exhibition spaces.
- The artist is responsible for the sales transaction, the pickup and/or delivery of any artwork sold. The artist will pay a 15% commission on all sales to support the Friends of the City of Ottawa Archives, the Young at Art fund or the ARTicipate Endowment fund.
- All pieces of artwork are to remain in the exhibition for the duration of the show.
- The City of Ottawa is not involved in the sale of exhibition artwork.
- City of Ottawa Community Galleries Program does not cover expenses related to travel, accommodation, per diems and the transportation of artwork(s).
- Complex installations of any kind requiring special equipment and regular monitoring are the sole responsibility of the artist.
- All artworks accepted for exhibition must be framed and/or presentable and ready for installation on a click rail hanging system. Display stands required for three-dimensional artworks that are outside the scope of gallery inventory must be arranged for and provided by the artist.
Artworks with electrical components
- Artworks that require electricity must be approved by an accredited certification or evaluation agency prior to being installed at Atrium Art Gallery, Trinity Art Gallery, or Gallery 112. The object(s) must have an official certification mark or label indicating that the product has been independently assessed for safety. A list of recognized certification marks and labels is available.
- For more information, visit the Electrical Safety Authority or call 1-877-ESA-SAFE (372-7233).
- Any costs associated with meeting the certification requirement are the sole responsibility of the artist.
- Applicants must provide documentation that their artwork(s) meets ESA standards (i.e. certification mark) in their proposal.
Deadline and notification
Applications are now closed for 2024/25.
Confirmation: Applicants will receive an email when the application has been received and processed. If not received within three weeks, please contact us for confirmation.
Notification: Applicants will receive an email with the peer assessment committee’s decisions within three months of the deadline date.
Results are final. Due to the volume of applications received for this competition, artistic feedback will not be provided. If your application is not successful, you are encouraged to try again!
Copyright and confidentiality
Copyright and moral rights
Copyright of artworks shall remain the property of the artist. Moral rights shall remain with the artist. The City of Ottawa will seek copyright permission to reproduce the images for non-profit publicity purposes.
Confidentiality of information
Administrators and peer assessment committee are required to treat both the content of submissions and the deliberations of the committee as confidential. Information provided by the applicant may be available to City of Ottawa staff, committees, and members of the peer assessment committee. Personal information contained therein shall be dealt with on a confidential basis pursuant to the Municipal Freedom and Protection Privacy Act.
Atrium Art Gallery and Trinity Art Gallery are operated by the City of Ottawa Community Galleries Program. Gallery 112 is operated by the City of Ottawa Community Galleries Program and the Central Archives.
Be sure to check out other ways to exhibit with the City!
Accessible formats and communication supports are available upon request. If you are unable to view documents or require alternative file formats, please complete an Accessible Documents Request Form.