From the conference's homepage: Artist-Run Centres and Collectives Conference is a Canadian organization that represents – by way of the regional associations that form its membership – approximately 150 artist-run centres in cities and towns across the country.
Artist-run Centres (ARCs) are non-profit organizations, run by and for artists, supporting new and innovative practices in the arts. With a rich history that spans over thirty years, ARCs have had a significant impact on the cultural ecology in Canada and around the world. Generally, these centres exhibit contemporary art which parallels the larger public institutions and private commercial galleries – offering an alternative to artists in determining how to represent their work. Most of Canada’s best known and internationally recognized contemporary artists, curators and cultural practitioners have come out of the artist-run centre movement. [definition taken on the Pacific Association of Artist-Run Centres’ website, www.paarc.ca]
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