PIVOT: Black Artist Resource Fund - Nia Centre for the Arts
For Community

PIVOT: Black Artist Resource Fund

Adapt to your artistic practice


January 7 - February 8, 2021

Application Deadline: February 7

Apply Today


PIVOT is a Black Artist Resource Fund developed by Nia Centre for the Arts through funding received from the Government of Ontario. This initiative aims to address the needs of Black artists in Ontario as they pivot, and find ways to adapt to the new realities and demands of creating and showcasing work during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Nia Centre understands that the COVID-19 pandemic has made it particularly difficult for Black artists to create work, learn new skills, and showcase their work. Through this initiative, Nia Centre will allocate resources to individual artists living within Ontario to ensure that Black artists are better positioned for creative success in 2021.

Applications for PIVOT have now closed.

These are difficult times and the response to PIVOT reflects that. We have received an overwhelming number of applications, and the requests for support greatly exceed the funding we currently have from the Government of Ontario. 

We understand that the need in our community is both great and urgent. Currently, we are looking at other opportunities to secure additional funding and resources so that we can support more artists. When we are able to do so, please rest assured that we will reach out. Applications are being reviewed by Nia Centre staff and a selection committee.

Given the volume of applications received, we anticipate applicants (both successful and unsuccessful), will be notified by Monday, March 23. We kindly ask that you do not send inquiries about your application until then. We will reach out if the timelines change, and you can also continue to check this page for updates.


To apply to the PIVOT, applicants must meet all of the below criteria:

  • Self-identify as an Afro-Diasporic/Black artist
  • Currently live within the province of Ontario
  • Be 16 years of age or older


PIVOT provide resources in 5 main areas:

1. Professional Development (up to $1000)

For registration fees for professional development activities. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • Classes/Courses
  • Workshops/Tutorials
  • Residencies
  • Mentorship
  • Accessibility supports to pursue professional development, including ASL interpretation
  • Any opportunity to learn a skill or gain knowledge to support your artistic practice

Note, preference will be given to learning opportunities taking place during the 2021 calendar year. Preference will also be given to learning opportunities that directly support the applicant in pivoting and/or better adapting to new realities of the COVID-19 pandemic.

2. Equipment / Supplies / Materials – Purchase (up to $500) 

For the purchase of equipment, supplies, materials for the development of creation/development of artwork. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • Art-making materials (paint, clay, beads, brushes, canvas, etc.)
  • Audio/visual equipment (tripods, lights, cables, lenses, microphones, etc.)
  • Backdrops
  • Mounts
  • Easels
  • Small printers
3. Equipment / Supplies / Materials – Rental (up to $500)

For the rental of equipment for the creation of new or existing work. Examples include, but are not limited to the rental of:

  • Audio/visual equipment (mixers, lights, microphones, cables, etc.)
  • Studio space/studio rentals
  • Rehearsal space
  • Printers
  • Printmaking Materials
4. Software Purchase/License (up to $500)

For the purchase or licensing of software. Examples include, but not limited to:

  • Creation software (i.e. Adobe Creative Suite)
  • Microsoft Office
  • Web development software/plugins
  • Domain registration/Website hosting
5. Professional/Technical Fees (up to $1000)

For the hiring of professionals/consultants, including web developers, business consultants, mentors, advisors, etc.

Applicants to PIVOT may apply for up to $1,000 in any combination of resource areas. For example, an applicant may request $400 in professional development support, $100 in technician fees, and $500 in equipment purchase. The applicant should make clear why they are requesting the resources, and how they anticipate the resources will support them in better adapting their artistic practices to the new realities of COVID-19. In order to support as many applicants as possible through this initiative, successful applicants may not be approved for all funding areas requested. Through the application, applicants will be able to list their funding requests in the order of most needed. This will support Nia Centre in meeting the most critical needs of applicants first.

All applications will be reviewed and assessed by Nia Centre. Resources will be purchased/acquired by Nia Centre staff, then sent/allocated directly to successful applicants. In instances where Nia Centre cannot purchase/acquire resources (for example, in the case of registration fees, payments made to personnel, rentals, etc.) Nia Centre will work with each applicant to best administer these resources. 

Successful applicants may be requested to provide receipts, invoices, registration details, or similar proof of purchase 3 months after receipt of resources/funds, as well as fill out an Impact Survey.


For the purposes of this initiative, Nia Centre is identifying the following self-identified priority groups. Due to historical and existing barriers faced by the following groups, preference will be given to applicants who self-identify as belonging to one or more of the following groups:

  • Afro-Indigenous artists
  • Artists with disabilities/disability identifying artists
  • Deaf artists
  • Artists living with mental health conditions
  • 2SLGBTQ+ artists

Applicants with disabilities may request alternative application methods or accommodation throughout the application process. Requests can be made directly to Nia Centre via email, at info@niacentre.org. 

Applications will open Thursday, January 7, and close Sunday, February 7, 11:59:59pm. Due to the expedited nature of this initiative, applications will not be accepted past the deadline. All applicants will be notified of the status of their application by Monday, March 1. 

PIVOT: Black Artist Resource Fund is made possible through funding from the Government of Ontario
Would you like to see more about For Community ?
Go for-community Page

See Other Events

Card image cap Learn More

The Pull Up: Summer Series

July 8 - August 31, 2024
10:00AM - 5:00PM
524 Oakwood Ave, Toronto, ON M6E 2X1

Spend the summer creating with Nia Centre

Copyright © 2024 Nia Centre for the Arts All Right Reserved.