Surrey Arts Organization: ROUND TABLE RESULTS


Prepared by City of Surrey Cultural Staff | On Saturday, June 1st 2019 the Arts Council of Surrey hosted a Roundtable discussion at the Newton Cultural Centre between Surrey Arts organizations and City of Surrey Cultural management. 43 local artists and representatives of arts organizations were invited to express their needs, barriers to their success, and to share ideas on how to individually and collectively address these issues. After a keynote address by Surrey’s Cultural Manager LIANE DAVISON the 70+ participants were divided into four breakout groups and asked to reflect on four questions.

These were: 1) What do organizations need to grow, professionalize, and achieve their creative goals? 2: What are the challenges and barriers that limit arts organizations’ programming and development? 3: What are the actions that arts groups could take to address their own needs and challenges, and 4: How can the City best support arts organizations?

Four central themes emerged from the group discussions: FUNDING [Lack of funding is a primary barrier to their work], SPACE [Space needs are a top priority], ORGANIZATION CAPACITY [Organizational capacity gaps are common barriers to organizational growth], and CONNECTIONS [Surrey’s arts sector can be strengthened by increased connection].

[READ ‘Round Table: Summary Chart’ HERE] | [READ ‘Round Table: Detailed Report’ HERE]

TAKING ACTION: What’s Next? 2019-2020 Planned Events

Prepared by City of Surrey Cultural Staff

Surrey Arts Roundtable – What’s Next
As part of the follow up to the Roundtable, we wanted to provide information about some specific and immediate steps, as well as some existing and upcoming projects and initiatives that respond to the needs expressed at the session:

GRANT WORKSHOP | October 19, 2019
The Arts Council of Surrey’s Work of Art Conference, taking place on October 19, 2019, will include a grant workshop. This will be presented in 2 parts: an overview of funding opportunities for artists through the Canada Council for the Arts and the BC Arts Council; and grant-writing tips and tools. Information about this event will be available on the Arts Council of Surrey’s website ( [ED NOTE: Additional ‘funding’ workshops are currently being planned for 2019 WOA]

BUDGET WORKSHOP | October 9, 2019
City staff will be offering a budget planning workshop on October 9, 2019. This workshop will provide an overview on budget processes, including developing, monitoring and reporting. For more information please contact

MARKETING 101 [Social Media]
The Arts Council of Surrey and City staff will work in partnership to present a Marketing 101 workshop in spring 2020 exploring social media marketing opportunities. Once dates and workshop details are finalized, we will provide an update.

City staff are working in collaboration with the Arts Council of Surrey to explore further professional development opportunities for 2020, including a session dedicated to board development strategies. We will also continue to inform Surrey’s arts and cultural community regarding upcoming training opportunities in the region through our ENewsletter. To sign up visit and scroll to the bottom of the page.

The Arts Council of Surrey will host a follow up Roundtable in June 2020 to continue the dialogue and provide a chance to network and connect.

The Crescent Beach Pop Up Gallery is available to Surrey-based artists as a community exhibition space. A call to artists will be sent out in late August f0r 2020 exhibitions. The Program is available to artist teams of 2 or more. For details or to be added to the call mailing list please contact [ED NOTE: See right hand column for exhibition app and ops at the ACS Gallery located in the Newton Cultural Centre]

The new Clayton Community Centre is scheduled to open in summer 2020. The multi-purpose facility, located at 7155 – 187A Street, will include art spaces along with a library, gym, fitness studio, community kitchen, meeting and program rooms and a daycare. Specifically, the art spaces will include the following amenities:

• A Performing Arts Studio (3,000 square feet) featuring sprung wood floors, mirrors, acoustic draperies, ballet barres, in-house theatrical lighting and sound. Support space for the Studio will include 2 small dressing rooms and a green room, as well as catering support space. The space will be ideal for rehearsals, recitals, community celebrations, dance performances and workshops;
• 4 Music studios (300 square feet) providing acoustically sound spaces for small rehearsals, music instruction, sound/video recordings and workshops;
• A large-scale Visual Arts Studio (3,000 square feet) and a Woodworking Studio (1,000 square feet) that can accommodate community art projects and art classes; and,
• A community hanging rail in the lobby to support a range of exhibitions

For more information about the art spaces in the Clayton Community Centre, please contact

The City of Surrey’s Culture Division is committed to work alongside the arts community to advance the recommendations outlined in the PRC 10-year plan [ACCESS HERE], to support the growth and capacity of local artists and art organizations, promote learning and engagement and foster community connections through the arts.

Thank you for your participation and we look forward to future opportunities for dialogue!

Surrey’s Cultural Division

Have A Comment On This Feature? Tell Us!


How Your ACS Is Meeting Your
4 ‘Needs’ As Identified At The 2019 Round Table Conference

Based on findings from the inaugural Round Table 2019 conference, the Arts Council of Surrey [ACS] is pleased to acknowledge we are on-target with our diverse offerings to our members and Surrey arts community at large. While we realizing there is always more we can provide, we take solace in knowing that what we have offered for the past 50 years has been addressing many current expectations from within the Surrey arts community. Based on the four themes/needs established at the Round Table [Funding, Space, Connections and Organizational Capacity] here is a brief look at what the ACS has done, is doing, and will be doing to address these needs in our creative community.

FUNDING: Grants & Sponsorships
To address the need for Funding, Group members can access our established ACS GRANTS PROGRAMME, as well as our SPONSORSHIP PROGRAMME available to all members throughout the year.

SPACE: Newton Cultural Centre
We are privileged to have our ACS HQ based in the multi-purpose arts complex known as the Newton Cultural Centre [NCC]. The ACS is pleased to make three distinct and affordable spaces available to Surrey’s arts community. Our BLACK THEATRE holds 100 persons and is perfect for conferences, stage productions or rehearsals [Groups booking this space include: The Vaudevillians, Classic Steps, Naked Stage, Sudnya Mulye and Nrityanjali Dance Academy’s, Peace Arch Chorus, and Street Kings Hip Hop Dance Troupe…to name only a few]. Our CONFERENCE/MEETING SPACE for 30-40 people is a regular for Groups like Surrey’s Arts West, as well as many local businesses, thanks to its spacious interior flooded with natural light. Our ACS GALLERY is a coveted exhibition space for the emerging and established Visual arts community. Applications for the 2020 exhibition season are now being accepted [

CONNECTIONS: Art Spot, Art Shop & Listings
Whether you are looking for Calls, Funding, or Patrons to buy your art or tickets – the ACS has you covered. Our ART SPOT Resource Centre has every link you can imagine to put your art career into high gear! Find National, Provincial, and Municipal links for all things ‘art’, as well as the most Comprehensive Monthly Art Listings available on-line or in print! Want to sell your art? Get more exposure? Simply send in your work for sale to our ART SHOP [see guidelines] and we will help generate patrons, credibility and exposure through our on-line gallery and social media strategies.

The ACS is striving to make ‘connections’ a priority to our arts community and members. We will continue to make the ART SHOP and ART SPOT the only connections you need to ‘make a living from your art’.

With our fifty plus years of experience, over 91 Group members and 115 Business members [as of Aug 2019], we are the arts organization to turn to if you require assistance in bringing structure and governance to your organization. Whether you require mentors, guest speakers, board members, consultants or just some advise – the ACS can facilitate meetings between you (or your group) and those who have learned through experience and were rewarded with success. Tell us your needs and we will endeavour to source a solution from our vast network of personal resources.

Based on the findings of the June 2019 Round Table, the ACS continues to work hard providing solutions for funding, space, connections and organizational. We hope this summary of ACS offerings is evidence that the ACS is the only one-stop-shop you need to make your art a profitable and viable career.

But there is more…please read the ‘ACTION PLAN: What’s Next!’ provided by the city’s Cultural Division on actions that are being put into place to further address the finding of the Roundtable 2019. We are very excited to work throughout 2019-2020 with the City’s cultural staff to create winning solutions to our collective goal to ‘Make Art – Make Money!