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The 59th Toronto Outdoor Art Fair reinvents itself as the ‘Toronto Online Art Fair’ to bolster artist careers 

May 14, 2020

For immediate release.

From July 2–12, 2020, Canada’s largest and oldest contemporary outdoor art fair, Toronto Outdoor Art Fair (TOAF), will continue to bring artists and the public together to celebrate and sell artwork through their new online platform. 

Aptly renamed as Toronto Online Art Fair for this year, TOAF has swiftly pivoted to provide an accessible ecommerce solution for their participating artists to ensure they’re able to showcase and sell their work on TOAF’s website (www.torontooutdoor.art). Long term visitors and collectors can continue to support their favourite seasoned artists and discover inspiring new talent by engaging with artists online and purchase artworks effortlessly. 

“The online fair is a brilliant idea! Not only does it allow us to still get our work out there and make new friends and clients, it levels the playing field for disability-identified artists,” says Steve Kean, a participating artist since 2016. “Community is important and even though we can’t be together on the square this summer, we need to stay connected to one another.”

This online edition will include key exciting incentives for artists and the public such as TOAF’s coveted Awards Program of $40,000 in cash awards and a new Gift of Art program, Art Talks, Art Tours, and virtual events with programming partners at The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery and StreetARToronto. 

As a charitable nonprofit, TOAF exists solely to connect visual artists and contemporary makers with arts-lovers and buyers, celebrate artists’ entrepreneurial spirit, make their career progression financially viable, and enable discovery and recognition opportunities. 

The cancellation of exhibition opportunities this season due to the current public health crisis has had a devastating financial impact on artist careers as well as small nonprofits such as TOAF. Moira Ness, the winner of the TOAF Catherine Bratty Best of Fair Award in 2018, summarizes the struggles of independent artists during these challenging times and the importance of platforms such as TOAF to their careers in this journal for CBC

“Every year, 130,000 avid art lovers and collectors gather at Nathan Phillips Square to support TOAF artists by spending $2 million dollars on art purchases. While we will miss our annual gathering in-person, we are determined to join forces with our loyal supporters and our long-term visitors to reassure our artists of the vitality and sustainability of their careers. We must collectively rise to the occasion and make the Toronto Online Art Fair a stellar financial success for our artists.”  - Anahita Azrahimi, Executive & Creative Director

 

About Toronto Outdoor Art Fair

Toronto Outdoor Art Fair is Canada’s leading contemporary outdoor art fair. Founded in 1961, Toronto Outdoor Art Fair was established to put contemporary visual artists and makers in direct contact with the public and to nurture artistic excellence and artists’ entrepreneurial spirit. This free public event has historically showcased works by over 360 contemporary visual artists and makers, ranging in medium from painting, photography, and mixed media to jewellery and ceramics, and has attracted 130,000 visitors each year to Nathan Phillips Square.

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