TMAC aspires to be a centre for excellence for the media arts that takes an accessible approach to the advancement of culture and technology.
In the heart of Toronto’s Art and Design District, TMAC is creating a diverse and collaborative environment where anyone can engage meaningfully with art and technology. TMAC integrates creation, production, presentation, education, conservation and dissemination practices and with a focus on community building and inclusivity.
With year-round arts and cultural programming, open lab studios, equipment libraries, coworking and social areas, we provide the tools, space and freedom to play with art, media and new technologies–including film, videogames, audio, video, robotics, electronics and more.
TMAC grew out of grassroots community support and in response to a need for an accessible and affordable centre dedicated to media art and technology.
The idea for TMAC was first conceptualized in 2003 after almost 15 years of organizing. After an initial feasibility study, we incorporated in 2011 and attained charitable status in 2013. Today, TMAC has organically grown into an integrated collaborative organization supporting its members, the West Queen West community, and all of Toronto's media artists and artist-run centres.
The Toronto Media Arts Centre includes all three streams of contemporary media art practices: production, exhibition and distribution. Media art encompasses artworks that are created and displayed using time-based technologies including audio, video, film, gaming, digital, robotics, photography, interactive, online, electronics, radio and sound.
Our sector is extremely well developed in Toronto, with over 40 organizations serving and supporting a broad community of makers. We will establish a contemporary facility that will increase the visibility and accessibility of the media arts by creating a unique destination. The centre will be a landmark art facility dedicated to audience engagement, education, production and post-production, distribution, archiving and preservation, artistic residencies and a full range of arts presentation. TMAC is a new model for collaboration, one we’ve been working hard to establish for decades and that is extremely rare in Canada and the world.
The goal of our collaboration is to:
- Plan for and build an organization that exists for the benefit of the community in which TMAC is situated
- Sustain and grow the diverse and autonomous work of its members
- Create a framework for positive and enduring change in the Toronto media arts landscape
Building on the founding vision of TMAC as a “cluster” of independent member organizations, we leverage each other’s deep experience planning, structuring and producing new art works for joint programming opportunities that would not have been possible before we came together as TMAC. At the same time, we create efficiencies through shared facilities, staffing, and infrastructure—reducing each organization’s precarity and allowing Member resources to flow to new initiatives and artists rather than administrative overhead and commercial rents.
The collaborative governance model is the natural evolution of TMAC, and the articulation of an adaptive structure that will serve TMAC now and in the years ahead.
The position TMAC strives to take within the community is that of a collaborator, valuing the input of all stakeholders working towards the goal of broad understanding and a sustainable future for the organizations and artists at the cutting edge of technoculture, art, and interactive media.
We strive to build relationships and trust between member organizations, artists, the public, and other stakeholders by focusing on our strengths, encouraging deep understanding, centering co-creation and iterating over our best and most ambitious ideas.
All of TMAC’s member organizations have worked cooperatively for many years, and are now moving towards roles that expound upon these experiences and allow us to build something bigger—a true platform for our transformative work.