Artists in the Library

Artists in the Library is an artist residency program intended to create new collaborative opportunities for Toronto artists and increase arts access in underserved communities by animating libraries in Etobicoke, North York and Scarborough. Resident artists will deliver free public arts programming, such as community-engaged arts programs, visual and media arts installations and exhibitions, workshops, artist-talks and other public arts activities.

The Artists in the Library program was created in 2014 as a partnership between Toronto Arts Council and Toronto Public Library. Funding for this program is provided by the City of Toronto through Toronto Arts Council.

2020 Artists in the Library

  • Ana Gaberiela Lopez Castro

    photo of Ana Gaberiela Lopez Castro

    Ana Gabriela Lopez Castro is a Mexican visual artist based in Toronto. Her artistic formation started in the areas of photography, printmaking and alebrijes in 1999. She established herself in Toronto in 2008 and is an active exponent of Mexican art and culture throughout the presentation of her artistic and handcrafted work known as the Alebrijes. She has exhibited widely in Canada and Mexico from 2000 to the present; and since 2013 has collaborated as leading artist with Muse Arts. Ana Gabriela has a bachelor's degree in visual arts from the Faculty of Arts and Design at UNAM from Mexico City and Advanced Diploma in Graphic Design from Centennial College.

    "My body of work is inspired by Mexican folk art, colourful, diverse and rich. Through my work, I want to show that by learning about other cultures we can create communities inspired by each other, also the diverse mediums I use shows the different possibilities to create work."

    IG: AnaGaby LopezC


    Fantastical Creatures Alebrijes Workshop with Ana Gabriela Lopez Castro

  • Mania Elendari

    photo of Mania Elendari

    Mania Elendari runs workshops that use therapeutic art tools to psychosocially support women and youth who have suffered from war trauma and displacements. In her work at CultureLink in Toronto, Mania runs a Drama for Trauma workshop with Syrian newcomer women, where women worked together as groups to practice writing scenarios, acting, and performing in front of public audiences at the end of the training. She has run several interactive theatres with Syrian refugee women in Lebanon and internally displaced women, who fled their hometown due to violence, in Syria. Mania had been trained the War Child organization in Lebanon to work as facilitator of a psychosocial support workshops. Mania has run several programs like “IDEAL” and “BIG DEAL” with Syrian displaced youth and children using theatre, painting, games, and handcraft for psychosocial support.

  • Alex D./ Fresh Cut Paper Studio

    image for Alex D./ Fresh Cut Paper Studio

    Alex D. (fresh cut paper studio) is a Toronto-based, francophone paper artist and arts educator who combines ancient paper sculpting techniques and modern design to create beautiful paper works. She takes great care in designing, cutting, and shaping her hyperrealistic paper art into dynamic paper props, large scale paper installations, and custom pieces for private collections. Alex also delivers paper arts programming in schools and libraries, in both English and French.

    "The versatility of paper and its seemingly limitless creative possibilities inspire me. The approachability of this deceptively simple medium aligns well with my goal to make art more accessible, and foster art participation opportunities for people of all ages and skill levels. I’m pleased to have the opportunity to offer an online workshop series as part of the Artists in the Library program. I am deeply committed to the promotion of creativity as a component of self-care, especially during these challenging times. I’m also fascinated by the universal role paper plays in our lives, as a medium that inspires, informs, and celebrates us. Through the Artists in the Library program, I will explore this concept in greater detail, with the creation of a 12-piece exhibit called Paper Trail: Portrait of a Life in 12 Sheets, which will highlight our connection to paper throughout our major life stages. To view the exhibit and track my progress on Instagram, visit #papertrailresidency."

    Instagram: @freshcutpaperstudio

2021 Artists in the Library

(coming soon)

How to Apply

The Artists in the Library program provides funding with grants of $10,000 to professional artists, arts organizations and collectives working in any artistic discipline to undertake community-engaged artist residencies in selected branches of the Toronto Public Library.

Applications for residencies taking place in 2021 are now closed. Please stay tuned for opportunities to apply for the 2022 program.

Please visit the Toronto Arts Council website for full eligibility, application and submission details. Click to view or download a PDF of the Artists in the Library Program Guidelines.