Employment Opportunity: artistic Director

imagineNATIVE is seeking a dynamic individual who is First Nations, Métis, or Inuk for a senior leadership role. Now entering our 20th year, imagineNATIVE is the world’s largest presenter of Indigenous screen content and is a registered charity. imagineNATIVE is seeking an experienced creative leader to fulfill the organization’s artistic mandate, and to oversee Festival and year-round artistic programming.

Located in The Commons at 401 Richmond – a shared multipurpose arts space – imagineNATIVE is an Indigenous charitable organization committed to greater understandings of Indigenous peoples, cultures, and arts and to the development and promotion of Indigenous media artists and their work. This is an amazing opportunity to be part of one of Canada’s most successful arts organizations and one of the leaders in Toronto's vibrant independent film festival scene. The role will offer a high profile in the arts and Indigenous communities in Canada and internationally.

The Artistic Director is responsible for conceiving, developing and implementing the artistic vision and focus for imagineNATIVE’s Festival, year-round programming, and special artistic initiatives. The Artistic Director is responsible for securing and planning film, video, audio, digital, and other programming in keeping with imagineNATIVE’s mandate, artistic policy, and selection processes. The Artistic Director oversees the Programming Coordinator, Programmers, and the Jury, in addition to any other contract or support roles associated with any artistic initiatives. The Artistic Director reports to the Executive Director.

Our ideal candidate is a visionary programmer, an experienced manager, and an effective team and organizational leader with a deep passion for Indigenous-made media arts.

  • Salary: $70-80k per annum for full-time (40 hours per week)

  • Option to work reduced hours November to March on a pro-rated salary basis

  • Supplementary health benefits

  • Four weeks paid holiday (which includes an annual two-week office closure over Christmas and New Year)

  • 40 hours per week, with flexibility to accommodate meetings, events and travel outside office hours

  • Assistance with relocation expenses if not currently living in the Greater Toronto Area

Deadline: March 1, 2019 at 5:00pm EST
Applications received after this time will not be accepted

Working under the guidance and supervision of the Executive Director, the roles and responsibilities of the Artistic Director include, but are not limited to:

festival programming

  • Develop and deliver Festival artistic programming initiatives including screenings, gallery exhibitions, and special events;

  • Create critical path and work back schedules to align programming goals with grant and fundraising timelines;

  • Oversee complete submission process for film/video, audio and digital media works;

  • Review programming/artistic policy documents and submission forms annually, updating as necessary with input from staff and board;

  • Lead programming selection process with Programming Team, ensuring mandate and policies are adhered to;

  • Oversee process for final Festival selection of works including final text, print source, permissions, exhibition copies, etc.;

  • Establish Festival co-presentation partnerships;

  • Develop and oversee annual Festival exhibition(s), selecting and working with independent curators;

  • Develop and oversee Festival special programming such as commissions, spotlights, panels/masterclasses, focuses, Art Crawl, etc.

  • Maintain project budgets in keeping with approved allocations from Executive Director;

  • Write, edit and give final approval for all text written about artistic programming for Festival Website, Catalogue and all associated marketing/promotional and communications collateral, including catalogue notes, curatorial texts, etc.;

  • Ensure programmed artists receive required relevant Festival information about fees, travel/accommodation options, exhibition/screening dates, venues, etc.;

  • Serve as moderator for screening intros, Q&As and other relevant programming as required during the Festival;

  • Conduct print and video interviews on Festival programming as required/requested for marketing/promotional and artistic purposes;

  • Negotiate reasonable screening fees as required and ensure screening fees are paid in keeping with IMAA rates;

  • Manage the Jury/competition of the Festival;

  • Oversee marketing campaign and trailer production for the annual Festival, as well as support festival publicity;

  • Provide oversight to artist travel and accreditation process, with Guest Services team.

Year-Round Programming and Administration  

  • Take the lead on project grant writing for artistic Festival and year-round initiatives, including any final reporting;

  • Contribute to the relevant (artistic) components of annual operating/core grants, foundation grants, and private sector applications, including any final reporting;

  • Participate in fundraising meetings as required;

  • Oversee year-round artistic programming selection including for the Tour and all imagineNATIVE-curated co-presentations or special screenings, in keeping with mandate;

  • Contribute to strategic discussions for the imagineNATIVE Institute, in addition to participating in artistic decisions/discussions

  • Manage Programming Coordinator and Tour Coordinator;

  • Participate in the Indigenous media arts community to ensure open access point for Indigenous artists;

  • Develop and maintain relationships with Indigenous media artists and organizations, as well as non-Indigenous organizations, festival and industry partners at the local, national and international level;

  • Build strategic relationships and partnerships that advance imagineNATIVE’s mandate and to serve Indigenous media artists

  • Scout and track works in development and new works by Indigenous media artists, as well as larger industry trends;

  • Represent imagineNATIVE at other festivals and relevant events locally, regionally, nationally and internationally in keeping with strategic direction and resource capacities;

  • Oversee and supervise Programming Coordinator and any other programming related positions, including participating in performance evaluation

  • Adhere to organisational and departmental critical path(s) year round

  • Attend other committee and departmental meetings as requested/required

  • Work with Executive Director and Operations Manager, on critical path documents;

  • Collaborate with Executive Director and Industry Director to implement strategic plans directions;

  • Contribute to development of the annual budget as required;

  • Attend Board meetings and annual strategic planning session as required;

  • Prepare monthly reports for submission to Executive Director.

Skills and Qualifications: 

  • Proven track record of artistic programming or curatorial leadership and ability to manage and motivate a diverse group of permanent and contract staff;

  • Experience and demonstrated success in grant writing and revenue development, and an understanding of the existing non-profit fundraising environment;

  • Ability to write about Indigenous artistic content;

  • Proven track record of financial and budget management;

  • Highly detail oriented with the strong ability to multitask and the ability to meet often overlapping deadlines;

  • Ability to build and maintain positive relationships with a diverse group of stakeholders including sponsors, artists, community members, etc.

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills (samples will be required if chosen for an interview, ideally of reporting and/or grant writing);

  • High level of professionalism and ability to interface with diverse partners, community members, artists, and staff;

  • Ability to work independently and manage a number of projects in a deadline-driven environment;

  • An extensive network of contacts an asset;

  • Knowledge of the independent arts landscape in Canada;

  • Knowledge of Indigenous media arts in Canada;

  • Knowledge of international Indigenous media arts an asset;

  • Experience working in an Indigenous community or organizational context.

Deadline: march 1, 2019 at 5:00pm EST
Applications received after this time will not be accepted

Application Details:

  • Apply via email to employment@imagineNATIVE.org

  • You may direct the correspondence to the attention of the Hiring Committee, imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival, 401 Richmond St. West, Suite 446, Toronto, ON, M5V 3A8

  • Please send your cover letter and CV/resume as a PDF

  • Please write Artistic Director in the subject line

We proactively support Indigenous arts leaders and are seeking applicants who self-identify as First Nations, Métis or Inuit.  

For more information about imagineNATIVE, please visit our website.

We thank all applicants for their interest however only those selected for an interview will be contacted.