Artists by region of Ontario

Artists by Region in Ontario, a report commissioned by the Ontario Arts Council, provides an in-depth examination of artists in various regions of Ontario, including counties, districts, local municipalities and postal areas. A key strength of the report is the quantity of local detail provided, including newly-commissioned data for every county in Ontario.

In the province as a whole, the number of increased from 39,000 in 1991 to 52,500 in 2001, an increase of 33%. This figure is three times the 11% growth of the overall Ontario labour force.

Between 1991 and 2001, 10 municipalities saw their arts labour force double or more. Of all Ontario municipalities, Barrie had the fastest-growing arts labour force, more than tripling, from 110 artists in 1991 to 340 in 2001.

The five most artistic municipalities in the province are all small: Seguin Township (3.5% of the local labour force in the arts), Merrickville-Wolford (2.7%), Niagara-on-the-Lake (2.2%), Centre Hastings Township (1.9%) and Alnwick/Haldimand Township (1.7%).

These municipalities are located in different parts of Ontario, indicating that many small municipalities across the province have a high concentration of artists.

On a regional basis, the Toronto region has the largest number and highest concentration of artists as a percentage of the local labour force:

* Toronto - 21,000 artists, 1.6% of the local labour force;
* South-central (the Greater Toronto Area, excluding the City of Toronto) - 9,200 artists, 0.6% of the local labour force;
* East - 7,000 artists, 0.8% of the local labour force;
* Central - 3,200 artists, 0.7% of the local labour force;
* Southwest - 10,500 artists, 0.6% of the local labour force;
* Northeast - 1,100 artists, 0.4% of the local labour force;
* Northwest - 400 artists, 0.4% of the local labour force; and
* Far North - 100 artists, 0.3% of the local labour force.

The average earnings of artists in Ontario are $26,800, 24% less than the average earnings of the overall Ontario labour force ($35,200). Not surprisingly, this places artists among the lowest average earners of all occupation groups.

Two-thirds of the 500-plus occupations tracked by Statistics Canada have average earnings higher than artists. Other occupations with similar earnings include purchasing and inventory clerks ($26,700), typesetters ($26,900), accounting clerks ($26,900) and restaurant and food service managers ($27,200).

Artists' average earnings exceed $25,000 in seven municipalities: Toronto ($34,100); Ajax ($31,800); Pickering ($31,000); Ottawa ($29,700); Oakville ($28,300); Burlington ($27,700); and Windsor ($25,300).

"Artists" are defined by nine occupations tracked by Statistics Canada: actors; dancers; musicians, singers and other performers; conductors, composers and arrangers; artisans and craftspersons; painters, sculptors and other visual artists; producers, directors, choreographers and related occupations; and writers.

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