New summit at Banff Centre maps the future of arts in our digital world

BANFF, AB, June 27, 2019 – Join the world’s foremost cultural leaders for a national conversation on art-making in a digital world during this new summit at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity this fall. With lead partners Colleen Smith and David Maggs from Gros Morne Summer Music, and supporting partners MUTEK, and ImagiNATIVE, the Arts, Culture, and Digital Transformation Summit aims to ignite curiosity, confidence, and enthusiasm around Canadian art-making practices in a rapidly digitizing world. This three-day summit runs from November 22-24, 2019. Registration is now open at

“What does digital transformation look like from the artist’s point of view? What are the key challenges of and opportunities of digital literacy, creative literacies, and art-making in a digital age,” said Banff Centre’s Vice President, Arts and Leadership, Howard Jang. “Given the surprisingly long history of digital arts in Canada, the artist perspective has sometimes struggled to make it into our digital strategy discussions. The summit will explore our breath-taking dreams through the lens of big data, Indigenous digital voices and the diversity of emerging digital identities. Be a part of this national conversation, designed to inspire, challenge, and embolden leadership in digital arts practice at the level of art-making, institutional planning, post-secondary training and research, and cultural policy-making.”

The summit is ideal for artists, arts and culture leaders, technologists, futurists, funders, policymakers, gamers, researchers, capitalists, and Marxists. Together, attendees will absorb big questions around big data, delve into discoverability, and explore relationships with rapidly evolving audiences.

Outcomes include: investigating new modes of reality and new ways of making and disseminating creative expressions, exploring how Indigenous voices inform our digital landscapes, and understanding how Canada’s digital arts opportunity connects to larger strategies for our nation as a whole. Leading the conversation are some of the brightest minds in media and creative technology today, including:

Ashkan Fardost Global Speaker on Being Human in the Digital Age, former music producer and science nerd

Sharon Clark playwright, dramaturge, producer, and Creative Director of Raucous

Dr. Sara Diamond President and Vice-Chancellor of OCAD University

David Maggs Artistic Director of Gros Morne Summer Music, artist, writer, and arts researcher 

Ana Serrano Chief Digital Officer of the Canadian Film Centre and Founder of the CFC Media Lab

Kelly Wilhelm an Ottawa-based strategist and former Senior Policy Advisor to the Minister of Canadian Heritage

Bianca Wylie co-founder of Tech Reset Canada, CIGI senior fellow and founder of Open Data Institute Toronto, and Civic Tech Toronto

Experience every educational session and keynote presentation with the purchase of an all-access pass. Summit Passports and Summit+ Passports, which include accommodation and daily lunches, are available for both artists and delegates at The Arts, Culture, and Digital Transformation Summit is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts. We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts / Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien. For more information, visit

About Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity: Founded in 1933, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity is Canada’s largest postgraduate arts and leadership school. What started as a single course in drama has grown to become the global organization leading in arts, culture, and creativity across dozens of disciplines. From our home on Treaty 7 territory in the stunning Canadian Rocky Mountains, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity aims to inspire everyone who attends our campus – artists, leaders, and thinkers – to unleash their creative potential and realize their unique contribution to society through cross-disciplinary learning opportunities, world-class performances, and public outreach.

About Gros Morne Summer Music: GMSM, leadled by Founder and Artistic Director David Maggs and Executive Director Colleen A. Smith is one of the largest producers of professional inter-arts activities in Atlantic Canada with a reputation for innovation, working well beyond the idioms of its disciplines of music, dance, theatre, film and digital media. GMSM aspires to bring complex social themes into compelling aesthetic encounters working across and beyond arts practices as a global collaborator. Rooted in Western Newfoundland, its work with national partners aims to deepen the social agency of art with a commitment to the integrity of artistic practice, using the interconnected platforms of training, creative development, and presentation to integrate the transformative capacity of art into daily life. 

About Canada Council for the Arts: The Canada Council for the Arts is Canada’s public arts funder, with a mandate to foster and promote the study and enjoyment of, and the production of works in, the arts. The Council champions and invests in artistic excellence through a broad range of grants, services, prizes and payments to professional Canadian artists and arts organizations. Its work ensures that excellent, vibrant and diverse art and literature engages Canadians, enriches their communities and reaches markets around the world. The Council also raises public awareness and appreciation of the arts through its communications, research and arts promotion activities. It is responsible for the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, which promotes the values and programs of UNESCO in Canada to contribute to a more peaceful, equitable and sustainable future. The Canada Council Art Bank operates art rental programs and helps further public engagement with contemporary arts.