Support Artist First

Artist First is Mercer Union’s new commissioning platform and the first of its kind amongst artist-run centres in Canada. Rooted in Mercer Union’s organizational history, Artist First emerges from our identity as a space that is uniquely positioned to support the production of new and experimental work.

We invest in the lifecycle of a project from conception to realization with curatorial vision and rigour, establishing Mercer Union as a space where artists can present ambitious new artworks. We have accomplished this as only Mercer Union could: through a commitment to artists at the heart of our operations, and an ethos of collaboration that sustains discovery, risk-taking, and artistic development through long-term support and dialogue.

Artist First emerges from this long-held commitment to building an intimate and supportive space for artists. The platform formalizes our commitment to the commissioning process and sets out to create milestone opportunities for artists to bring their visions to fruition in Toronto.

We invite you to join our Founding Commissioners—a group of dedicated philanthropists who have been involved with Artist First from the get-go—to make a gift in support of our commissioning activities.

Suggested levels of annual giving for Artist First are listed below. Monthly support and gifts of securities are always welcome and appreciated.


Contributions to Artist First are eligible for a charitable tax receipt for the value of the donation, or a letter of acknowledgement as applicable.

Recognition and benefits are commensurate with the level of your gift. For more information, please contact us by phone at 416.536.1519, or by email:

Julia Paoli
Director & Curator
Sonya Filman
Audience Development Coordinator


Mercer Union, a centre for contemporary art, is a Registered Canadian Charity No. 86857 4161 RR0001