Job Opportunity: Programming Assistant
Position funded though the Young Canada Works at Building Careers in Heritage Program

October 16, 2023 – March 30, 2024
Full time (30 hours per week) – $21.00 per hour

South Asian Visual Arts Centre (SAVAC) is seeking a Programming Assistant for a 24-week internship supported through Young Canada Works’ Building Careers in Heritage program. Early career visual and media artists working in any medium, who are also interested in working in the artist-run sector, are invited to apply.

This position is designed for an emerging artist who has recently graduated from their studies. As Programming Assistant, the successful candidate will undertake administrative and programming responsibilities supporting the day-to-day functions of the artist-run centre as assigned. They will be supervised by the Artistic Director and Executive Director. The Programming Assistant will work onsite at SAVAC’s office located at 401 Richmond Street West in downtown Toronto, as well as remotely. The successful applicant must live in the Toronto region or be able to commute. All necessary tools needed for remote work will be provided.

SAVAC’s Mandate:

SAVAC (South Asian Visual Arts Centre) is a non-profit, artist-run centre in Canada dedicated to increasing the visibility of culturally diverse artists by curating and exhibiting their work, providing mentorship, facilitating professional development and creating a community for our artists. SAVAC was founded to be an organization staffed by people of colour, committed to support the work of artists of colour.

We promote self-representation by developing artistic practice that is often informed by cultural identity through a range of mediums, aesthetics, forms, and techniques. We support work that (in)directly addresses the ways histories of people of colour are represented alongside the story of ongoing colonialism on Turtle Island and post-colonial histories of the global south. These works are challenging, experimental and offer multifarious perspectives on the contemporary world.

For over 20 years, SAVAC has operated without a gallery space as an explicit, political choice. Instead, as a means of pushing diversity mandates within the Canadian arts ecology beyond the minimum, we partner with galleries, institutions and museums to integrate artists and curators of colour into the curatorial and programming practices of those institutions.

An individual will be eligible for an internship funded by the Young Canada Works at Building Careers in Heritage program, if they:

  • Are a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident, or have refugee status in Canada (non-Canadians holding temporary work visas or awaiting permanent status are not eligible);

  • Are legally entitled to work in Canada;

  • Are between 16 and 30 years of age at the start of employment;

  • Are willing to commit to the full duration of the work assignment;

  • Will not have another full-time job (over 30 hours a week) while employed with the program;

  • Are unemployed or underemployed;

  • Are a college or university graduate;

  • Are not receiving Employment Insurance (EI) benefits while employed with the program; and have not previously participated in or been paid under this or any other Career Focus internship program funded under the Government of Canada’s Youth Employment Strategy.


  1. Currently working as an emerging visual or media artist practicing in any medium, actively expanding their creative body of work.

  2. Completion of a Studio Art, Fine Art, Media Art, Art History, Curatorial Practice (or equivalent) degree or diploma at the undergraduate or graduate level from a college or university.

  3. Knowledge of, and/or experience with the barriers faced by artists of colour.

  4. Excellent knowledge of contemporary art and Canadian artist-run centres.

  5. Intermediate English is required, while other languages are considered an asset.

  6. Strong written and oral communication skills with the ability to write a variety of texts, such as critical essays, promotional writing, and email correspondence.

  7. Computer skills required: Proficiency in Microsoft Office suite, social media platforms, Adobe Creative Suite, typing and researching skills. Proficiency with WordPress and Mailchimp is considered an asset but not mandatory.

  8. Intermediate researching skills with experience using online databases and library catalogues. Additional research experience with archives and museum collections is considered an asset.

  9. Ability to multitask within a fast-paced environment, autonomously as well as within a team setting.

  10. Availability to work a flexible work schedule for events, including evenings and weekends.

  11. Self-driven with excellent time management and organizational skills in order to balance self-directed work and meet deadlines.

Position details:

The Programming Assistant will respond to the Artistic and Executive Directors. There will be a two-week paid break over the winter holidays.

To apply, please submit your written documents in one single PDF or Word Document that includes the following:

  • Applicant contact information (including full name, address, city, email, phone number)

  • Brief description of your artistic practice and current goals (250 words max)

  • Artist CV or resume (maximum 3 pages)

  • Cover letter outlining your relevant skills and experiences related to the qualifications required for the role; and mentioning your YCWBCH eligibility.

  • Names and contact details for two references.

  • Please label all files LAST NAME_FIRST NAME

Completed applications can be sent to the Selections Committee at submissions@savac.net 

Please advise us of any accommodations needed to ensure you can complete the application or interview process. Please email accommodation requests to indu@savac.net.

This position is dependent on funding from the Canadian Heritage Young Canada Works at Building Careers in Heritage (YCW-BCH) program and candidate eligibility is stipulated by Young Canada Works graduate grant guidelines (Click here to learn more). Candidates must register online through the YCW website.

Application deadline: September 18, 2023

While we thank all applicants for their interest, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Suite 450
401 Richmond St. W.
Toronto, ON M5V 3A8

1 (416) 542-1661

Office Closed
Monday - Thursday
10am - 5pm
by remote appointment only


Stay up to date about upcoming submission deadlines, workshops,
exhibitions, and events at SAVAC.

Canada Council for the Arts Ontario Arts Council Toronto Arts Council Ontario Trillium Foundation