Community Arts Council of Vancouver presents the annual Vancouver Outsider Arts Festival (VOAF) offering visual and performing artists facing social exclusion and other barriers opportunities for exhibition and sales, performance and participation, connection and learning. VOAF is Canada’s first and only festival for Outsider Art, which is represented by significant fairs and museums globally. The artists may be self-taught or trained: they are all devoted to their creative practices, and come from a point of view that is outside the mainstream art world trends.
Disrupting Exclusion, Inviting Connection
Our primary values are inclusion and active participation towards strengthening a sense of creative citizenship among participants and the public. Eligible artists self-identified as outsiders and have strong creative practices, with wildly diverse aesthetics. Artists and performers are paid CARFAC fees and benefit from the free workshops, networking, and promotion included in their participation: this can be a significant professional opportunity for outsider artists.
The festival aims to increase awareness about Outsider Artists and to challenge stereotypes about who and what counts in the art world. Outsider Art is different, this art shakes up what you think you know about art and sometimes delves headfirst into challenging social and political issues. The festival provides a much-needed platform for visual and performing artists to gather, learn, and share their creative scope with the wider community.
Three festivals have taken place at the Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre and included individual artists as well as organizational partners, workshops for artists and the public, and hundreds of artworks on display and for sale, alongside live art and other performance forms. Our 2020 festival was a hybrid with a 3-day livestream, online exhibition, and an in-person group show.
Our primary values are inclusion and active participation towards strengthening a sense of community and creative citizenship among participants and the public. See more about past festivals: