AMAAS serves media artists and organizations through advocacy, development opportunities and connecting media artists and media art organizations across the Province.
Programs include educational and networking opportunities at our biannual conference & symposiums, publications, awards, sponsorship, and artist commissions.
Since its inception, AMAAS has been governed by a volunteer group of directors representing the media arts in Alberta.
Join AMAAS with no membership fee (for individuals) and is open to the public, click here for more information.
AMAAS was registered on March 20, 1991 in order to encourage communication and collaboration across the province. A pivotal moment in the formation of AMAAS came at the 1989 Hinton Independent Film & Video Festival. Organized by Brent Spiess, the Festival was a showcase for Alberta film & video as well as a networking opportunity for administrators, artists and the general public, including the high-profile presence of then Alberta Minister of Culture & Multiculturalism, Doug Main. As the festival came to a close, there was a meeting organized between representatives of the production co-ops present: FAVA, CSIF, EMMEDIA, and Quickdraw Animation Society. The topic on their minds was the recently established Alberta Film and Video Arts Fund (AFVAF) as a lottery fund allocation. The fund, which they had lobbied for, was now the agency supporting the co-ops, and it was thought that political action might be necessary for its continued existence. The name “Alberta Media Arts Alliance” was conceived, and that September, Grant Poier penned the first of many lobbying letters to the Culture Minister in support of the AFVAF.
Three years later, with much time and dedication from the various personalities from the media-arts centres (including Liz Stobbe & Rick Gustavsen – FAVA, Brian Rusted, Ian Reid & Grant Poier – EMMEDIA, and Marcella Bienvenue – CSIF) the application for the Alberta Media Arts Alliance Society was filed and the organization was born!
Since then, AMAAS has continued to grow and expand its scope, and is recognized as the Provincial Arts Service Organization for the media arts. It advocates for the sector, creates connections between media arts centres and artists, rewards arts advocacy with the Spirit of Helen award, runs an annual conference or symposium and creates annual exhibitions including Prairie Tales: Alberta Film & Video on Tour and the Gallery of Alberta Media Arts (GAMA).
For a detailed history from 1991-2007, please read our publication: Sweet Sixteen: an amble through the history of the Alberta Media Arts Alliance Society.
AMAAS exists to advocate, educate, and celebrate the media arts in Alberta.
The media arts in Alberta is advanced through the generation of awareness, strengthening of connections, and continuous advocacy. AMAAS builds a sustainable and vibrant future for media arts in Alberta.
AMAAS represents and is composed of independent media artists, artist-run organizations, and supporters of the media arts. We believe:
- Media arts are foundational to Alberta’s identity, culture, and society
- Alberta’s stories and perspectives are valuable to the public in Alberta, Canada and the world
- Media artists and organizations deserve sustainable funding and support
- Alberta media artists are stronger as a unified community
AMAAS encourages all levels of membership, welcoming all individuals and organizations who support the aims and objectives of the Society. The Society promotes initiatives to facilitate equitable access to the organization and participation in its programs and services.