What We Do
- CIAS delivers youth and adult online arts courses to help our community enjoy shared arts experiences.
- CIAS is building an information HUB for people to find local arts organizations and businesses, as well as online courses and fun activity kits.
- CIAS stages community arts celebrations like Cochrane Culture Days.
- CIAS advocates for arts infrastructure in the Town of Cochrane.
- CIAS collaborates with other organizations:
- CIAS is partnering with Cochrane FCSS to make courses accessible for all.
- CIAS is working with Cochrane Immigrant Services Committee to combine the CISC Culture Hunt with Cochrane Culture Days into a multicultural arts celebration.
- CIAS is co-operating with the Town of Cochrane to prepare for in-person activities when health restrictions allow.
The Mission of the Cochrane Integrated Arts Society is to speak with a united voice that advocates arts with all stakeholders to enhance arts and culture in Cochrane.
The Vision of Cochrane Integrated Arts Society is for Cochrane to be a distinguished arts destination that embraces all forms of art and provides an unforgettable experience for the residents of Cochrane and its visitors.
To encourage artistic excellence and recognition of the high calibre and achievements of local artists.
To increase public engagement and support for the arts.
To encourage arts infrastructure investments by building connections among stakeholders.
To increase private sector investment in the arts.
To raise sufficient funds for the furtherance of the objectives of CIAS.
We believe that a healthy, interactive arts community enhances the fabric of society.
We are an inclusive organization, embracing cultural diversity and recognizing potential in all people.
We recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of the local arts community.
Cochrane Integrated Arts Society was formed largely because of the initiative and drive of Evelyn Marinoski, a long-time resident of Cochrane and artist of a variety of media. Evelyn had previously created the Arts and Culture Foundation of Cochrane (ACFC), a dedicated group that operated for a number of years, strengthening the collaboration of the arts community through exhibitions and the planning of an arts centre. Unfortunately, after intensive work advocating, designing, and contracting a feasibility study of the arts centre, it was not able to move forward. The ACFC continued to operate on a lesser scale for several years.
In 2018, Evelyn returned to the Cochrane arts scene and gathered a small new team of volunteers eager to see the resurrection of a diverse arts body. They established the Cochrane Integrated Arts Society and collaborated with the Town of Cochrane Artwalk to put on the Kickstart Party for the Cochrane community showcasing five venues and thirty arts groups and individuals to raise awareness and build connections.
In 2019 a new CIAS Board of Directors realized that they needed to focus their attention on advocacy for future visual and performance arts venues that will make Cochrane an art destination for both the community and tourists. They formed an alliance with Seniors on the Bow, Boys and Girls Club of Cochrane and Area and Lions Club Event Centre to plan facilities on Fifth Avenue West, and initiated meetings with the Cochrane Library director to collaborate on a library/black box theatre project. They met with Mayor Jeff Genung, Councillor Susan Flowers and senior Town Administration who expressed their support of the general plan for future venues.
In 2020, CIAS advertised widely inviting visual artists to join and formed an Artist Collective within CIAS membership that opened and operated the Route 22 Artist Collective Gallery at Grand Central Square. The gallery successfully operated June to October until the artists chose to form a separate nonprofit. The new organization, named Route 22 Artist Collective Ltd, now operates the gallery at the same site.
Currently, with COVID-19 not yet releasing its grip on society, CIAS is initiating online arts courses for the public. We are excited to start with nine courses variously for youth and adults and plan to add more as the project develops as well as expanding to in-person classes when restrictions allow.