How to Write an Artistic Resume

As a professional working in the arts, there are many instances in which you’ll need an artistic resume or a CV. Whether you’re submitting a proposal to show your work in a gallery or applying for a grant from a funder (including MAC), you’ll likely be asked to provide an outline of the previous work you’ve done in your field.

Here’s a helpful guide to putting together a great artistic resume, as well as a template document to make your own. Feel free to download this template, edit it, and use it as you’d like!


What is an artistic resume and what is a CV?

A CV, or Curriculum Vitae, is a complete listing of your entire professional history.

An artistic resume is a shorter, more focused version of your CV, summarizing your professional history and experience in your artistic field. An artistic resume is usually no longer than one or two pages.

The key thing to remember is that the information provided in either document should be focused on your professional arts experience and training. In other words, don’t include your work history if it isn’t relevant to your career as an artist, arts/cultural professional, or Knowledge Keeper.

Depending on the opportunity, you may be asked for either a full CV or a shortened artistic resume. For most MAC grant applications, a shortened artistic resume is preferred.

What should be included?

  • For artists: public presentations of your work, including productions, exhibitions, screenings, publications, recordings, performances, screenings, and more.
  • For arts/cultural professionals: experience related to your professional work history in an arts or cultural environment.
  • For Indigenous Knowledge Keepers: arts and cultural activities or community-based work that you’ve engaged in.
  • For all:
    • Post-secondary education, professional-level training, mentorships, apprenticeships, or workshops you’ve taken in your artistic field. (Don’t include high school courses or productions unless you are very emerging or applying for a Scholarship)
    • Experience as a teacher or mentor in your field.
    • Arts and culture-related volunteer activity.
    • Professional membership or affiliations.
    • Arts grants, prizes, or other awards you’ve received
    • Previous experience as an assessor or adjudicator for selection committees, exhibitions, awards committees, grant assessment panels, etc.

How should I format my resume? What should it look like?

List your name at the top of your artistic resume. The information you include directly below your name depends on the circumstance; for example, if you are a playwright submitting your artistic resume to a theatre, it may be wise to include your contact information so the theatre can reach you. However, if you’re submitting your artistic resume as part of a grant application, it’s not necessary to include your contact information on your artistic resume. Very rarely do you need to include your physical address.

While it may be tempting to flex your design skills on your resume or CV, a simple, easy-to-read design in black and white is best. This makes your document more accessible to all readers – including people with colour blindness or colour vision sensitivities and people who use voice recognition software.

Your resume should have headings with point form information beneath each heading, as shown below.

Training and education

Name of degree/program             Name of institution/org.              Year(s)

Apprenticeship                                 Name of teacher                            Year(s)

Public presentations (ex. exhibitions, publications, productions, concerts, films, etc.)

Name of presentation                    Name of gallery, venue, etc.        Year

Teaching and mentorships

Name of program                             Name of host organization           Year

Volunteer history

Name of program                             Name of host organization           Year

Professional memberships/affiliations

Name of organization, distributor, etc.                                                   Years active

Awards & grants

Name of award or grant                Name of institution                         Year


Name of panel/grant                      Name of institution                         Year

List items in each section in chronological order, starting with your most recent work at the top.

If you don’t have anything to list under a specific heading, that’s alright – just don’t include the section. It’s perfectly normal for emerging artists, students of the arts, and professionals early in their career to have shorter artistic resumes.

We hope this blog has helped you learn a little more about artistic resumes and CVs! If you have any questions about submitting a resume or CV to apply for MAC funding, feel free to reach out to MAC’s Helpdesk and a consultant will be happy to help.