CanariCam is the facility mid-infrared (MIR) instrument for the Gran Telescopio Canarias (GTC), a 10.4m
telescope at the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos on La Palma. One of the science drivers for CanariCam is the study of active galactic nuclei (AGN). We will exploit the instrument's high sensitivity in imaging,
spectroscopy, and polarimetry modes to answer fundamental questions of AGN and their host galaxies. Dust in
the nucleus of an active galaxy reprocesses the intrinsic radiation of the central engine to emerge in the MIR.
Current work demonstrates that the hot dust immediately associated with the AGN, which blocks direct views of
the AGN from some lines of sight, is confined to small (parsec) scales. Thus, high spatial resolution is essential to
probe the "torus" of unified AGN models separate from the host galaxy. CanariCam provides a 0.08" pixel scale
for Nyquist sampling the diffraction-limited point spread function at 8μm, and narrow (0.2") spectroscopy slits
(with R=120-1300). New observations with the GTC/CanariCam will provide key constraints on the physical
conditions in the clumpy torus, and we will sensitively determine AGN obscuration as a function of nuclear
activity. We will therefore address the fueling process and its relationship to the torus, the interaction with the
host galaxy, and dust chemistry. These data will be essential preparation for the next generation of telescopes
that will observe the distant universe directly to explore galaxy and black hole formation and evolution, and the
GTC/CanariCam system uniquely provides multiple modes to probe AGN.