Steve's blog

New from the GIA Reader: Democratizing Education: Democratizing Leadership?

In Democratizing Education: Democratizing Leadership?, an article from the latest issue of GIA Reader, Dallas Shelby and Gail Crider, from National Arts Strategies, look at the massive open online courses (MOOCs) and their effect on the development of leadership in the arts and culture sector.

Future of Kentucky Arts Council Uncertain

From Sam Neace, writing for the Hazard-Herald:

Late last week rumors of Gov. Bevin cutting funding for the Kentucky Arts Council began circulating through social media. The Lexington Herald-Leader and the Courier Journal gave weight to this topic by publishing reports about the rumors over the weekend. Neither newspaper denied the possibility that the rumors could be true. Although it is still unknown at the time this article is being published whether or not Gov. Bevin does indeed plan to cut the KAC, several groups in the Mountain Region are worried about the effects such an action could have on arts related projects in their communities.
APAP Presents MK Wegmann With Fan Taylor Distinguished Service Award

The Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP) have named MK Wegmann with the Fan Taylor Distinguished Service Award for exemplary service to the field of professional presenting. The award was presented on January 18 at the APAP|NYC Conference. Wegmann is President & CEO of National Performance Network, a position she has held for 15 years, but announced last fall that she will retire in the summer of 2016.

New Report Checks Boston Arts Funding With Major American Cities

With Boston’s Mayor having just announced new funding for the city’s arts community, a new report — commissioned by The Boston Foundation and prepared by the consulting and research firm TDC — examines the current state of Boston’s arts community in places it in the context of 10 other cities. “How Boston and Other American Cities Support and Sustain the Arts” finds that Boston had a very broad and deep arts community for a region of its size.

Boston Mayor Announces $1 Million in Arts Funding

From Malcom Gay at The Boston Globe:

Taking action to increase arts funding in the city of Boston, Mayor Martin J. Walsh is unveiling three arts-related programs with a combined budget of $1 million. As outlined in Tuesday night’s State of the City address at Symphony Hall, the programs will provide direct grants to individual artists, expand the city’s fledgling artist-in-residence program, and establish an artist resource desk at City Hall, which officials said would act as a central information hub for artists working in the city.
What’s Ahead for US Philanthropy and Cuban Arts and Culture

In December 2015, the website Cuban Art News interviewed Ben Rodríguez-Cubeñas — co-founder and board chair of the Cuban Artists Fund, as well as director of the Culpeper Arts and Culture program at the Rockefeller Brothers Fund — about Cuban art and culture, US philanthropy in Cuba, and how Cuba-facing organizations are evolving in response to the changing sociopolitical landscape.

I’ve now taken [to Havana] two groups of foundations that are interested in Cuba. Some people are just visiting because they’re curious and want to see what’s going on without really having the intention of doing anything. We’re trying to do better screening, because everyone’s time is very valuable. And I think Cubans who are dealing with all this onslaught of people are also looking at how to decipher what’s real and what’s not.
New from the GIA Reader: Introducing Community Innovation Labs

In Introducing Community Innovation Labs, an article from the latest issue of GIA Reader, Richard Evans and Karina Mangu-Ward from EmcArts describe a new approach to harvesting the power of the arts to unlock complex problems at the community level.

New ‘Playbook’ Helps Foundations and Nonprofits Respond to Disasters

By Megan O’Neil, writing for The Chronicle of Philanthropy:

Grant makers and nonprofits have a new resource to help boost their effectiveness when communities face major disasters like Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy. The Washington-based Center for Disaster Philanthropy, in conjunction with the Council of New Jersey Grantmakers, released on Thursday the Disaster Philanthropy Playbook, a resource of best practices and approaches for charities faced with responding to catastrophes. It includes information on community planning, rebuilding, legal services, housing, aiding vulnerable populations, and coordinating across local, state, and federal agencies.
Preserving and Enhancing Arts Education through the Every Student Succeeds Act

The Arts Education Funders Coalition (AEFC), supported by Grantmakers in the Arts, worked over the past 3 years to ensure that arts education was preserved and enhanced within the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). ESEA is the federal law that provides over $20 billion in funding to states, school districts, and schools to improve academic achievement and improve teacher and principal training and quality. This undertaking by the AEFC paid off when Congress recently passed, and the President signed into law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which reauthorizes ESEA, replacing No Child Left Behind.

Read the full post.

Creating Spaces: Performing Artists in Sacred Spaces

Partners for Sacred Places, a national nonprofit organization founded in 1989, has released Creating Spaces: Performing Artists in Sacred Spaces, a report of findings from the Three-City Arts Study that facilitates long-term, mutually beneficial space-sharing relationships between arts organizations — with inadequate or no home space — and houses of worship with space to share. The findings from each of the three cities (Austin, Baltimore, and Detroit) establish a significant amount of available space, the desire of sacred spaces to serve as a broader community asset, and their minimal concerns about artistic content and control. The findings of this study demonstrate a range of issues, challenges, and opportunities facing performing artists and clearly establish that these artists:

  • overwhelmingly see a need for more performance, rehearsal, and administrative spaces;
  • see a home space as critical to artistic development and community engagement; and
  • feel that a historic sacred space could enhance the experience of their work.