GIA Blog

Posted on September 21, 2017 by Monica

The Washington Post has published an interactive and multimedia article that explores what happens in the human brain when watching a ballet performance:

Scientists studying various aspects of the arts believe certain components especially excite the brain. Neuroscientist V.S. Ramachandran proposes several universal laws of art, or common patterns found in works of art across time and cultures. These principles powerfully activate our visual centers. In theory, they tap into evolved survival responses.
Posted on September 20, 2017 by Monica

Flynn Center for the Performing Arts announced that its executive director, John Killacky, will step down from his role in June 2018. Killacky previously served on the board of Grantmakers in the Arts and as program officer for arts and culture at The San Francisco Foundation. As reported by Seven Days:

During his tenure [at the Flynn Center], the organization flourished, "growing to a $7.7 million operating budget while maintaining the organization's commitment to presenting exceptional artistic, educational and community engagement programs."
Posted on September 14, 2017 by Monica

Arts patron and philanthropist Alice Walton announced the formation of Art Bridges, a 501(c)(3) foundation focused on sharing outstanding works of American art. Collaborating with museums and institutions of all sizes and in all regions of the country, Art Bridges will help create and fund exhibitions, bringing together art from museums, private collections, foundations, and a collection established as a part of Art Bridges.

“Our country’s significant works of art should be available for all to see and enjoy,” said Walton. “Outstanding artworks are in museum vaults and private collections; let’s make that art available to everyone, and provide a way to experience these cultural treasures.”

Posted on September 14, 2017 by Monica

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation President Earl Lewis will step down in March 2018 after five productive years at the helm. At the completion of his five-year term, Lewis will return to the academy, and launch a new initiative, The Center for Social Solutions, to focus efforts on three core areas of concern — race and diversity; water; and the future of work. He expects to announce more details in the new year.

Posted on September 11, 2017 by Monica

The Ontario Arts Council (OAC) will receive a funding increase to its current base of $60 million, bringing it to $80 million over four years by fiscal year 2020-21. Over the next four years, this added investment to OAC programs will ensure that Ontarians have increased access to arts activity throughout the province and ensure that they see themselves represented in the arts. Two-thirds of the increased granting budget will be used to augment operating grants to arts organizations.

Posted on September 7, 2017 by Monica

Older adults who create art and attend arts events have better health outcomes than adults who do neither is one of the conclusions in a new report published by the National Endowment for the Arts. Staying Engaged: Health Patterns of Older Americans Who Engage in the Arts presents the first detailed look at arts participation habits, attitudes toward the arts, and related health characteristics of adults aged 55 and older.

Posted on September 6, 2017 by Monica

In a recent blog post, Ford Foundation President Darren Walker reflects on recent political events and the need for moral courage in America:

Like so many of you, I am bewildered, almost daily, by the onslaught of dispiriting, sometimes debilitating news. Just this week, a new, politicized (and heartless) assault on young, mostly Latino immigrants—the cancellation of DACA—has left me reeling. When I travel to visit the organizations we work with in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, friends and colleagues express shock about America’s leadership and standing in the global community.

While we’ve endured challenging times before, I have always maintained an unwavering faith in America’s promise and, more broadly, in our democratic values—and I still do. I have always believed that progress is cumulative—that, as more people and communities win their place in the circle of American equality and opportunity, this circle will continue expanding, in a virtuous cycle.

Posted on August 31, 2017 by SuJ'n

For the month of September, GIA’s photo banner features work and artists supported by the Metcalf Foundation. The goal of The George Cedric Metcalf Foundation is to enhance the effectiveness of people and organizations working together to help Canadians imagine and build a just, healthy, and creative society. The foundation invests approximately $5.4 million each year in charitable activities to work focused on the environment, performing arts, inclusive local economies, and special initiatives.

Posted on August 24, 2017 by Steve

In the latest issue of the GIA Reader, Stan Hutton of the Clarence E. Heller Charitable Foundation writes about the recent formation of the Arts Education Impact Group organized by Grantmakers for Education (GFE). Hutton notes that there is growing interest in arts education among GFE conference attendees, and that the newly formed group will promote understanding among GFE members about the benefits of a quality arts education. Read “Grantmakers for Education Forms Arts Education Impact Group.”

Posted on August 23, 2017 by Monica

A recent article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review highlights the practice of shared gifting, “a grantmaking approach that allows nonprofit leaders to award grant dollars to other nonprofit organizations.” The article discusses the potential impacts of this form of peer-to-peer support, including creating opportunity for otherwise overlooked organizations and supporting nonprofit collaboration.