Blogs

President Obama to Award 2013 National Medals of Arts

President Barack Obama will present the National Medals of Arts in conjunction with the National Humanities Medals on Monday, July 28, 2014, at 3:00 p.m. ET, in an East Room ceremony at the White House. First Lady Michelle Obama will attend. The event will be live streamed at WH.gov/Live.

The National Medal of Arts is the highest award given to artists and arts patrons by the federal government. It is awarded by the President of the United States to individuals or groups who are deserving of special recognition by reason of their outstanding contributions to the excellence, growth, support, and availability of the arts in the United States.

NAS Names Gail Crider CEO Designate

National Arts Strategies, the Virginia-based arts leadership organization, has announced that Gail Crider will take the position of President and CEO at the beginning of 2015. After having served as Vice President at NAS for over a decade, Crider will replace Russell Willis Taylor. In her tenure at NAS she has been integral to the organization’s transition from the National Arts Stabilization Fund to National Arts Strategies as well as the development of the range of services they offer currently.

Reuben Roqueñi to Join Hewlett Foundation as Program Officer

Reuben Roqueñi will join The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation as a program officer in the Performing Arts Program beginning September 2, the Foundation has announced. Since 2010, Roqueñi has worked as program director at the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation (NACF), a national indigenous arts foundation based in Vancouver, Washington. In that position, he was responsible for program development and managing over 85 grants to individuals, organizations, and communities.

Michelle Obama Pushes for Arts in Schools

From Randy Lewis, at the Los Angeles Times:

First Lady Michelle Obama took to an entertainment-industry pulpit in Los Angeles to stump for expanding the role of arts in education, saying that 6 million children in the U.S. have no exposure to any form of arts in school. Speaking before an audience of several hundred including L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti and California Sen. Holly Mitchell, Mrs. Obama stressed that music and other forms of art often connect with students and enhance their interest in core subjects such as math, science and history.
AEP National Forum, September in Pittsburgh

The Arts Education Partnership 2014 National Forum, Preparing Students for the Next America in and through the Arts, takes place Thursday, September 11 through Friday, September 12, 2014 in Pittsburgh, PA. Online registration is available now.

2014 NEA Our Town Projects Receive More Than $5 Million in Support

The National Endowment for the Arts has announced that it is expanding its support of arts-based community development with recommended grants for the fourth year of the Our Town program. Chairman Jane Chu said the agency will award 66 Our Town grants totaling $5.07 million to organizations in 38 states, investing in local efforts to leverage arts assets to drive community development.

LA School by School Arts Instruction Breakdown

Southern California Public Radio station KPCC has performed an analysis of arts instruction at Los Angeles Unified elementary schools. It found 87 percent of these schools won’t offer comprehensive access in the coming school year, in violation of California law. Only about 70 of the district’s more than 500 elementary schools will provide all four art forms: dance, visual arts, music and theater. But most of those only provide arts access to a portion of each school’s students.

House Committee Votes to Maintain Current Funding for NEA

From Isaac Brown, legislative council to NASAA:

In a somewhat surprising development, the House Appropriations Committee voted today to approve a budget for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) at its current funding level, $146 million, for fiscal year 2015. The action comes less than a week after the House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee voted to reduce funding for the NEA to $138 million.
Who is Creative Placemaking?

Comments by Daniel Siepmann on New Music Box. "In the past four years, however, a new cash spigot has been cranked open for contemporary arts funding across the nation. Titled “creative placemaking,” this approach purports to culturally and economically reinvigorate American “places” of all stripes, rescuing them from their derelict status through the arts.

A New Voice for Arts Education

James Hamblin writes a compelling piece in the Atlantic. "It has been three years since the spectacular video of Lil Buck dancing to Yo-Yo Ma brought jookin—which draws from hip-hop, ballet, jazz, and modern dance—into mainstream consciousness. Ma would later call Buck a genius; and, he is. According to the theory of multiple intelligences, which posits nine distinct dimensions, Buck is clearly off the charts in intelligences like spatial, musical/rhythmic, and bodily/kinesthetic."