Racial Equity

Grantmakers in the Arts is committed to addressing structural inequities and increasing philanthropic and government support for African, Latino/a, Asian, Arab, and Native American (ALAANA) artists and arts organizations. Racial equity is a lens through which GIA aims to conduct all of its work, as well as a specific area of its programming. Since 2008, GIA has been elevating racial equity as a critical issue affecting the field. To actualize this work within the sector, GIA published its Racial Equity in Arts Philanthropy Statement of Purpose in 2015. Through webinars, articles, convenings, and conference sessions, GIA provides training and information to support arts funders in addressing historic and structural inequity.

An historical outline of GIA's recent work in equity is available online, including GIA Reader articles, blog posts, and YouTube videos from past conference keynote sessions.

September 20, 2016 by Monica

Grantmakers in the Arts has released an expansion of its landmark Racial Equity in Arts Philanthropy Statement of Purpose with new definitions, recommendations, and resources to support arts funders in taking up and continuing this important work.

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September 14, 2016 by Monica

By Ana Sofia Knauf, writing for The Stranger:

The [Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS)] launched a series of racial equity workshops in August to raise "community-wide awareness about existing inequities" and to ensure arts organizations had the training to discuss racial issues. . . . To meet [high] demand, ARTS officials announced they commissioned two more workshops, which will be held in late September. Carmen Morgan, national speaker on diversity issues and founder of artEquity, will lead the discussions, both of which focus on supporting people of color as organizations grapple with racial equity.
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August 3, 2016 by Sustainable Arts Foundation

The Sustainable Arts Foundation has recently committed to increasing racial equity in the arts. Starting this fall, at least half of our awards will go to applicants of color. Visit their website to read more about this decision and the thinking behind it.

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August 31, 2016 by Monica

A recent article from Createquity identifies and discusses four different visions for cultural equity:

The further we delved into the literature around cultural equity, and the more we consulted experts and connected with some of the activists who precede us, the more we came to realize that shared understanding simply doesn’t exist. . . . But in our own conversations, we found it helpful to divide the visions for success we were reading and hearing from advocates into four archetypes: Diversity, Prosperity, Redistribution, and Self-Determination.

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August 30, 2016 by Monica

A new blog post from the Johnson Scholarship Foundations highlights the work of four Native American women in nonprofits and philanthropy who are driving change in their communities. Lori Pourier, executive director of First People’s Fund, is recognized as “a leader in the field – not just for Native arts and culture – but arts and culture period. She is the go-to person for the ‘creative economy’ in Indian Country."

Read the article.

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August 29, 2016 by Monica

The Los Angeles County Arts Commission has released a new literature review on Public Engagement in the Arts. The report explores different ways in which “public engagement” can be defined and practiced, the purposes public engagement has been used for in the arts, and how the terms “audience” and “participant” have evolved and blurred over time. It also places public engagement in the context of one of the most urgent conversations taking place in arts and culture today, that of cultural equity and inclusion.

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August 9, 2016 by SuJ'n

In July and August 2016, GIA hosted four web conferences devoted to the topic of grantmaking practices that advance racial equity. The sessions offered concrete examples from the field on how various grantmakers from public, private, and intermediary perspectives are approaching different aspects of the grantmaking cycle to address inequities that have been traditionally imbedded in their organizational practices or in the funding ecosystem.

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July 20, 2016 by Monica

Artist Trust has announced the first iteration of its Racial Equity plan, introduced in a press release as "the next step in showing dedication to equity in the arts." The intention of the plan is to address and change historical and ongoing disparities in access to institutional funding, recognition, business practices, and job opportunities. It highlights shifting paradigms in Artist Trust programs, operations, and communications, both showcasing work that is in progress, revealing future plans, and celebrating past successes.

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July 12, 2016 by Monica

In a recent blog post, Arleta Little, program officer for the arts at The McKnight Foundation, discusses racial disparities in arts philanthropy and how McKnight and other organizations are working to address it:

Given historic inequities and shifting demographics, increasing arts funding alone does not address the structural issues affecting how these funds are distributed. We must change the minds (leadership and decision making) and the mechanisms (the institutional policies and practices) that prevent more equitable distributions of resources. This is racial equity work.
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July 13, 2016 by Monica

Alternate ROOTS, First Peoples Fund, National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC), and PA'I Foundation have collaborated to create the Intercultural Leadership Institute (ILI), a new year-long personal and leadership development program for artists, culture bearers, and other arts professionals. The four partner organizations have created ILI out of a shared commitment to pursue cultural equity and to support artists, culture bearers, and other arts professionals as change-makers in their communities.

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