APRIL SPOTLIGHT ON THE SUSTAINABLE ARTS FOUNDATION

During the month of April, our photo banner features grantees of the Sustainable Arts Foundation, a San Francisco-based organization that just completed the second year of its pilot residency grant program. Read about the Foundation’s work in support of artists who are maintaining their creative endeavors while also raising children here.

Posted on June 25, 2013 by Tommer

After a 14 percent drop between 2006 and 2009, support for the arts by U.S. businesses increased 18 percent between 2009 and 2012, a survey by the Business Committee for the Arts, a division of Americans for the Arts, finds.

Posted on June 25, 2013 by Tommer

Three major groups that publish information about charities have started a campaign to persuade donors to look beyond overhead costs when deciding which groups to support.

“The percent of charity expenses that go to administrative and fundraising costs—commonly referred to as 'overhead’—is a poor measure of a charity’s performance,” says an open “letter to donors” drafted by GuideStar, the BBB Wise Giving Alliance, and Charity Navigator.

Posted on June 25, 2013 by Steve

Bonfils-Stanton Foundation, of Denver, Colorado, has announced new leadership with the naming of its new President Gary Steuer effective October 2, 2013. Steuer’s predecessor, Dorothy Horrell, announced her retirement earlier this year after 13 years with the Foundation. Since 2008, Steuer has served as the Chief Cultural Officer and Director of the Office of Arts, Culture & the Creative Economy for the City of Philadelphia.

Posted on June 20, 2013 by Steve

In an effort to promote resilience for the Sandy-affected region on the east coast, the U.S. Housing and Urban Development is launching the Rebuild by Design design competition. The goal of the competition is to attract world-class talent, promote innovation and develop projects that will actually be built. The Rockefeller Foundation, as the lead funding partner, will provide support for the analysis and design process and its support of the competition builds upon a strong commitment to promoting urban resilience through a $100 million investment, which includes their recent announcement of the “100 Resilient Cities Centennial Challenge.”

Posted on June 19, 2013 by Steve

Tom Kaiden announced this week that he will step down as President of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance to join the Alexandria Convention and Visitors Association as their Chief Operating Officer in Alexandria, Virginia. His departure will take place on July 26. Michael Norris, V.P. of External Relations, will serve as the interim Executive Director while the board’s Search and Transition Committee conducts a national search for the next president.

Posted on June 18, 2013 by Steve

The latest SNAAP DataBrief draws upon data from the more than 36,000 arts alumni from 66 institutions who responded to the SNAAP survey in 2011:

Who's Working as an Artist?
  • College major with the highest percentage of graduates who have ever worked as professional artists: Dance, Music Performance, and Theater at 82%
  • College major with the highest percentage of graduates who currently work as professional artists: Architecture and Music Performance at 61%
Posted on June 18, 2013 by Steve

From Nonprofit Quarterly:

...it appears that some categories of recipients have seen legitimate gains over the last year, recovering from the cratering caused by the recession. Giving to the arts, for instance, looks like it may be recovering, although for some organizations, deficits caused by unfortunately timed investments made in programming or facilities have caused problems that now need to be remedied. The growth of giving in this area from last year to this is even more striking when you consider that last year, the giving in that category was inflated by one $800 million gift to one museum.
Posted on June 17, 2013 by Steve

From Craig Melvin, reporting for NBC's Today, comes this story about Philadelphia's Mural Arts Program, begun in 1984 to connect students with teachers and world-renowned artists to design and paint more than 3800 murals city-wide.

Posted on June 17, 2013 by Steve

In a historic move, the leaders of the country’s three leading sources of information on nonprofits – GuideStar, Charity Navigator, and BBB Wise Giving Alliance – penned an open letter to the donors of America denouncing the “overhead ratio” as a valid indicator of nonprofit performance.

Read the full post.

Posted on June 16, 2013 by Steve

Hayley Roberts analyzes the University of Pennsylvania's Culture and Community Revitalization for Createquity's Arts Policy Library series.

From 2006 to 2008 SIAP’s Mark J. Stern and Susan C. Seifert researched and compiled a set of documents that sought to investigate the real impact of the “creative economy” on community and economic development. The Rockefeller Foundation funded SIAP and The Reinvestment Fund to partner and “merge cultural data with other types of information on urban revitalization.” The project’s publications included a literature review, three policy briefs, and a community investment prospectus in addition to a range of summary materials. This project led SIAP to frame its subsequent work around the concept of “natural” cultural districts, or specific geographic areas dense with cultural assets that have evolved in grassroots fashion.
Posted on June 11, 2013 by Steve

From Sandra Tan at The Buffalo News:

The Buffalo Public Schools are dropping band, orchestra and all other instrumental music programs next year in half the schools that currently have such program, according to district teachers. That’s 14 of the 28 remaining instrumental music programs. District teachers estimate 1,300 students will be affected. Another four schools will see reductions in their instrumental music programs.
Posted on June 11, 2013 by Steve

From Open Culture:

How could David Byrne never have given a commencement address before? As an experienced public speaker, a well-known creator who has carved out his own cultural niche, an advocate of things (such as cycling) beloved among world-changing young people, the founder of a band with a surprising multi-generational appeal, and a man with no small command of Powerpoint, he’d seem to make an appealing choice indeed. His first commencement address ever came this year at the Columbia University School of the Arts.
Posted on June 11, 2013 by Steve

A new research resource from the National Endowment for the Arts gives statistical profiles of Americans who reported an artist occupation as their primary job, whether full-time, part-time, or self-employed. The dataset looks at artists in 11 distinct occupations, including actors; announcers; architects; art directors, fine artists, and animators; dancers and choreographers; designers; entertainers and performers; musicians; photographers; producers and directors; and writers and authors. Some tables offer data on employed artists in particular, while other tables measure all artists in the workforce, both employed and looking for work.

Posted on June 11, 2013 by Steve

Through its Bolder Advocacy initiative, Alliance for Justice seeks to promote an active role for nonprofits in influencing public policy and to help them navigate the rules. The following webinars are coming up this summer:

Posted on June 10, 2013 by Janet

By Janet Brown from her blog Better Together

In my early years as an arts administrator, I remember thinking it was best to keep grant applications simple in order to limit the questions that granters might have. One line I always left blank was “indirect costs.” I did this because it just seemed a good idea to make the application financials less complicated. But how wrong I was.

Posted on June 8, 2013 by Steve

From John Butman, writing for Harvard Business Review:

There is a new player emerging on the cultural and business scene today: the idea entrepreneur. Perhaps you are one yourself — or would like to be. The idea entrepreneur is an individual, usually a content expert and often a maverick, whose main goal is to influence how other people think and behave in relation to their cherished topic. These people don't seek power over others and they're not motivated by the prospect of achieving great wealth. Their goal is to make a difference, to change the world in some way.
Posted on June 6, 2013 by Steve

Grantmakers for Education announced this week the appointment of Dr. Ana Tilton as its new executive director. Dr. Tilton brings 25 years of experience from across the educational spectrum, including serving as a superintendent, principal, director of curriculum assessment, researcher, and as chief academic officer for Denver Public Schools.

Posted on June 5, 2013 by Steve

Diana Aviv posts to her blog on the Independent Sector website five examples of artists leading society forward:

The South Africa I grew up in was a nation divided: four categories of people (“White”, “African”, “Coloured”, and “Asian”), four categories of schools and public services, a system tenaciously designed to guarantee whites the best of everything with few resources left for the others. As the ruling National Party tightened apartheid’s screws to restrict rights and prohibit protest, I watched my friends carted off, one-by-one, to jail for their resistence.
Posted on June 4, 2013 by Steve

Claudia Jacobs — Associate Director, Sillerman Center for the Advancement of Philanthropy, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University — writes for Huffington Post:

If we are to actively enrich our communities, arts should not be a stepchild of science, technology, engineering or math (STEM). In New England alone, over 53,000 people are employed in the “creative economy” and that sector, if it were considered in the North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS), which it is not, would rank just below the data and information sector and just ahead of the truck transportation sector, according to 2009 statistics compiled by the New England Foundation for the Arts.
Posted on June 4, 2013 by Steve

From by Susannah Schouweiler, writing for Knight Arts blog:

Have you heard of St. Paul-based writer Wang Ping’s “Kinship of Rivers” project? It’s an ongoing interactive public art endeavor intended “to build kinship among communities along the Mississippi and Yangtze, and bring awareness to the river’s ecosystem through art, literature, music, food and installations of river-flags made by river communities.”
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