In July and August, GIA will present a series of web conferences, “Practices for Advancing Racial Equity in Arts Grantmaking.” The first session will provide an update on GIA’s racial equity work, while the following three will explore practices funders can use to advance racial equity throughout the grant cycle. This series will feature examples from public, private, and intermediary grantmakers.
Posted on June 29, 2015 by Steve

By Ray Mark Rinaldi, Fine Arts Critic for The Denver Post:

Change comes slowly in the world of private foundations, and there’s a kind of comfort in that. Foundations are the bedrock funders of important institutions, like hospitals, universities and museums, and their dedicated giving is crucial to cities that count on their cash. But three years ago, Denver’s Bonfils-Stanton Foundation took a chance on change. Long a contributor to causes across the board, from homeless shelters to opera companies, the organization began steering all of its funding toward the arts. Culture needed the money, the thinking went, and by targeting one area, the foundation could set itself apart from its peers and become a real player in the community.
Posted on June 26, 2015 by Steve

Earlier this year, Arts Education Partnership (AEP) announced that the National Endowment for the Arts and the U.S. Department of Education have initiated a process for finding a new home for AEP.The NEA has now released the Program Solicitation for the AEP, a competitive process to find the AEP a new home in January 2016. The Arts Endowment requires organizations to submit their proposals electronically through Grants.gov, the federal government’s online application system. The Grants.gov system must receive your validated and accepted proposal no later than 11:59pm Eastern Time on August 4, 2015.

Read the complete program solicitation.

Posted on June 24, 2015 by Steve

Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge — a program aimed at supporting temporary public art projects that engage communities, enhance creativity and enrich the vibrancy of cities — has announced four winning projects:

  • Albany, Schenectady and Troy, New York — Breathing Lights, from artist Adam Frelin
  • Gary, Indiana — ArtHouse: A Social Kitchen, from artist Theaster Gates
  • Los Angeles, California — CURRENT: LA River, from artists to be selected
  • Spartanburg, South Carolina — Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light, from artist Erwin Redl
Posted on June 19, 2015 by Steve

From Mike Boehm at the Los Angeles Times:

Americans’ donations to arts and culture rose 9.2% in 2014, the highest increase in nine categories tracked by Giving USA, an annual report on charitable contributions. Overall, however, arts and culture commanded a modest share of the philanthropic pie. Estimated gifts to arts and culture totaled $17.2 billion, according to the report compiled by Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Although that was a record high, it represented only 4.8% of the $358.4-billion total.
Posted on June 19, 2015 by Steve

Featured in the current Reader is a review by Lynda Turet of Jeff Chang’s book, Who We Be: The Colorization of America, a journey through the nation’s relationship with race from 1963 until today.

Posted on June 18, 2015 by Steve

From Mike Boehm, writing for the Los Angeles Times:

Gov. Jerry Brown has a reputation as a budget hawk who’ll pounce on stray spending he thinks could leave California’s state government with IOUs that its coffers can't cover — and he lived up to it Tuesday, striking a deal with lawmakers that pares $2.2 billion from the budget that the Legislature had passed the day before. But the hawk is sparing at least one mouse-sized spending increase that will begin to restore California’s perpetually withered funding of the California Arts Council, the state agency that makes grants to nonprofit arts organizations across the state.
Posted on June 18, 2015 by Steve

From Ruth McCambridge at Nonprofit Quarterly:

In San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood, former porn theater The Dollhouse is no more, but it will soon be repurposed thanks to the Community Arts Stabilization Trust (CAST). The building will soon become home to CounterPulse, a performance arts nonprofit that promotes risk-taking as a central part of its mission…Shelley Trott, the director of arts strategy and ventures at the Kenneth Rainin Foundation in San Francisco, sits on the board of CAST and was instrumental in getting the Trust off the ground.
Posted on June 17, 2015 by Steve

The week-long discussion on Barry’s Blog continues. Yesterday’s question was “What kinds of research needs to be launched now so as to make the case for the value of the arts in aging and healing programs, and how can we involve the public in understanding and appreciating how the arts are making important contributions to both quality aging and healing?” Today’s question is Who else (what other disciplines and interest areas) need to be at the table as we solidify partnerships between the arts and organizations that are concerned with the issues of aging and those concerned with the issues of how the arts contribute to healing?

Posted on June 15, 2015 by Steve

Angelique Power has been named Program Director, Culture, for the Joyce Foundation. She is formerly the Senior Program Officer. The Culture Program grants $2 million annually to support a richly diverse array of arts organizations in Chicago around efforts to build capacity, create important work, and reflect the community from the board room to the stage. Additionally, the Culture Program hosts the annual Joyce Awards competition, which awards $50,000 to artist and nonprofit partners from around the Great Lakes to commission new, dynamic work.

Posted on June 15, 2015 by Steve

Barry’s Blog has invited a group of eight professionals to discuss a set of questions on the topic of Arts & Aging in a “blogathon” that began on June 14 with the initial post on Arts and Healing.

Dr. Julene Johnson shared this with me:

As you know, this field has been struggling for an identify for a while (at least in the US; less so in other countries). I noticed that you are using several terms, including “art and aging” and “arts and healing.” It’s quite possible that I’ve missed these terms in my work, but this is the first time I’ve seen the term “arts and healing.”

Posted on June 14, 2015 by Steve

Featured in the current Reader, Trustee Participation in the Annual GIA Conference is a report from Ellen Michelson and Teresa Bonner of Aroha Philanthropies of a panel discussion held at the GIA 2014 Conference in Houston.

Posted on June 11, 2015 by Steve

Ford Foundation president Darren Walker has announced that the foundation will focus the nation’s second largest philanthropy on issues of inequality. From Alex Daniels at The Chronicle of Philanthropy:

Not only will Ford direct all of its money and influence to curbing financial, racial, gender, and other inequities, but it will give lots more money in a way grantees have been clamoring for: It hopes to double the total it gives in the form of unrestricted grants for operating support. The doubling of general operating support to 40 percent of the foundation’s grant-making budget, projected to be in excess of $1 billion over five years, will enable Ford to create what its president, Darren Walker, calls a "social-justice infrastructure" reminiscent of the support it provided nonprofits during the civil-rights era.
Posted on June 9, 2015 by Steve

Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF) has launched artEquity, a facilitator training initiative on inclusion and equity issues for theatre companies nationwide. The program, which will have its first retreats in September and October, is supported by a $145,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. It will bring together a group of 25–35 theatre professionals annually to participate in analysis-building workshops and skills-based sessions and will address issues of ally-building, identity and privilege, and share the best methods of facilitating organizational change for theatre groups.

Read more about artEquity.

Posted on June 9, 2015 by Steve
Taking Out the Guesswork Infographic

Each year the National Endowment for the Arts celebrates master folk and traditional artists that embody this strength and diversity of culture. The recipients of this year’s NEA National Heritage Fellowships represent art forms ranging from those born and bred in the United States — such as the quilters of Gee’s Bend from Alabama — to those that are newer to our country — such as the oud playing of Rahim AlHaj, who immigrated to the United States from Baghdad. The fellowships include an award of $25,000.

Posted on June 9, 2015 by Steve
Taking Out the Guesswork Infographic

The Wallace Foundation has released a guide designed to help arts organizations use market research to identify ways to build meaningful connections with different audiences. Taking Out the Guesswork: A Guide to Using Research to Build Arts Audiences draws on evidence gathered from 10 organizations across the United States, including visual arts institutions, theaters, dance and opera companies. The guide provides valuable insight and detailed guidelines on how to learn more about current and potential audiences, create effective promotional materials, and more effectively track and assess the results of new audience-building initiatives.

Posted on June 4, 2015 by Steve

From the website Transom, Al Letson, host of the NPR show State of the Re:Union writes this manifesto for the Megopolis Festival that takes place June 5-7, in Oakland, California.

Long before I started working on State of the Re:Union (SOTRU), poet Sekou Sundiata, told me ‘one of the biggest issues in America is the country’s collective amnesia’. Our ability to forget whatever didn’t work in the narrative of these United States. We consume the world, and if the bones stick in our craw we spit them out and fly away. In some ways that might be our biggest strength as Americans, the ability to move on; to put one foot in front of the other and face the future. On the surface, it may seem admirable, but moving on without cleaning up just leaves devastation in its wake. Sekou went on to say ‘Our selective memory in essence has broken time’ — we live only in the present and the acceptable past. Much of Sekou’s life revolved around reclaiming our collective memory.

Read the full essay.

Posted on June 4, 2015 by Steve

The President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH) will expand its successful Turnaround Arts initiative into five additional school districts, as the program continues to successfully help turn around low-performing schools, narrow the achievement gap, and increase student engagement through the arts, announced the committee's co-chairs, George Stevens, Jr. and Margo Lion. This follows 2014's major expansion of the program after a Booz Allen Hamilton evaluation of the program's effectiveness.

Posted on June 2, 2015 by Steve

By Mark MacNamara, at San Francisco Classical Voice:

In the nick of time for many arts organizations, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee has announced a “Shared Prosperity for the Arts Package.” Over the next two years, the city will contribute $7 million to programs supporting the arts. The windfall, the product of a glowing hot local economy, includes a $2 million enhancement to the Cultural Equity Endowment Fund and $1 million to Grants for the Arts, which supports small and mid-sized arts nonprofits, individual artists, and historically underserved communities. The package also includes a $3.8 million capital investment in the city’s Civic Art Collection and Cultural Centers, and additional funding for arts education.
Posted on June 1, 2015 by Steve

Jerome Foundation and Camargo Foundation have announced that Ben Cameron has been appointed president of both foundations, and will be working primarily in the US offices in Saint Paul, Minnesota. He will take these positions on January 4, 2016. “Ever since my years in the Twin Cities in the 1990s, I have admired the extraordinary leadership of the Jerome Foundation, long one of the most important arts foundations in Minnesota and New York, and its incredible President, Cynthia Gehrig,” Cameron said.

Posted on May 31, 2015 by SuJ'n

For the month of June, GIA's photo banner features work and projects sponsored by Creative Work Fund. With assistance from other generous funders, the Walter & Elise Haas Fund has managed the Creative Work Fund (CWF) for 21 years.

The CWF supports artists making new work through collaboration with nonprofit organizations of any kind, and demands payment of those artists. Over time, the ways artists and nonprofits organize themselves and make work has evolved, but they still find collaboration to be powerful and continue responding to the CWF with inspiring ideas. Since its inception, the CWF has awarded $10.1 million in grants.

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