For July & August, GIA’s photo banner features a selection of projects funded by the Arts & Science Council (ASC) of Charlotte-Mecklenburg in North Carolina. Through significant support from both the public and private sectors, ASC invests about $14 million annually into the community through individuals, neighborhood projects, organizations, and education efforts in the arts, science, heritage, history, and culture. Learn more about ASC here.

Posted on November 4, 2011 by Abigail

In a post for Common Core, Lynne Munson addresses the ongoing lack of results from education reform, as evidenced by recent NAEP data, noting:

Maybe we need to give content a chance. What I mean by “content” is the actual knowledge that is imbedded in quality curricula. Knowledge of things like standard algorithms, poetry, America’s past, foreign languages, great painters, chemistry, our form of government, and much more.

Posted on November 3, 2011 by Steve

From Jonathan Abarbanel at WBEZ.org in Chicago:

Just a year after former Mayor Daley did a gut job on the Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) over the strenuous objections of long-time Cultural Commish Lois Weisberg, the new mayor and his new Commish, Michelle T. Boone, are reversing those actions as much as they can.

As first reported last week by WBEZ's Lynette Kalsnes, Commissioner Boone revealed in budget hearings that the 2012 plan for her department calls for taking back responsibilities for planning and day-to-day execution of cultural programs, which had been contracted out to the Chicago Office of Tourism (renamed the Chicago Office of Tourism and Culture in recognition of its expanded responsibilities).

Posted on November 3, 2011 by Steve

From Rick Cohen at The Nonprofit Quarterly:

While some museums are cleaning up with charitable donations (especially from the very wealthy), others are having a tough time piecing together sustainable budgets based on shaky blends of fees, sales, and charitable donations. That may have been the circumstance with two Austin, Texas museums—Arthouse and the Austin Museum of Art.

Posted on November 3, 2011 by Steve

From Hilary Howard at The New York Times:

Since he retired from Family Dollar in 2003, Leon Levine has transferred his man-on-the-scene approach in business to the foundation that bears his name.

“Leon’s gone after philanthropy in much the same way as he did making money,” said Hugh L. McColl Jr., former chief executive of Bank of America, which is based in Charlotte. “He sees donations as investments in worthwhile projects, he does a lot of due diligence when looking at potential recipients, and he’s diligent about holding their feet to the fire about doing what the money is supposed to do.”

Posted on November 2, 2011 by Tommer

The New York Times manages to mangle the NEA's recent report on Artists in the Workforce with the headline "Study Says Artists Have Higher Salaries" completely missing the point, and quoting the most misleading stat they could find in this useful research report.

Posted on November 1, 2011 by Janet
“It’s déjà vu all over again.” I stumbled across a speech I gave to a Rotary Club in 1998 on why business should support arts education. Here’s a condensed version. Twenty years later, same arguments apply and the situation is worse for workers and arts in education.
Posted on November 1, 2011 by Steve

ARTSblog continues its retrospective of the GIA conference with Barbara Schaffer Bacon writing about the session she and Marete Wester organized to look at the realities of labels such as "elite" and "progressive". The session included a short play by GIA deputy director Tommer Peterson.

With bold headlines generated by the release of the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy report "Fusing Arts, Culture and Social Change," the appetite was high at the Grantmakers in the Arts (GIA) Conference for an opportunity to address the charge of being elite so often leveled at the arts. Do we want to own it or change it? And, what about the progressive label? Don’t artists generally lean left?
Posted on November 1, 2011 by Tommer

The count isn't official yet, but the polls say that Ireland has elected poet Michael Higgins as president.

More here.

Posted on October 31, 2011 by Steve

From John Hanna at Bloomberg Businessweek:

Kansas has been told again by the National Endowment for the Arts that it's not eligible for federal funds, prompting the state Arts Commission's chairwoman to declare that the group will move forward with a "truly Kansas" plan for supporting arts programs with private money.

An NEA official told Gov. Sam Brownback's office in a letter this week that the Kansas Arts Commission remains ineligible for funds because it hasn't demonstrated that it's supported financially by the state. The letter, obtained Thursday by The Associated Press, says private contributions would not fulfill the requirement for state support.

Posted on October 31, 2011 by Abigail

We are pleased to announce that Rick Kinsel's inaugural post is live on GIA's Talk Back blog. With this comes an open invitation to you and your colleagues to contribute to the conversation on immigration, art, and grantmaking by commenting on the Vilcek Foundation's posts, which will appear throughout the week, and by sharing your own experience of working or funding in this area. Stay tuned!

Posted on October 31, 2011 by Steve

Happy Halloween!

Today, the NEA is pleased to announce a $50,000 Our Town grant for the town of Dead End. A unique artist enclave in the Afterworld, Dead End will use its grant money to further enhance the spiritual life of its residents.
Posted on October 29, 2011 by Steve

A new report suggests an emerging pattern of success among marginalized students participating in Hip-Hop education, leading to higher attendance and graduation rates. Re-Imagining Teaching and Learning: A Snapshot of Hip-Hop Education, released Friday, of a national scan of Hip-Hop educational programs by the Hip-Hop Education Center (H2ED Center) at the Metropolitan Center for Urban Education (Metro Center) at the New York University Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development.

Posted on October 28, 2011 by admin

Laura Barnett writes this article in The Guardian stating United Kingdom arts organizations are compensating for the lack of arts  in schools. This is the slippery slope the USA has been on for decades relying on the nonprofit sector to provide accessibility to arts learning that should be inherent for every child in every pubilc school. 

Posted on October 28, 2011 by Tommer

"There are 2.1 million artists in the United States workforce, and a large portion of them -- designers -- contribute to industries whose products Americans use every day, according to new research from the National Endowment for the Arts. Artists and Arts Workers in the United States offers the first combined analysis of artists and industries, state and metro employment rates, and new demographic information such as age, education levels, income, ethnicity, and other social characteristics."

Posted on October 27, 2011 by Steve

Ian David Moss reports on his GIA conference experience at his blog, createquity.com:

It’s hard to generalize from my experience this year, and I am always conscious of the fact that the intellectual diet that I feed on at the conference is shaped by my own tastes. But in general, there seemed to be a real thirst for innovation that was just a bit more urgent than in previous years. The sessions that drew the most positive attention were, by and large, the boldest: the ones that dared to seriously question the status quo or chart forward a path that hasn’t been tried before.
Posted on October 27, 2011 by Steve

ARTSblog's continuing coverage of the 2011 GIA conference continues today with a report from Marete Wester on her Roundtable discussion, “Funding & Changing Business Models”:

Ian David Moss and Dianne Debicella of Fractured Atlas, and Dennis Scholl of the Knight Foundation started off the discussion on how different funding strategies and new business models can be employed to support creative ventures, and provide “risk-funding” artists need to launch a new project or artistic enterprise.
Posted on October 26, 2011 by Tommer

Fleishhacker Foundation Trustee, Mortimer Fleishhacker III, always known to his family as "Mort," passed away peacefully at Davies Medical Center on October 25 from complications resulting from a series of strokes. Mort's primary interest centered upon serving the community in the tradition of his family. He was a member of the Fleishhacker Foundation Board for many decades. He served as President of Temple Emanuel (a role his father once held) from 1987 to 1990, during which time he led the campaign to rebuild its historic structure. Additional organizations he led or served with passion and zeal included SPUR, A.C.T., the Greenbelt Alliance, the San Francisco Jewish Family Services Agency, The Big Brothers, the Guardsmen and The San Francisco Development Fund.

Posted on October 26, 2011 by Steve

On her blog Bridging Differences, Diane Ravitch examines the reauthorization of No Child Left Behind:

Most people now recognize that NCLB is a train wreck. Its mandates have imposed on American public education an unhealthy obsession with standardized testing.
  • It has incentivized cheating, as we have seen in the well-publicized cheating scandals in Washington, D.C., and Atlanta.
  • It has encouraged states to game the system, as we saw in New York state, where the state tests were made easier and more predictable so as to bolster the number of children who reached "proficiency."
  • It has narrowed the curriculum; many districts and schools have reduced or eliminated time for the arts, physical education, and other non-tested subjects.
  • It has caused states to squander billions of dollars on testing and test preparation, while teachers are laid off and essential services slashed. Now we will squander millions more on test security to detect cheating.
Posted on October 26, 2011 by Tommer

Unsurprising comments on philanthropy from the late Steve Jobs, consistent with his practice. From the new biography Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.

Posted on October 25, 2011 by Steve

Since 2003, the Council on Foundations and the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers have co-sponsored Foundations on the Hill, an annual opportunity for grantmakers to meet with their federal lawmakers in Washington, D.C. This partnership effectively combines the Council's expertise on legal and legislative matters with the regional associations' expertise on local philanthropy and the leverage they bring as local constituents.

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