For the month of October, GIA’s photo banner features a selection of artists and projects funded by Houston Endowment. Houston Endowment is the Anchor Sponsor for the annual GIA 2014 Conference happening this month. Learn more about the foundation here.

Posted on December 15, 2011 by Steve

Nick Rabkin writes today for Huffington Post:

There's never been a golden age of arts education in American schools. Back in 1930, less than a quarter of 18-year olds had taken classes or lessons in any art form. There was much progress after that, but by the early 1980s more than a third still had none. And for the last thirty years, arts education for American children has declined sharply again. By 2008, fewer than half of 18-year olds had any arts classes or lessons, about the level of the 1960s. Most of the decline has been concentrated in schools that serve low-income black and Latino students. Many of their schools have become veritable arts deserts. Why have the arts been so marginalized in education? There are three big reasons. We might think of them as the three horsemen of arts education, just one short of an arts education Armageddon.

Posted on December 15, 2011 by Steve

Doug Borwick from his Engaging Matters blog delves into the state of the conversation on Equity:

The categories of inequity are multiple: class, culture, ethnicity, gender, race, etc., etc. Awareness of and response to each varies hugely depending on which side of the have/have-not divide one finds oneself. The have-not side always has a far greater awareness and understanding of inequity than is ever possible on the have side. As an over-educated white male of a certain age, it’s astonishing that I can ever see clearly enough to get out of bed in the morning. (And for all my effort to “see,” in the few short months I’ve been blogging here, Roberto Bedoya has already had to call me out, justifiably, once here.) The have side predictably sees all the good it is doing (in its own eyes). The have-nots see much more clearly how far there is to go.

Posted on December 15, 2011 by Steve

The Continuing Innovation Convening on Technology and Audience Engagement is currently underway in New York City. And you can follow the proceedings via the live blog hosted by EmcArts. Events conclude on Friday.

Posted on December 14, 2011 by Steve

From Ruthie Ackerman in The Wall Street Journal:

Proponents of small foundations say smaller donors often have closer relationships with the nonprofit organizations they fund, which allows them to see firsthand how donations are being used. (Suzanne) Skees, for example, says she visits her foundation's partners in California and beyond, getting to know everyone at the organization from the executive director on down, and familiarizing herself with the programs the organizations run.

Posted on December 13, 2011 by Janet

In 2012, Grantmakers in the Arts will form the Arts Education Funders’ Coalition. The Coalition will consist of funders concerned with the inequities of our public education system and determined that their investments should not be undermined by federal policy that ignores those inequities. Simply put, arts education is not equitably offered to all American children. Although there are national and state standards and regulations, we have been unsuccessful in creating an educational system where arts education is delivered to every child, in every school, every day.

Posted on December 13, 2011 by Steve

Ken Bernstein writes in Daily Kos about Diane Ravitch's speech (full text of the speech is available here) to the National Opportunity to Learn Education Summit on December 9:

For me the key of the speech by Ravitch appears in a series of the basic services that every child needs, that we could afford were the system not tilted so heavily towards the 1%, were we not wasting trillions in the military industrial complex, were we not so committed to bailing out the financial sector at the expense of the rest of us.
Posted on December 13, 2011 by Steve

From Sean Bowle at Technology in the Arts:

In the world of public policy, ideas are a dime a dozen. From issues ranging from education to trade issues, everyone has their opinion about the best course of action the government should take. What’s often missing, however, are new and exciting ways to present these ideas, taking formally bland issues and finding new ways to solve them.

This is where the arts community comes in.

Posted on December 12, 2011 by Steve

Barry Hessenius addresses the Equity Forum on Barry's Blog:

It isn't helpful to characterize this in any pejorative sense as evil or conspiratorial — rather it is really just the natural tendency to support one's “own” — the familiar, that with which one grew up. And that legacy of how things are done favors what it has always favor — the larger Euro-centric cultural institutions. The bottom line is this: we are not likely to change private decision-making as the same governs equity considerations until we change the culture of leadership currently (still) existent in the Board rooms where the decisions about who-gets-how-much-are made.

Posted on December 10, 2011 by Steve

Arlene Goldbard essays the Equity in Arts Funding blog:

Most of the GIA bloggers make modest suggestions as to how funders can channel more resources to the artists and organizations whose social and cultural contributions are now so disproportionately underfunded. Several point to their own organizations’ or allies’ work as models. Understandably, most position themselves as ahead of the curve, already taking steps to increase equity.

So far, at least, there are few comments (the online forum ends on 16 December, so there’s still time). My hunch is that is because there aren’t so many entry points in most of the posts: what is to be debated in a group of thoughtful funders and researchers mostly affirming what they already know?

Posted on December 9, 2011 by Steve

From Graydon Royce at the Star-Tribune:

If you don't cross every t and dot every i, you can kiss your cultural Legacy Amendment money goodbye.

More than a dozen Twin Cities groups that received Legacy Amendment-funded grants through the Minnesota State Arts Board in past years were stunned this year to find their applications rejected on what some say are technicalities.

Posted on December 9, 2011 by Steve

Teaching Artists and the Future of Education: A report on the Teaching Artist Research Project, the final outcome of the Teaching Artists Research Project, a three-year study by NORC at the University of Chicago, is now in the GIA online library. The extensive report was authored by Nick Rabkin and Michael J. Reynolds along with Eric Hedberg and Justin Shelby, and published in September of 2011.

Posted on December 9, 2011 by Steve

Surely the Arts funding community has a role in a discussion such as this. If you're on Twitter, join in!

Last month, the Rockefeller Foundation, in partnership with Resource Alliance and the Institute for Development Studies, convened a major summit in Bellagio, Italy, on the future of philanthropy and development in the pursuit of well-being. The summit—the culmination of a process involving regional consultations around the globe, the commissioning of papers on relevant topics, and more—generated key messages for institutions and individuals working in, and with, the development and philanthropy sectors.

Now, these individuals and others in the field of global grantmaking have a chance to weigh in and respond to those messages by joining the Council on Foundations, the Rockefeller Foundation, and The Chronicle of Philanthropy during a special Twitter Chat, December 12, 1–2 p.m. ET, using the hashtag #PhilChat.

Posted on December 9, 2011 by Tommer

Congratulations to the 2011 United States Artists Fellows, and in particular to Roger Shimomura, profiled in Fall 2011 issue of the GIA Reader.

Posted on December 8, 2011 by Steve

The online Forum on Equity in Arts Funding has added posts from thought leaders across the community. Today's new entries include:

  • William Cleveland, director, Center for the Study of Art & Community
  • Teresa Eyring, executive director, Theatre Communications Group, Inc.
  • Lynn Stern, program officer for Thriving Cultures, Surdna Foundation
  • Lisa Cremin, director, The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta
  • Jonathan Herman, executive director, National Guild for Community Arts Education
  • Ken Grossinger, chairman, CrossCurrents Foundation
  • Carol Bebelle, co-founder and executive director, Ashe Cultural Arts Center
  • Barbara Schaffer Bacon, co-director, Animating Democracy, Americans for the Arts

Join the conversation today.

Posted on December 8, 2011 by Steve

ArtsBeat at The New York Times reports:

Adrian Ellis, the executive director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, has told that organization’s board he will step down in early January.

“I’m coming up on five years,” he said in an interview. “I’ve had an absolute blast. Maybe I’m sort of restless.”

Posted on December 7, 2011 by Steve

The blog Cultural Equity Matters is covering the developments in the San Francisco Arts Commission problems surrounding the CEG program, including the announcement of Tom DeCaigny as the new Director of Cultural Affairs. Also see a personal response to the situation from Cora Mirikitani, President and CEO of the Center for Cultural Innovation.

Posted on December 7, 2011 by Tommer

As you may be aware, former GIA president Marian Godfrey recently announced her retirement after 23 years at the Pew Charitable Trusts. As part of her farewell celebration in Philadelphia today, GIA contributed a short video that we thought you might enjoy!

Posted on December 7, 2011 by Steve

On Tuesday, Grantmakers in the Arts launched the online Forum on Equity in Arts Funding. The forum will include posts from a great list of thought leaders and launched with entries from F. Javier Torres of the Boston Foundation, MK Wegman from National Performance Network, Jesse Rosen from the League of American Orchestras, and Aaron Dorfman from National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy.

Today, the forum adds six new entries to the forum:

  • Marta Moreno Vega, president and founder, The Carribean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute; adjunct professor, arts and public policy, Tisch School for the Arts, New York University
  • Judi Jennings, executive director, Kentucky Foundation for Women
  • Justin Laing, program officer, Arts & Culture Program, The Heinz Endowments
  • Barbara Schaffer Bacon, co-director, Animating Democracy, Americans for the Arts
  • Maria Rosario Jackson, senior research associate, Metropolitan Housing and Communities Policy Center, Urban Institute
  • Holly Sidford, president, Helicon Collaborative

Visit the Forum today and join the discussion

Posted on December 7, 2011 by Steve

From the Nonprofit Finance Fund's Social Currency blog, Rebecca Thomas and Rodney Christopher examine change capital:

Today, with the help of a particular kind of money--Change Capital--Alvin Ailey American Dance Foundation is attracting new revenue by building a technology platform and internal capabilities that maximize opportunities for patron and audience engagement. Merce Cunningham Dance Foundation is raising money upfront to wind down its operations in a graceful way and leave a meaningful legacy.

Posted on December 6, 2011 by Steve

Arlene Goldbard's comprehensive report on the situation facing the San Francisco Arts Commission's Cultural Equity Grants (CEG) program:

The city creates a special initiative to respond to residents’ deep desire for cultural equity, one small step toward equalizing access to resources. It is housed at the Arts Commission, along with many other programs and initiatives. This initiative supports artists and groups—mostly grounded in communities of color or other marginalized categories—who have not been able to obtain meaningful resources from mainstream sources. As the story unfolds, the host organism falls into disarray, rotting from the head. Supposedly objective (i.e., astoundingly under-informed and therefore unprepared) auditors are summoned to diagnose and recommend, but they are given a brief that covers only a few questions. Their recommendations are mostlly administrative and general, but they single out the special initiative for significant cuts.

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