In 2017, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage celebrates the 25th anniversary of the Pew Fellowships in the Arts. Since 1992, the Fellowships program has invested annually in the Philadelphia region’s most talented artists working in all disciplines. Direct financial support through unrestricted grants affords fellows valuable time and substantial resources to focus on artistic exploration and professional development. In celebration of the anniversary, The Pew Center has launched a website and video showcasing past and present fellows.
Support for Individual Artists
Grantmakers in the Arts believes that artists are the keystone to a thriving creative community. Since GIA’s incorporation, members of Grantmakers in the Arts have been working together to promote and improve funding for individual artists, producing preconferences, conference sessions, articles, and toolkits for colleagues in the field. Noting a lack of sector-wide data on artist support, GIA began development on a taxonomy that could serve as a national standard for collecting, comparing, and analyzing data on support programs for individual artists. GIA released A Proposed National Standard Taxonomy for Reporting Data on Support for Individual Artists in 2014.
Tony Grant, co-director of Sustainable Arts Foundation, has published a blog post highlighting the work GIA has done over the years to advance support for individual artists. This April, a new GIA webinar series will discuss (and dispel) the myths that surround individual artist support.
An article on Cleveland.com discusses the ongoing process for Cuyahoga Arts and Culture (CAC) as it reenvisions its grant programs for individual artists. CAC received criticism from Cleveland’s arts community after announcing plans to eliminate its Creative Workforce Fellowship grants and replace them with a new program, the Creative Community Fellowship. The article details the circumstances and strategies surrounding the program change, as well as CAC’s intentions in developing “a new, more equitable funding process.”
A recent article in American Theatre reveals the financial realities of living and working as a theatre artist in the US. Author Diep Tran interviews five theatre artists around the country on how they make a living, what it’s like to work in the field, and “how they think the field could or should change to become a place that can sustain and retain talented people.”
Starting in 2017, Rasmuson Foundation based in Anchorage, Alaska offers enhancements to its individual artists award program. Enhancements include greater flexibility in its application process to more opportunities for professional development and promotion for artists. Changes were implemented in part based on artist feedback.
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation announced a new investment in documentary film with a four-year, $5 million grant to the International Documentary Association (IDA) to establish the IDA Documentary/Journalism Project. The IDA Documentary/Journalism Project will support production and development grants to nonfiction filmmakers taking on in-depth exploration of contemporary stories through a journalistic lens; and support, mentorship, training and access to resources for both grantees and the broader field.
From the Los Angeles Times:
We are delighted to announce our Fall 2016 Award winners.
The governor of Kentucky recently announced the restructuring of the Kentucky Arts Council in order to “focus on ensuring that Kentucky artisans have the skills and knowledge to develop and successfully sell their products.” As reported by WFPL, Louisville’s NPR news station, the council’s restructuring has sparked conversation and concern about the relationship between intrinsic and economic value of the arts.
The 2016 annual report from the Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP) reveals the results of a survey in 2015 of arts alumni of 53 higher education institutions across the US and into Canada. “SNAAP survey questions address (a) the extent to which alumni feel connected to their educational institution; (b) the resources current artists lack; and (c) which alumni work across multiple art forms/disciplines.”