Grantmakers in the Arts

November 20, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Arts and Social Justice

The US Department of Arts and Culture isn’t a real federal agency, but as the placeholder until the government actually makes one, we call on all colleagues in federal government, campaign staffers, and federal contractors to urge President Biden to demand an immediate ceasefire to end the genocide in Gaza.

November 20, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Alternative Economies

Upstart Co-Lab connects capital to creative people who make a profit and make a difference. See what we see: the extraordinary talent, energy and potential of entrepreneurs and fund managers working in the creative economy to drive deep social impact, and the impact investors who are backing them.

Watch the full video here.

November 20, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Alternative Economies

Upstart Co-Lab connects capital to creative people who make a profit and make a difference. Upstart is launching a $100 million portfolio of funds and companies comprising the first impact investment strategy for the U.S. creative economy which will focus on fashion, film & TV, video games, food, the creator economy, the visual art market, immersive experiences, health & beauty and other creative industries. Upstart’s approach will prioritize BIPOC and women entrepreneurs, and deliver people-focused impact: quality jobs, vibrant communities, and sustainable creative lives. 

October 30, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Racial Equity

"With the stroke of a pen, the highest court in the land declared open season on the American Dream this summer when it effectively ended affirmative action in college admissions," said Stacey Abrams and Julián Castro for The Chronicle of Philanthropy. "The ruling put a target on all policies and programs that seek to remediate and prevent race-based discrimination everywhere, including workplaces and polling places — potentially imperiling the 2024 elections and opening the floodgates for far-reaching attacks on civil rights."

October 30, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Public Practice

From National Endowment for the Arts: On Tuesday, October 17, 2023, in recognition of National Arts and Humanities Month, the White House Domestic Policy Council and National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) co-hosted a convening to discuss the Biden-Harris Administration’s whole-of-government approach to arts and culture. 

This National Arts and Humanities Month, the Biden-Harris Administration highlights its commitment to supporting the arts, humanities, and museum and library services and integrating them into federal policies and programs, including major investments in the NEA, National Endowment for the Humanities, and Institute of Museum and Library Services. A year ago, President Biden signed an Executive Order on Arts and Humanities to spur investment and alignment of arts and culture across the federal government, make art more accessible to people from underserved communities, elevate new voices through the arts and humanities, and expand opportunities for artists and scholars. The Executive Order also re-established the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. 

October 30, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Arts and Technology

From National Endowment for the Humanities: Today, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is announcing a major new research initiative, Humanities Perspectives on Artificial Intelligence. Under this agency-wide initiative, NEH will support research projects that seek to understand and address the ethical, legal, and societal implications of artificial intelligence (AI). NEH is particularly interested in projects that explore the impacts of AI-related technologies on truth, trust, and democracy; safety and security; and privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties.

October 17, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Arts and Social Justice

"Across the country, students and teachers are heading back to school. Eager to reconnect, they are also ready to learn new concepts, discover unexpected insights, and be challenged by complex ideas," said Elizabeth Alexander for TIME Magazine.

But not everyone in American lecture halls or library stacks this fall will be allowed to learn and read freely. Due to recent bills and legislative efforts throughout the U.S., half our states censor the teaching of race and gender in public colleges and K-12 schools – especially any teaching that examines them in the context of our collective history. At the same time, books are being banned at the highest rate in our country since the American Library Association first began documenting those numbers. For students entering college, five times as many books are being challenged as when they started high school.

What will we sacrifice as a country by letting these bans stand? We cannot navigate our multicultural American society if we are operating from myth and stereotype instead of fact and shared experience – and its democratic workings slow when the education our students are taught is inaccurate and incomplete.

October 17, 2023 by Jaime Sharp in Cultural Policy

From National Performance Network: During NPN’s annual Board of Directors meeting this month, Caitlin Strokosch, NPN’s President and CEO, shared reflections on three key topics shaping our organization’s operations: