Thursday, November 15, 2007

Arts Advocacy Update XIX

The content below has been appropriated from Americans for the Arts' Cultural Policy Listserv, a product of its Arts Policy Information Center.

I have worked as a journalist and editor with Americans for the Arts in the past, and endorse and support their work. I am therefore pleased to appropriate this content with their permission. I do, however, urge everyone to check out their
entire website and to visit it regularly as a great source of news and information for the arts community.

I also urge everyone to
join the listserv so you can receive the same email blasts I do, from which the content below is being taken.

Social networking Web site launched for artists
Washington Post - Reuters, 11/12/2007
"A Canadian publisher and philanthropist has launched a new social networking site for artists, underlining the growing influence of the Internet in showcasing and selling art. Louise MacBain said the site,, could be compared to popular networking site, and allowed artists to showcase their work, chat with each other online and blog. . . . MacBain's company LTB Media has also re-launched, an online guide to art and culture, and a new Art Sales Index allowing users to access auction prices and other records for more than 200,000 artists."
New York theatre should have something like this, no?

Montreal set for $120M revamp of entertainment district
CBC News (Canada), 11/13/2007

"An area of Montreal is earmarked for a major facelift after all three levels of government pledged $120 million toward the revamp as an attractive arts and entertainment hub."
What a story this is, assuming it all happens. It makes the idea of developing a $300 million fund for OOB theatre not so far-fetched, really. Frankly, if we can harness the economic, social, political and aesthetic arguments -- and reading this article might give us some clues -- it might actually happen. For example, here's a bit of the piece:

The spirit behind the project extends from the co-operation between the different levels of government as well as the community itself, Quebec Premier Jean Charest said Monday. The parties involved have "an out of the ordinary will to do something that is going to be significant for Montreal and really leave a profound mark," he said.

Study: Aging Artists Remain Resilient
Washington Post - AP, 11/12/2007
"Aging artists in New York City stay engaged and productive well past retirement age and would choose their profession again if they were starting over, according to a new study. 'Above Ground: Information on Artists III: Special Focus New York City Aging Artists' found that contrary to the stereotype that people become more isolated as they age, aging artists remain passionate and display high self-esteem and life satisfaction. . . . A second phase of the study is to include aging artists in the performing and literary fields."
You can find a link to the actual study here. Why, though, is the Washington Post reporting on this study and not media outlets in, um, New York City, where the subjects live? Two, the rollout on this study is going to be very nice -- probably because it'll be affiliated with the Teachers College and Columbia University. What I think the League of Indie Theaters will want, in order to generate an economic impact report on some kind, is some sort of similar arrangement, although obviously not with Columbia.

Could state dollars be a long-term solution for arts funding in Colorado?
Rocky Mountain Chronicle (Fort Collins, CO), 11/8/2007
After suffering a $200,000, all-time low state allocation in 2004, the Colorado Council on the Arts (CCA) is celebrating this year's state appropriation of $1.5 million. But the CCA is not confident state funding will continue to grow at the same rate as Colorado's arts. The future may depend on local-level initiatives, such as "the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD) in Denver, which was created in 1989 and distributes sales tax to arts and sciences organizations in the Denver-metro area."
Great local story. I've always been fascinated by the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District in Denver. Get this:
Since 1989, Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD) has distributed funds from a 1/10 of 1% sales and use tax to cultural facilities throughout the seven-county Denver metropolitan area. The funds support cultural facilities whose primary purpose is to enlighten and entertain the public through the production, presentation, exhibition, advancement and preservation of art, music, theatre, dance, zoology, botany, natural history and cultural history.

How about that, hm?

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