Blog Posts for California

#artssowhite - How can arts education help build equity in the arts?

Posted by Matt D'Arrigo, Feb 04, 2016 0 comments

Oscar season is upon us and rather than debating who will win Best Picture or Best Actor/Actress, the debate has been how “white” the Oscars are.  #oscarssowhite went viral and African American actors began to boycott. As a result, the Academy (which is 94% white) responded by making the bold move to change their composition to reflect more diversity.

The Oscar issue is reflective of a much larger issue across all sectors of the arts; lack of diversity. I just returned from the annual meeting of American’s for the Arts and all of their advisory councils. This issue was front-and-center over the three-day meeting, as it has become a top priority for AFTA. As I sat and looked around the room I could see why.

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Introducing the Artists & Communities Conversation Series

Posted by Alicia Gregory, Jan 25, 2016 0 comments

Americans for the Arts is excited to debut a new conversation series, Artists & Communities, highlighting the voices of artists and arts practitioners working across sectors and within communities. Over the next ten months, we will publish ten conversations between pairs of established and emerging community arts leaders as they share their visions for, experiences with, and challenges to making healthy, equitable, vibrant communities through arts and culture. As community-based work receives more recognition, and intersections and collaborations become stronger, these conversations illuminate just how artists and community arts leaders can work to sustain and maintain healthy communities through their practice.

First up: Liz Lerman, choreographer, performer, writer, educator, speaker, and founder of Dance Exchange, and Deana Haggag, Director of the Baltimore-based nomadic museum The Contemporary.

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Product Relevance–An Experiment in Engaging Silicon Valley Corporate Millennials

Posted by Audrey Struve, Jan 21, 2016 0 comments

In June 2015, Silicon Valley Creates, a regranting organization in San Jose, California, with a thirty-plus year record in providing funding opportunities for the local arts and culture community, made a bold move–for us. We took a first-time experimental step in investing in capacity building, specifically to elevate the conversation about product relevance.

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Living the Dream

Posted by Ken Busby, Jan 19, 2016 0 comments

“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.” As we reflect on the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. this week, I was reminded of this one of many, but not often cited, quotes by Dr. King.

Recently, the Arts Education Advisory Council of Americans for the Arts met for its midwinter meeting in Los Angeles. We spent much of our time discussing equity and the need for access to the arts for all students, pre-K through high school. We took a tour of the Colburn School, an outstanding music conservatory with numerous community engagement programs. The mission of the Colburn School is to admit students who have tremendous artistic promise and provide them with full tuition, including room and board, so that they can focus solely on their musical careers.

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How a “non-artist” found her niche in the art world

Posted by Cherie Northon, Jan 11, 2016 1 comment

A foray into the Monterey History and Art Association’s December 2012 exhibit, “Flows to Bay,” totally altered my outlook on how to communicate action on environmental issues. A small exhibit, it featured a variety of art using discarded plastics from the marine environment to demonstrate how they detrimentally affect our planet. I do not consider myself an artist, so the lenses I view the world through are primarily those of an environmental scientist. But what I saw hooked me, and its strong yet captivating message gave me new insight into a way to frame environmental degradation through art. 

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Top 10 in Arts Education 2015

Posted by Jeff Poulin, Jan 06, 2016 0 comments

Each December, I have the pleasure to reflect alongside colleagues of the Americans for the Arts’ Arts Education Advisory Council about what happened in arts education in America over the course of the previous year. It is truly one of my favorite activities – a chance to celebrate big accomplishments, learn from incidents that were not-so-good, and identify trends which may crop up in our work in 2016.

Last year, as we looked back over 2014, we discussed STEAM, creative youth development, standards, new reports, resources for specific student populations, mayors and more. Some things continued this year, and some things did not – check out the list below!

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