Gifting the Arts (from Arts Watch)

Posted by Tim Mikulski, Dec 02, 2009 2 comments

Since it feels like Halloween just passed, it came as a bit of a shock to me that it’s already December. With Thanksgiving now also behind us, the celebration of the holiday giving season can begin. I know that I do not have to remind you that it is a great time to give last-minute donations to your favorite arts organizations, but it is also a perfect time to support your local artists.

As I have been catching up on my Google News searches from the past week, I noticed a number of articles in both major and local newspapers encouraging people to buy their holiday gifts at local craft fairs, galleries, and the like. While the members of the arts community might think of this as a no brainer, a simple letter to the editor from a local arts council chair or statewide arts organization director encouraging the rest of the public to do the same could do wonders for the individual artists who have scraped by through this interminable recession.

One recent example of such promotion comes from Kentucky where Governor Steve Beshear just proclaimed December 2009 as Give a Gift Made in Kentucky Month. The proclamation isn’t just in name only as the state is also offering Kentucky Unbridled Spirit gift cards that can be purchased in $25 to $100 amounts. The cards can be used to buy state-made arts and crafts from the Kentucky Artisan Center as well as other offers through the Kentucky Historical Society, state parks, and Kentucky Horse Park (hence the use of “unbridled” in the name).

So, if you have a spare moment over this busy month of social events, write a short letter or opinion piece to submit to your local press, reminding the average shopper that big box stores and online warehouses are not the places where you can buy holiday gifts. Artists and craftspeople make their gifts from the heart and with your purchase you’ll just be paying that forward.

2 responses for Gifting the Arts (from Arts Watch)


December 03, 2009 at 11:13 am

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This post was mentioned on Twitter by Americans4Arts: Tim Mikulski blogs about Kentucky's holiday gift card effort to encourage giving arts and crafts made in Kentucky

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December 06, 2009 at 1:21 am

good article. I think a lot of big businesses forget how important the small businessman is in everyday life. Anytime we can donate or help an arts organizations we always try to do so.

Happy Holidays

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