Blog Posts for Indiana

Member Spotlight: Ernest Disney-Britton

Posted by Linda Lombardi, Jul 12, 2021 0 comments

Since its inception, the Arts Council of Indianapolis has provided programs and services to the citizens of central Indiana, and to hundreds of artists and arts organizations. Vice President of Community Impact and Investment Ernest Disney-Britton’s areas of focus include grantmaking, arts education, impact research, and equity partnerships. He provides support for arts organizations and individuals who apply for grant and fellowship funding through the Annual Grant Program, Creative Renewal Arts Fellowship, Robert D. Beckmann Jr. Emerging Artist Fellowship, and Transformational Impact Fellowship. Additionally, he coordinates the Any Given Child Indy program that is creating a long-range arts education plan for students in grades K-8 in Indianapolis Public Schools.

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Member Spotlight: Kathryn Armstrong

Posted by Abigail Alpern Fisch, Nov 23, 2020 0 comments

Kathryn Armstrong is the Executive Director at the Columbus Area Arts Council in Columbus, Indiana where she has worked since 2016. The Columbus Area Arts Council’s mission is to strengthen the Columbus community through arts and culture. With 15 years of experience working as an art professional, Kathryn’s work is centered around making communities stronger through art, culture, and civic engagement. During her tenure, she has implemented artist-led workshops, pop-up performances, and the 411 Gallery in downtown Columbus. Previously a faculty member at the Herron School of Art and Design from 2010 until 2016, Kathryn taught professional practice courses for undergraduate and graduate students and served as the Director of the Basile Center for Art, Design and Public Life. “As an arts and cultural leader, I look for ways to enhance daily life through arts activation, supporting artists and arts organizations, inspiring others to be creative, empowering youth, and more importantly implementing ways for folks to have equal access to the arts.” 

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How to Secure a Local Proclamation for National Arts & Humanities Month

Posted by Mr. Jay H. Dick, Sep 08, 2020 0 comments

Proclamations are a wonderful way that your mayor, city council, or your city (or county) in general can easily show its support for the arts and culture. Each year, Americans for the Arts encourages advocates to work with their local and state elected officials to issue a proclamation declaring October National Arts & Humanities Month in their city, county, or state. They allow elected officials to easily demonstrate their support for the arts, offer a written document for advocates to use year-round to demonstrate the value of the arts and culture, and serve as a tool to engage other arts advocates in their local communities. For those who have never done this before, I thought that I would offer a how-to guide help you understand the process of obtaining a proclamation.

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Essential in a Different Way

Posted by Kavita Mahoney, Apr 22, 2020 0 comments

This is an unprecedented time in our history—one I’m still processing and reacting to as things change every day. I’m reminded how grateful I am to still have a job I love and basic necessities such as food, electricity, and technology (especially to connect with loved ones). This experience also has taught me several important lessons and reminded me why I chose a career in the arts to begin with: creating is essential to mental health and provides an opportunity for human connection. People are rallying around the arts, donating money, collecting data, creating artwork, hosting live performances, and even collecting shared stories and histories around this experience to add to museum collections. It’s no coincidence that people are using the arts to stay connected to each other. The arts have always had a way of bringing people together, and this has been true even before we hit a global pandemic.

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Community Engagement in the Time of COVID-19

Posted by Ms. Patricia Walsh, Mar 25, 2020 0 comments

With social distancing practices supported by many medical professionals and government agencies to help slow the COVID-19 pandemic, limitations on public gatherings are good for public health but can provide a challenge for public art administrators to keep projects on schedule. Generally, public art community engagement practices aim to build connections and strengthen communication with stakeholder groups related to a project’s location or themes, or as part of oversight for public art programs. Communities engaged through public art include residential groups, local stakeholders, arts commissions, and others; and canceling or postponing events may hinder the development of public art projects. This blog post aims to provide insight, resources, and recommendations to maintain community engagement for public art projects and programs as we all work to promote health and safety in our communities. 

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A Strong Equation: How State Arts Advocacy Efforts are Paying Off!

Posted by Mr. Jay H. Dick, Feb 21, 2020 0 comments

The National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA) recently published their FY 2020 State Arts Agency Revenues Report. By any measure, the report paints a very positive picture for state funding of the arts, with year-to-year appropriations increasing by more than 37% to a grand total of almost $495 million in total legislative appropriations. Because the economy is doing well, it stands to reason that SAA appropriations would be higher. While it is true that a strong economy makes increases more likely, a strong economy alone cannot explain this year’s massive increase. There in an interesting equation at work: If your state has a State Arts Agency that is engaged in thoughtful programming, a strong statewide arts advocacy organization, and advocates who are proactively engaged with your state’s existing political leadership, more funding/pro-arts policy are possible! 

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