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NEA Survives Two Attempts to End Federal Funding for the Arts

Victory for the arts in the U.S. House of Representatives this evening! There were two attempts to eliminate federal funding for the arts and humanities in the FY’24 Interior Appropriations bill this evening and both were soundly defeated! Freedom Caucus Chairman Scott Perry (R-PA-10) sponsored two floor amendments: Amendment #60 to eliminate all funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) was defeated by a vote of 292-129 and Amendment #61 to eliminate all funding to the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) was defeated by a vote of 292 to 132. A full 100% of Democrats voted against both amendments and were joined by a strong 39% of Republicans to make it a BIPARTISAN declaration that Congress supports the arts and culture. You can now see your House member voted on the NEA vote and the NEH vote.

This victory is due, in no small part, to the hard work of arts advocates across the country. While more work needs to be done to match the Senate number for FY2024, today demonstrates the powerful influence arts advocates have when united together to support important federal arts programs.

Next step is that this House bill will now move to the Senate, where there is a difference in funding levels that needs to be reconciled. The House level sets both agencies at $186 million each and the Senate recommends $207 million each. We will be lobbying for the higher level. In the meantime, please thank your House members who voted NO on both amendments.

Be a Holiday Arts Champion!

Contribute to the Americans for the Arts Action Fund 2022 Year End Campaign

Please Contribute to The Arts Action Fund’s Year-End Campaign this Season!      

It was a successful year in arts advocacy. We kicked off 2022 with a set of four bold Arts Policy Platform positions that Arts Action Fund members not only voted overwhelmingly in favor of, but also made significant progress on:

President Biden issued a powerful Executive Order to reinstate the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities with a focus on equity and diversity policy issues.

National arts services organizations, the nation’s arts unions, and the Arts Action Fund made a unified ask to Congress to build a path to indexing annual federal funding for the arts and humanities to $1 per person. To that end, Congress will likely be finalizing the first substantial increase this month in an Omnibus appropriations bill. 

In the third COVID-19 economic relief package—the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)—the Arts Action Fund was part of a successful campaign to secure an extra $145 million each for the NEA and NEH. Moreover, many state and local arts agencies were able to secure millions of additional dollars in ARPA state and local regranting funds to support artists and arts organizations.

A groundbreaking number of 10 federal arts-specific legislative bills were introduced into Congress featuring creative economy, arts education, and equity policies. Each bill secured dozens of Congressional Co-Sponsors and will be reintroduced in 2023.

As the election season heated up, we launched our ArtsVote: Make Your Vote Count campaign, customizing our State Voter Factsheets with updated 2022 election laws for all 50 states. We created strategic social media toolkits for each state to highlight key voting deadlines.

We are committed to advancing arts policies that matter most to you. Can you help support our grassroots programs and political efforts to advance the arts in America by contributing to our Year-End Campaign with a gift to the Arts Action Fund?

Our success relies on the support and participation of our members. Help us reach our Year-End contribution goal of $30,000! Please contribute any amount you can afford.

Thank you for your generosity and have a safe and happy holiday season!
Nina Ozlu Tunceli
Executive Director
P.S. Here is the official full-length Arts Action Fund 2022 Year-End letter.

Oregon Cultural Trust Funding Impact

News and Updates
November 2022
Truth behind Celebrate Oregon!
Paying tribute to Oregon arts, heritage and humanities
The secret behind the success of the new Celebrate Oregon! license plate is this: the artwork pays tribute to our shared arts, heritage and humanities. The artwork’s 127 symbols celebrate our history, our diverse cultural traditions and the people and places that make Oregon so special.Every Oregonian who participates in the Cultural Tax Credit joins in that celebration. By donating to one of our 1,500+ arts, heritage and humanities nonprofits – then making a matching donation to the Cultural Trust by Dec. 31, you ensure the Trust continues to provide stable and growing funding to the organizations that define our vibrant way of life. You also qualify for a 100 percent tax credit for your gift to the Trust.**Tax credit limit is $500 for an individual, $1,000 for a couple filing jointly and $2,500 for a Class-C corporation.

Artist Liza Mana Burns with a section of one of the four Oregon airport murals featuring the Celebrate Oregon! artwork.

‘Tis the giving season!
Give guides go live in Portland, Bend
In addition to its longstanding sponsorship of the Willamette Week Give!Guide in Portland, this year the Cultural Trust is again participating in the Central Oregon Gives guide presented by The Source Weekly in Bend. Both guides showcase local arts and culture organizations and promote the Cultural Tax Credit to those who donate. They also offer donor incentives and prize opportunities, including a Give!Guide Mt. Hood/Timberline Lodge Experience on Dec. 30, sponsored by the Cultural Trust and Friends of Timberline. Check them out!

Included in the Cultural Trust’s Big Give Day prize for the Willamette Week Give!Guide is a pristine, rare and original copy of “The Builders of Timberline,” a 1937 volume produced by the Works Progress Administration for the lodge’s dedication ceremony.

Funding impact story
Performers, patrons of the arts find a home in Elgin
Nestled alongside the Wallowa Mountains sits Elgin, Oregon, a small Eastern Oregon community home to just under 2,000 people that also boasts a booming artistic community. At the center of this community is the Elgin Opera House, supported in part by funds from the Oregon Cultural Trust. Built in 1912 to house the Vaudeville style of theater, Elgin Opera House was the backdrop for some of the most exciting acts of its time while also housing the town’s local government offices.  Smaller theaters with a close-up view of the performers were typical of vaudeville theaters, which were designed to provide audience members a more personal perspective of productions. The Elgin Opera House operated in this fashion until the mid-twentieth century when it was converted into a movie theater. In 2006, current Executive Art Director Terry Hale took over with a new vision for the future. Read the full story, created in partnership with Here is Oregon.
The cast of the Elgin Opera House production of “School of Rock.”

Funding impact story
Talent Historical Society shares stories of rebirth from Almeda Fire
In September of 2020, the Almeda Fire hit the town of Talent, Oregon. Spreading widely and rapidly, the fire destroyed homes, businesses, and many forms of wild and plant life. In total, the fire destroyed 2,600 homes between Ashland, Talent, Phoenix, and Medford. It was the most destructive wildfire in Oregon’s recorded history. The Talent Historical Society recently launched a digital feature called “Talent: Town in Flames” that pursues the important mission of sharing the stories of the communities working to recover from this fire. Next up will be a book project and an exhibit funded by the Oregon Cultural Trust. The exhibit will include art, stories, and photo documentation with portable walls that will make their way to city hall, into schools, and the local library. Read the full story, created in partnership with Here is Oregon.

Firefighting superheroes of Talent, Oregon. (Courtesy: Talent Historical Society)

Funding impact story
City-wide art programming will showcase Oregon artists “Portland punches way above its weight as a cultural capital,” says Christian Viveros-Fauné.The Chilean-born, New York-based writer and curator is showcasing the Rose City’s rich arts community as Converge 45’s newest guest curator. Viveros-Fauné will lead programming with over 80 artists across 15 venues under the title “Social Forms: Art as Global Citizenship,” supported by a grant award from the Cultural Trust.Converge 45 is committed to the region’s unique creative community and engaging with critical issues in contemporary art.“It would be the understatement of the decade to say that I am excited about the opportunities a city-wide exhibition like Converge 45 presents,” says Viveros-Fauné.Read the full story, created in partnership with Here is Oregon.

Christian Viveros-Fauné. Photo: Will Lytch. 

Deb Schallert appointed to Cultural Trust Board of Directors
Deb Schallert, a retired Portland General Electric cultural and historic resources and environmental compliance manager, has been appointed to the Oregon Cultural Trust Board of Directors by Governor Kate Brown. Deb’s work at PGE focused on hydroelectric and wind projects; her responsibilities included tribal consultation with Northwest tribes. She also held numerous positions throughout the state for the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department and served on Oregon’s State Advisory Committee for Historic Preservation, several years as chair. “We are extremely fortunate that Deb is dedicating her wealth of experience and expertise to advancing the Cultural Trust in Oregon,” said Niki Price, chair of the Cultural Trust Board. “I am honored and thrilled to be appointed to this position and serve Oregon’s richly diverse communities and culture,” says Deb.Read the full release. Deb Schallert

Call to Action: Congress to Address Arts Funding in November

The final FY23 Interior Appropriations budget, which specifically includes annual funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), will be negotiated in conference soon by members of both the United States Senate and the House of Representatives. The current House version of the bill sets the allocation at an all-time high funding level of $207 million each for the NEA and NEH.  However, the Senate Appropriations Committee draft set its allocation at only $195 million each for NEA and NEH. Americans for the Arts and the Arts Action Fund have set up an easy way for you to quickly send two important messages in one step to both your Senators and your House Representative with these messages: Urge your Senators to accept the higher House-set funding level of $207 million each for the NEA and NEH for FY 2023. Urge your House Representative to stand strong on the $207 million allocation voted on by the House of Representatives earlier this year to fund the NEA and NEH FY 23 budgets. Contact your member of Congress today and make your voice heard about how vital the arts are to your state and our country!  
1275 K Street NW, Suite 1200
Washington, DC 20005
T 202.371.2830
F 202.371.0424

[email protected]

Oregon Arts Commission News

September 2022 News & Updates

Welcoming two Arts Commissioners and a new staff member, announcing an opening on the team and celebrating almost 200 recent grant recipients! Visit our Website

Roberta Lavadour and Kamilah Long appointed to Arts Commission
Roberta Lavadour, the executive director of the Pendleton Center for the Arts, and Kamilah Long, founder and CEO of The Black Whole, have been appointed to the Oregon Arts Commission by Governor Kate Brown. Roberta is an artist and arts administrator who lives and works in Pendleton. In addition to her leadership position with the Pendleton Center for the Arts, she serves as an advisor to the Roundhouse Foundation Residency program and as a member of the City of Pendleton’s Art Commission. Kamilah is an innovative leader and dynamic theatrical professional. Her multifaceted theater career includes roles as an actor, director, producer, educator, fundraiser, activist, and speaker. The Black Whole is a multimedia company focused on centering the Black global community through art and storytelling. It recently co-produced and served as a writer on the short film “You Go Girl,” selected for the Sundance Film Festival.“

Roberta and Kamilah epitomize the depth of passion and experience we need to support the arts in Oregon,” says Commission Chair Jenny Green. Read the full release.
Roberta Lavadour Kamilah Long

Sarah Baylinson named art collection and artist services specialist
Sarah Baylinson, the former exhibitions coordinator and collections manager for the High Desert Museum, has been named the Arts Commission’s new Art Collection and Artist Services Specialist. Sarah will manage artist materials and records of the State’s Percent for Art in Public Places collection, oversee the condition and location of artworks and provide service to the public, client agencies, artists and contract project managers in the specialized area of expertise related to public art, collections management and visual arts. They also will oversee the Art in the Governor’s Office exhibition series and support artist programs and special projects. Their previous experience includes work with the Bowman Museum in Prineville and the Log House Museum in Seattle. They served as vice president of the Oregon Museums Association for six years.
Sarah Baylinson

We are hiring!
Applications open for public art and artist programs coordinator
The Arts Commission is now recruiting for a new public art and artist programs coordinator. The position administers the statewide Percent for Art in Public Places program, which involves working with artists, architects, state agency representatives, educators, heads of institutions, contractors and the general public. The position is currently held by Eleanor Sandys, who will leave the Arts Commission at the end of October to explore creative pursuits and spend more time with her family.“

Eleanor’s contributions have been amazing and we will really miss her,” says Arts Commission Executive Director Brian Rogers. Learn more and apply. Application deadline Monday, Oct. 10.
Eleanor Sandys, who will leave the Arts Commission at the end of October.

FY2023 Arts Learning grants announced
Twenty-four arts organizations will each receive a $10,000 grant award to illuminate the power of the arts for K-12 students through $240,000 in FY2023 Arts Commission Arts Learning funding. All funded projects feature partnerships with Oregon schools reaching communities across the state. “So many schools lack adequate funding for arts education,” says Arts Commission Executive Director Brian Rogers. “We are grateful to these arts organizations for providing creative and enriching experiences for our youth. Arts education inspires further development and creative problem-solving skills, important for Oregon’s future leaders,” he adds. Read the releasewith recipients and project descriptions.

“Silus on Fire,” from the Illinois Valley Community Development Organization’s RiverStars Performing Arts program.

165 arts organizations receive $1,271,840 in Operating Support awards
Unrestricted awards totaling $1,271,840 will be distributed to 165 Oregon arts organizations through the Arts Commission’s FY2023 Operating Support Program. There are 13 organizations new to the program this year due to a growing number of eligible organizations. Ranging from $3,000 to $25,000, the grant awards are available to nonprofit organizations with arts at the core of their mission and budgets over $150,000. “We regularly hear that operating support is the most important type of award,” says Arts Commission Chair Jenny Green. “Especially now, as arts organizations struggle to recover from losses caused by the pandemic, these awards help relieve a bit of the financial pressure.” Read the full release listing all awards.

Tualatin Valley Creates’ 2022 LaStrada Artists. Photo by Michelle Bauer

106 statewide arts organizations receive FY2023 Small Operating Grants
Small grants that often make a large difference in ensuring arts access for Oregonians, especially in rural areas, have been awarded statewide to 106 arts organizations by the Arts Commission for FY2023. Awarded to arts organizations in virtually every region of the state, Small Operating Grants are designed to provide support to arts organizations with budgets under $150,000. Each organization will receive $2,261. “Although the Drexel H. Foundation (Vale) and our community is rural and small compared to other parts of Oregon, our impact is HUGE,” said Sandijean Fuson, president of the Drexel H. Foundation. “This grant helps us keep an unbroken existence of programs we have had for over 25 years, reminding our community they are important.” Read the full release, listing all awardees by region. 

Participants in the Open Hearts Open Minds Columbia River Correctional Institution Music Studio.

Upcoming grant deadlines
Arts Build Communities: Monday, Oct. 3
Individual Artist Fellowship (Performing Arts): Thursday, Oct. 13

Oregon Arts Commission | Phone 503-986-0082 |

9th Annual Angels Show is here!

Southern Oregon Artists Resource is beyond delighted that Art Presence Art Center in Jacksonville is again hosting our annual Angels Show! This is our 9th Annual Angels Show of angel art for Christmas, and the angels are on the wall, waiting for your visit.

Angel Thoughts From the Founder of Art Presence:

December at Art Presence brings the 9th Annual Angels Show. Why, for the ninth year, are we showing such a lively interest in the invisible world? Some of the greatest among the saints and men of God have found a place for Angels. Many of the most difficult questions about their nature, their grace, their intellect, and their love have been addressed masterfully. Their mission has always been to look after each of us here on earth in the pursuit of our salvation. Regardless of our question “why,” we invite you to join our artists as they present their unique perspectives on these winged, haloed beings.
~ Anne Brooke

A Little Angel Art History

Angel-like beings have appeared in art for millennia. However, the earliest artistic interpretation of an angel was found in the catacomb of Priscilla in the 3rd century…with no wings! Though there is some dispute about this, the angel is generally believed to be Gabriel, delivering the Annunciation to Mary.

9th Annual Angels Show : First known angel art from the catacomb of Priscilla, c. 3rd century BCE
9th Annual Angels Show: Image of wingless Gabriel delivering the Annunciation to Mary in the catacomb of Priscilla

Winged angels first emerged in 4th century Anatolia—on the Prince’s Sarcophagus, found at Sarigüzel, near Istanbul (c. 379–395)—the first of many found in Byzantine art. Check out this interesting piece on angels and their wings here, more angel history here, and another on the history of angels in art here.

Meanwhile, humanity’s ancient fascination with these celestial creatures continues to this day. Many artists return year after year with fresh artistic interpretations painted especially for the Angels Show with imagination and inspiration. Moreover, many patrons return year after year to add to their collections of angel art and to select angel art for Christmas gifts. Here’s “The Guardian,” a small yet powerful impressionistic piece in oil by Katy Cauker:

9th Annual Angels Show : The Guardian, 9 x 7 oil on panel by Katy Cauker
The Guardian, 9 x 7 oil on panel by Katy Cauker

9th Annual Angels Show

Come view the Angels Show from 11am–5pm every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. At least 2 angels had sold by the time we hung them on the wall, so if you find one that speaks to you, make that purchase of angel art for Christmas before someone else does!

Really? You have enough angels in your own home? Then consider giving angel art for Christmas to someone who needs a beautiful guardian in theirs! Note: Angel art needs to remain in the gallery until the show is over. You might be able to discuss a special angel certificate with the artist if you plan to give one as a gift.

The Angels Show is on display at Art Presence Art Center at 206 N. Fifth Street in Jacksonville, Oregon. It runs from Friday, December 3, through Sunday, January 2. Moreover, the gallery is open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 12–5 pm.

Watch the Art Presence Facebook page for featured angels throughout the month! Meanwhile, here is the gallery’s virtual tour of their December members show, artisan treasures in the Galleria, and the 9th Annual Angels Show to get you started.

Wine and Watercolor — Give an Experience for Christmas!

In addition to our exhibitions of fine art, the artisan treasures in the Galleria, and books written by local authors, there’s another way to give the gift of art for the holidays at Art Presence Art Center. You can drink wine with friends and family while you learn how to paint with watercolors together in Anne Brooke’s “Wine and Watercolor” workshop! All art supplies are provided, just bring your favorite wine and hors d’oeuvres and enjoy painting in festive company. Give the gift of a wonderful experience that will last a lifetime for Christmas! Call today and reserve a Thursday evening with up to 7 friends & family. $25 per person, vaccination required. Make your reservation today!

To ask questions about the art you see in the Angels Show or to reserve a date for Wine & Watercolor, contact Anne Brooke at 541-941-7057 or [email protected]

Reminder to Join the Oregon Artists Registry

As a tool for sharing funding opportunities, the Oregon Arts Commission partnered with The Ford Family Foundation to create the Oregon Artist Registry.

Professional artists are strongly encouraged to sign up for the registry by completing a brief survey about themselves and their artistic practice. The goal is to reach and connect with as many Oregon artists as possible, including those who haven’t previously accessed funding programs.

Call to Oregon artists

Oregon Arts Commission partners with The Ford Family Foundation to create statewide Artist Registry

Salem, Oregon – Ensuring artists’ access to funding opportunities and building a case for more artist resources are the goals of a new statewide Artist Registry created by the Oregon Arts Commission in partnership with The Ford Family Foundation.

Professional artists from across Oregon are encouraged to sign up for the registry by completing a brief survey about themselves and their artistic practice. The hope is to reach and connect with as many Oregon artists as possible, including those who haven’t previously accessed funding programs.

“We know there are many more working artists throughout the state than we currently have in our database,” said Eleanor Sandys, the Arts Commission’s Interim Visual Arts Coordinator. “Our hope is to update and expand our artist network so that we can better support the diverse artists in Oregon’s many communities.”

“We’re pleased to continue a longstanding partnership with the Arts Commission to reach and support the growth of the artists of Oregon,” said Anne Kubisch, president of The Ford Family Foundation.

Once established, the Artist Registry will allow the Arts Commission and The Ford Family Foundation, as well as other funding partners, to distribute information about upcoming funding opportunities. It also will create more comprehensive data about Oregon artists for planning and advocacy purposes.

Oregon Arts commission logo

Oregon Fringe Festival Announces 2022 Festival Dates!

The Oregon Fringe Festival Announces 2022 Festival Dates!

Mark your calendars! The Oregon Fringe Festival is thrilled to announce that next year’s festival will take place Wednesday, April 27 – Sunday, May 1, 2022.

After a long break from gathering in person to enjoy live performances, the Oregon Fringe Festival is excited to reintroduce live programming while continuing to offer online programming for festival-goers around. Last year, over 40 artists ranging from students to local artists, and even national/international artists participated, providing viewers with over 50 opportunities to engage and interact. As curating and planning begin to take place, the Oregon Fringe Festival is confident in being able to provide similar programming, if not more, for 2022.

“This year’s festival will be special in that we are able to provide content to our local community again that has always enjoyed our live performances, in addition to our not so local community that really flourished as a result of going mostly online last year. Especially for artists, this will be great in providing more accessibility when it comes to locating a platform to present their creative work,’ Paige Gerhard, Director of the Oregon Fringe Festival explains.

While applications to present at the festival haven’t been released quite yet, updates and more information can be found at

About the Oregon Fringe Festival:

Each spring, the Oregon Center for the Arts produces the Oregon Fringe Festival (OFF), a multi-day event bringing together emerging creators and real-world artistic practitioners to share their respective experiences and to engage with each other’s work. The festival’s mission is simple: to provide a boundary-breaking platform for free expression and to celebrate unconventional art and unconventional spaces.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend our events. If you are a person with a disability who requires accommodation(s) in order to participate in this festival, then please contact Disability Resources at [email protected] in advance.

The OFF is committed to providing a boundary-breaking platform for free expression that amplifies the voices of those who are all too unrepresented in the creative arts industry. A lens focusing on equity, diversity, and inclusion will filter our selection process for all projects submitted.

About the Oregon Center for the Arts:

The Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University serves as a creative catalyst for the mixture of students, educators, and artists from the state, the nation and the world. The beautiful Southern Oregon mountain setting provides a special place to learn, explore and train in all of the arts disciplines.


About Southern Oregon University:

Southern Oregon University is 175 acres of beautifully maintained campus with outstanding facilities, occupied by a committed and well-respected faculty and talented students. SOU’s vision is to be an inclusive, sustainable university for the future. Faculty, staff and leadership collaborate to achieve those ideals, and are united in their dedication to the students who will create lives of purpose and fulfill our region’s promise. SOU enhances the economic, cultural and social well-being of southern Oregon, and helps its students learn the skills to work both independently and collaboratively, be adaptable and embrace creativity. Its diversity gives SOU both texture and strength. Students’ thoughtfully shared points of view are valued and respected.


Southern Oregon University and the Oregon Fringe Festival are located within the ancestral homelands of the Shasta, Takelma, and Latgawa peoples who lived here since time immemorial. These Tribes were displaced during rapid Euro-American colonization, the Gold Rush, and armed conflict between 1851 and 1856. In the 1850s, the discovery of gold and settlement brought thousands of Euro-Americans to their lands, leading to warfare, epidemics, starvation, and villages being burned. In 1853 the first of several treaties were signed, confederating these Tribes and others together – who would then be referred to as the Rogue River Tribe. These treaties ceded most of their homelands to the United States, and in return, they were guaranteed a permanent homeland reserved for them. At the end of the Rogue River Wars in 1856, these Tribes and many other Tribes from western Oregon were removed to the Siletz Reservation and the Grand Ronde Reservation. Today, the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Community of Oregon ( and the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians ( are living descendants of the Takelma, Shasta, and Latgawa peoples of this area. We encourage YOU to learn about the land you reside on, and to join us in advocating for the inherent sovereignty of Indigenous people.

OAC Announces Artist Registry and New Commissioner

Launching our new Artist Registry, welcoming a new Arts Commissioner and sharing timely grant opportunities!
Visit our Website
Call to artists New statewide Artist Registry now open! To ensure artists’ access to funding opportunities and build a case for more artist resources, the Oregon Arts Commission partnered with The Ford Family Foundation to create an Oregon Artist Registry.
Professional artists are strongly encouraged to sign up for the registry by completing a brief survey about themselves and their artistic practice. The hope is to reach and connect with as many Oregon artists as possible, including those who haven’t previously accessed funding programs.
“We know there are many more working artists throughout the state than we currently have in our database,” says Eleanor Sandys, the Arts Commission’s interim visual arts coordinator. “Our hope is to update and expand our artist network so that we can better support the diverse artists in Oregon’s many communities.” 
Read the full release
Sam Hamilton (foreground) with the Camas High School Choir following a 2019 performance of THIS IS A CHOIR at Portland Art Museum. Hamilton recently received a Career Opportunity grant award from the Arts Commission and The Ford Family Foundation to support production of video and visual artworks for a solo exhibition at the Transmediale Festival in Berlin. Photo by DJ.
David Harrelson appointed to Arts Commission David Harrelson, the Cultural Resources Department manager for The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde and a Grand Ronde tribal member, was recently appointed to the Arts Commission by Governor Kate Brown. David has championed the use of his people’s ancestral art forms for the purpose of public art. His support for this work has resulted in five public art installations in the last four years throughout Northwestern Oregon. He has worked in the field of cultural resources for 10 years and before that worked as a wildland firefighter.
“We are thrilled to have David join the Arts Commission at this important time,” says Commission Chair Anne Taylor. “As we pursue ensuring greater equity and inclusion in all we do, his experience and expertise in tribal artistic practices will enhance our conversations.”
“It is an honor to join the Oregon Arts Commission,” says David. “I look forward to lifting up indigenous artists and art forms while ensuring broad reach and accessibility of the arts statewide.”
Read the full release
David Harrelson
Arts Access Reimbursement grants now available Organizations may now apply for grants to fund expenses related to providing access to arts activities and programs, including virtual events.
Access reimbursement grants fund: offset of expenditures for specific access expenses; public access to all individuals who want to participate in arts activities offered by Oregon arts nonprofits; activities to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act; and the identification of best practices in accessibility throughout Oregon.
For more information contact [email protected].
Sign language at Portland Playhouse courtesy of Oregon Art Beat.
Upcoming grant opportunities*
WESTAF ARP Deadline July 15
National Endowment for the Arts ARP Deadline Aug. 12
NEA Our Town Deadline Aug. 5
Oregon Humanities ARP Deadline Aug. 27
Oregon Arts Commission Arts Build Communities Deadline Oct. 1
Oregon Arts Commission Career Opportunity Grants Deadline Sept. 8
Oregon Arts Commission Arts Access Rolling Deadline
Oregon Cultural Trust Organizational and Professional Development Grants Quarterly Deadlines
*Included are current grant opportunities from other funders for your information and convenience. Be aware that you may apply to multiple funding sources for American Rescue Plan funds as long as you request funds for different eligible expenses in each application. The details on how the $50 million in ARP funds awarded by the state of Oregon will be distributed have yet to be finalized. 

The Art Inspector: Saving the Earth by Changing Art

Danielle Siembieda-Gribben

Originally Posted at the Huffington Post: 02/27/2013 3:23 pm…But more relevant than ever today! Originally reposted by SOAR on 2/28/2013.

Creative industries have changed standards and best practices to adopt sustainable and environmental techniques in design and production. Architecture has adopted LEED Performance design into standard practice, and Industrial Design begins with thinking about the end of life of a product and how to leave the least amount of impact on the environment. Both of these industries fought for decades, since the 1970s, against changing habits, systems and academic content. Resistors during the transformation proclaimed they would all go out of business; it was impossible to get all stakeholders on board; and they didn’t want to be creatively strangled.

This shared history of transforming creative industry leads us to a problem we are facing within the Art world. Can artists change the way they create work to make a healthier planet? Personally, I believe so, however, with the inclusion of all key players from the art world, including: art institutions, art media, academia, retailer/manufacturers, collectors and artists. Art seeds culture and influences public behavior. If artists can change their standard of practice then the rest of the world will follow.

Art Inspector assessing quilters studio. Photo by Wendy Crockett.

How is this transformation possible? Incorporating a triangle approach to such transformation is The Art Inspector, a social practice artwork I founded during my candidacy for a Masters in Fine Arts at San Jose State University, uses a Healthy Art Program (education), Legislative Reform (advocacy) and Third Party Inspections (studio assessments). This project started a few years ago when I noticed fellow studio mates as well as the art school itself seemingly unconsciously teaching and using harmful applications and techniques, disposing of waste, and ineffectively ventilating rooms. I noticed piles of plastic thrown into dumpsters, studio lights left on for what seemed 24 hours at a time, and complete negligence when using harsh chemicals. In my studio, a rusty cabinet labeled “Store Harsh Chemicals Here,” written upon faded masking tape, hosted a dusty plastic binder labeled MSDS Sheets. Taking a closer look, I realized no one had taught me what Material Safety Data Sheets meant and how they might apply to what I do. I asked around to other artists what they might know about these sheets and what they thought about what they were using and how they were disposing of extra material. Many artists noted that they knew someone, or had experienced themselves, long term health problems from misuse of chemicals in the creation of artwork. Most artists intuitively believed that there was a better way to develop their work and acknowledge the harm of some of the materials, but did not know what to do about it or did not see change as a high priority.

Inspired by artworks using methods of Intervention Art which take on the roles and aesthetics of corporations and disrupt systems in unexpected ways, such as the Yes Men and Luther Thie, I decided to become an Art Inspector. Within construction and manufacturing, unaffiliated auditors determine if a building or product can be certified as sustainable. If deemed so, doors open for prospective buyers and subsidies. I wanted to take this method to the Art World.

But how does a third party inspection work? There are at least two inspections to take place. The initial inspection starts with an intake form that asks questions to each artist about their studio environment, materials they are using, and the type of machines or equipment that use power. During this process a series of tests are conducted using similar equipment used for energy audits in residential homes. The Art Inspector tests power outlets, lighting and occupancy, ventilation and Volatile Organic Compounds. Once the inspection process is finished, The Art Inspector will write up a report based on the data collected and make suggestions for alternatives and improvements to artists studios and the working process. If the artist makes the recommended modifications, The Art Inspector will return for a re-inspection and award a Healthy Art Certification if the artist passes.

Paint waste from inspection of painter’s studio. Photo by Wendy Crockett.

Artists who fail inspection or those who are interested in diving deeper into changing their habits can join the Healthy Art Program. Various workshops ranging from green materials, sustainable wood products, energy efficiency, lighting and safety are available to artists at varying partner institutions. If the artists are supplied with resources and knowledge, they will be empowered to change. The final part of The Art Inspector is to advocate for change in policy and curriculum on both an institutional and government level. Working with academic and museum institutions to adopt new values and requirements for artworks to be created sustainably will create a shift in the resources for production of art. If a major contemporary art museum such as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art sets a standard for new works to be exhibited using a significant amount of low impact materials and works with third party agents such as The Art Inspector, then other practitioners will follow. With this same concept, Public Art Programs can adopt LEED standards into creation of artworks in the public realm.

Even today these concepts of change in the Art World are seen as radical and frightening to some. However, many artists are willing to do what they do best, experiment with new ideas. With the vision of The Art Inspector, we will open up the avenues to sustainable living, healthy living, and simultaneously, changing the way we make art.

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