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Art (& Science) Talk with Marguerite Perret

July 30, 2012 by Whitney Dail Marguerite Perret working at the Grant Museum, University College London. Photo courtesy of the artist. “At different times I am some combination of colleague, collaborator, educator, mentor, facilitator, archivist, witness, and activist. And all of those roles are part of my way of being an artist.” —Marguerite Perret Marguerite […]

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Postcard from Arkansas and Kansas, Part Two

March 26, 2012 by Rocco Landesman Here I am with Saralyn Reece Hardy, who directed the NEA’s museums and visual arts programs from 1999-2002. Saralyn’s now the director of the Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas. Photo courtesy of the Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas As I […]

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Art Talk with Cynthia Schira

March 15, 2012 By Rebecca Gross Variation by Cynthia Schira. Photo by Neal Keach Throughout her 40-year career as a textile artist, Cynthia Schira has taken her interest in cyphers and notations and woven them into exquisite pieces, many of which now grace the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery, and […]

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Remembering Gwendolyn Brooks

March 14, 2012 Edited by Paulette Beete Gwendolyn Brooks reads at the Miami Book Fair International, 1985. Photo via Miami Dade College archives on Wikipedia Commons “Does man love Art? Man visits Art, but squirms./ Art hurts. Art urges voyages—/ and it is easier to stay at home…” — Gwendolyn Brooks, from “The Chicago Picasso” […]

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2011 Retreat ~ Friday Booking & Farewells

While state legislative sessions are just getting underway in the new year, perpetual campaigning for the election is no doubt leaving everyone already feeling cranky and cynical (or is that just me?). But take heart, advocates! Despite the cornucopia of GOP candidate positions on public arts funding—ranging anywhere from mild tolerance to total abhorrence—President Obama […]

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The Arts Aren’t in Kansas Anymore, Toto

Why publicly support the arts when the debt’s hitting its head against a $14 trn ceiling and unemployment’s at 9 percent? America’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $166.2 bn in economic activity every year, incuding $63.1 bn in spending by organizations (twice as much as aerospace) plus $103.1 billion in event-related spending by audiences, supporting 5.7 million jobs nationally and generating $29.6 bn in government revenue. The for-profit and non-profit culture industry generates nearly $30 bn in revenue to local, state and federal governments every year. The three levels of government collectively spend less than $4 bn annually to support arts and culture — a spectacular 7:1 return on investment; try getting that in mutual funds.

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Kansas Makes a Fashion Statement

Once again, Kansas has distinguished itself as a “trendsetter.” Yes, those are the words of Kansas Governor Brownback when he refers to his action to eliminate the Kansas Arts Commission and put in place a private foundation to fund the arts in Kansas. Sorry to break the news governor, but those of us who live […]

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What’s the Matter with Kansas?: Hurting the Small, But Mighty Organizations

For those of us who call Kansas home we have one more opportunity to suffer Thomas Frank’s oft-quoted book, What’s the Matter with Kansas?. Mid-America Arts Alliance (M-AAA), my organization, has been struggling for months with how to handle the elimination of the Kansas Arts Commission (KAC) since this situation is unprecedented in the 47-year […]

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Kansas: To the Stars Through Difficulties

The recent events in the Kansas state government were like “déjà vu all over again” for those of us in Topeka. In 2005, our city council decided that our local arts council would no longer receive funding from the general budget, or any budget for that matter. In response, the Topeka Community Foundation moved ahead […]

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Kansas: Unexpected Attempt at Veto Override Unsuccessful

Yesterday, members of the Kansas House of Representatives unexpectedly attempted to override Gov. Brownback’s line item veto of funding for the Kansas Arts Commission, but the body fell short of the needed votes to do so. Here are more details from the Associated Press: “The vote in the House was 50-44. But legislators who wanted […]

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