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Tuning Up: Additional ArtsReady resources + arts and justice

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers curated, quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


After the storm. Though we're keenly aware of Hurricane Florence's effects on communities in the Pee Dee and northern Grand Strand, most of South Carolina was spared relative to what was expected when our offices closed on Tuesday last week. In addition to the resources we posted last week, two new ones came to our attention thanks to the S.C. Arts Alliance. While ArtsReady issues are still pretty top of mind, develop a plan now so you don't have to scramble later.
  1. The Performing Arts Readiness (PAR) Project, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, offers grants to arts organizations to develop emergency plans and continuity of operations plans. The National Coalition for Arts Preparedness & Emergency Response (NCAPER) is taking over the Arts Ready component, and working on a simpler online tool to develop such plans. The PAR website also has recorded webinars that we have been producing on different areas of readiness as well as the grant guidelines.
  2. The NCAPER website is being developed but currently has a webpage on Americans for the Arts' website. You can download a PDF of the Cultural Placekeeping Guide which was published by NCAPER after Hurricane Sandy.

The arts on social justice. We switch gears now to another hot topic: social justice. Here are two arts-related items on the topic in South Carolina:
  1. The Columbia Museum of Art is to hold For Freedoms Town Hall: Freedom of Expression – Arts and Justice, a free event in participation with For Freedoms’ 50 State Initiative, on Monday, Sept. 24, at 6:30 p.m. A panel of artistic and legal experts will discuss this First Amendment right from artistic, local, and global perspectives. Serving on the panel are poet, Verner Award winner, and 2011 National Book Award winner Nikky Finney and Trustus Theatre Artistic Director Chad Henderson. For Freedoms is a national platform for greater engagement in the arts and in civil society. Inspired by Norman Rockwell’s 1943 paintings of the four universal freedoms articulated by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1941: freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.
  2. Photographer Antonio Modesto (right), who received a grant for his work from Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg (an SCAC grantee!), was in the CCC spotlight for his "Faces of the Upstate" project. It provides insights into the lives of Upstate South Carolina's unique and often marginalized residents.

Are you ArtsReady?

Hurricane Florence is approaching the East Coast and will likely have landfall Thursday or Friday. Gov. Henry McMaster declared a state of emergency. Coastal S.C. counties are to begin evacuating at noon Tuesday, and schools as far inland as Lexington County are closing to provide shelters and buses to assist in evacuation procedures. Read more here. While Florence's path remains difficult to predict, artists and arts organizations in South Carolina should anticipate impact and prepare accordingly.

Bonus content: South Carolina Emergency Management Division

If you have an ArtsReady/readiness plan, we hope that triggering it into action provides you with the ability to prepare for the storm. If not, we encourage you to take a few basic steps to prepare your office/venue/studio for the potential impact before departing for your personal preparation - unless you are under an evacuation order, in which case you should follow the instructions of local/state officials immediately. If you aren’t in the hurricane’s path, please use this time to take a look at your own readiness planning in the event of a future emergency. Visit ArtsReady to start or build upon your readiness plan; sign up for free webinars on a variety of readiness and disaster planning offered through the Performing Arts Readiness project; and sign up to get regular information on grants, trainings and programs to improve your organization’s readiness and resiliency (much of this project’s content is relevant to arts organizations and artists of all disciplines).

Be prepared!

Please use and share the following resources to ensure you are ready: HENFT Hurricane Preparedness Tips for Cultural Institutions Cerf+'s Resources for Artists: A few additional tips for arts organizations:
  • Assign a readiness/emergency leader for your organization through whom all communications and information should be relayed. Decide who makes the decision about suspending operations/events, and how those decisions are communicated.
  • Ensure you can carry out banking activity remotely, and that staff can work remotely if your offices/facility are inaccessible.
  • If practical, de-install exhibits that may be threatened by weather or water and remove to a safer location.
  • Secure outdoor sculptures, furniture, bike racks, signage, etc. – anything that can become a projectile in strong winds.
  • Move costumes, scenery, instruments, valuable equipment and collections that are in areas vulnerable to flooding (i.e., the floor, the basement) or susceptible to rain (near windows or under roofs) out of harm’s way.
Weather event resources: If your facility is impacted, there are a number of resources to assist you: https://www.artsready.org/home/public_article/887 And more resources are listed at https://www.lyrasis.org/LYRASIS%20Digital/Pages/Preservation%20Services/Disaster%20Resources/Response-and-Recovery.aspx
Thanks to our colleagues at South Arts for much of the content above.