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Tuning Up: On place… who’s here and why

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...


With art and advocacy, Native American women in SC are saying, 'We are still here' "Its goal, said commission CEO Terence Lilly Little Water, was to show people that Native American women exist here in South Carolina. And — like other indigenous women around the country — they’re fighting to raise awareness of issues that disproportionately affect their communities.

'We have some extraordinarily talented artists who deserve to have their voices heard,” she said. “Art is a form of using your voice.'" (Read Emily Williams' full story in the Charleston Post & Courier here.)

Along the same lines, "Tuning Up" also presents this story about Americans thriving where they are and not moving all over like we did in the 1980's and 1990's:

Americans have stopped moving, and it could dramatically affect society

"This narrative that Americans are constantly moving within the country is no longer true.

Over the last 35 years, the number of Americans who have moved—within their county, state, or out of state—has steadily declined to nearly half of their previous levels... Rootedness has many positive outcomes, such as greater attachment to place and more meaningful social and community connections. These connections to place may then serve to provide social and economic support during periods of economic uncertainty." (Read Thomas Cooke's full story in Quartz here.)

Not to add to Cooke's report, but the S.C. Arts Commission's program Art of Community: Rural SC is showing that rural communities, often the biggest victims of migration to larger towns and (usually) cities (and their suburbs and exurbs) are rallying. Leading the charge are often artists, who are proving more and more by the day that they can remain in place and be successful themselves while helping lead revitalization.

Submitted material

NEA offers summertime learning

Arts-centric learning opportunities abounds

The National Endowment for the Arts, a major funder of the S.C. Arts Commission, is offering an abundance of varied learning opportunities this summer. Read on to learn more!

Citizens’ institute on Rural Design: Call for Applications from Rural and Tribal Communities!

Office hours through Facebook: June 18, 6-7 p.m. ET & July 10, 1-2 p.m. ET The National Endowment for the Arts is pleased to announce that the Request for Applications from communities is open now until July 22! The Citizens’ Institute on Rural Design™ will continue its tradition of offering local design workshops that address specific community challenges, and also create a new cohort learning program that will engage rural leaders from up to 20 additional communities. All rural communities of 50,000 or less are eligible to apply for the CIRD local workshop and learning cohort opportunities. We encourage applications from nonprofits, tribal or municipal governments, regional planning organizations, and other community partners. We hope to hear from a variety of rural communities from a wide range of backgrounds, geographies, and capacities. If you are a rural service provider, please share this opportunity widely with colleagues and community leaders in rural areas who might be interested in applying. The Citizens' Institute on Rural Design™ is a National Endowment for the Arts leadership initiative in partnership with the Housing Assistance Council and buildingcommunityWORKSHOP.

Navigating Your Arts Career: Resources & Financial Tools for People with Disabilities

June 19, 2019 | Register Join the National Endowment for the Arts and Art Beyond Sight on June 19, 2019, from 3-4:15 p.m. ET, for the second in a series of six webinars promoting careers in the arts for people with disabilities. This webinar series is part of a toolkit, designed to help expand employment and career development opportunities for disabled people as artists and cultural workers, which will be launched later this year. This webinar, “Navigating your Arts Career: Resources and Financial Tools for People with Disabilities”, will address some of the barriers people with disabilities find when pursuing a career in the arts. Hear a panel of experts address the burning questions people with disabilities have when seeking careers in the arts, including how to maintain crucial public benefits while working in the arts or how to transition to work. Join experts for an interactive discussion. Host: Andy Arias, actor and Policy Advisor, Office of Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor Speakers will include:

Our Town

Deadline: Aug. 8, 2019 New guidelines now online Webinar: June 24, 2019 Our Town is the National Endowment for the Arts’ creative placemaking grants program. These grants support projects that integrate arts, culture, and design activities into efforts that strengthen communities by advancing local economic, physical, and/or social outcomes. Arts Endowment staff will conduct a webinar to share tips on how to ensure an Our Town application is clear and compelling on June 24.

Creating a State Data Culture to Inform Investments in Arts Education

Tuesday, June 25, 2 p.m. EDT | Register Speakers will include:
  • Ayanna N. Hudson, director, Arts Education for the National Endowment for the Arts
  • Claus von Zastrow, Ph.D., principal, Education Commission of the States
Join a webinar to examine a collaboration between the National Endowment for the Arts and Education Commission of the States to build states’ capacity to report on the arts education data they collect. The webinar will focus on the current climate for such work in states, strategies and tools for supporting state-level data efforts, and the value of incorporating arts education data into broader efforts to promote a culture of information in states.

Art Works

Deadline: July 11, 2019 (for projects beginning no earlier than June 1, 2020) Art Works is the National Endowment for the Arts’ principal grants program. Through project-based funding, we support public engagement with, and access to, various forms of excellent art across the nation, the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, learning in the arts at all stages of life, and the integration of the arts into the fabric of community life. Matching grants generally will range from $10,000 to $100,000.

Strengthening Southern communities with the arts

Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit coming to S.C.

As our communities become more diverse, they may also become more divided. Creative placemaking provides ways to build bridges across these differences in hopes of more inclusive, connected, and resilient places.
Join South Arts, the National Consortium for Creative Placemaking, and ArtPlace America in Columbia April 16-18, 2019 to explore how arts and cultural programming can bring people closer together! How can creative placemaking foster public-private partnerships that magnify positive impact in communities? Among the variety of types of partnerships, we would be particularly interested in examples of public/private partnerships that include visionary involvement by mayors or city leadership. This theme encompasses case studies from the region and practical skills that can be applied to build productive alliances.

Scholarships are available

Application deadline: Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019 South ArtsSouth Arts is offering a limited number of scholarships up to $500.00 to organizations within the Southern region to offset registration fees and travel/lodging costs associated with conference attendance. South Arts encourages organizations to send teams of two or more to the conference, including representatives of arts/culture organizations and others (city government, Main Street, community development agencies, higher education, etc.) who may be likely partners in creative placemaking efforts. Awards are limited to one scholarship per organization. Preference will be given to attendees from small and rural communities.

Note: Population of 50,000 or below is one standard definition of rural. For this program, South Arts will use this as a guidepost only; applicants may describe why their community should be considered small or rural.

South Carolinians can apply for these scholarships directly through South Arts.

AMP [Your City] … with a grant for free concerts

The Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards is an exciting matching grant program bringing the joy of free, live music to small and mid-sized towns and cities across the country to revitalize public spaces and bring people together.

  • Grants will be awarded to up to 15 U.S.-based nonprofit organizations serving towns and cities with populations of up to 400,000.
  • Each grantee will receive $25K in matching funds to present the Levitt AMP [Your City] Music Series, a minimum of 10 free outdoor concerts presented over 10 to 12 consecutive weeks during 2019.
  • Each Levitt AMP Music Series will feature a musically diverse lineup of high caliber entertainment, in keeping with the permanent Levitt venue program.
  • To ensure each grantee is positioned for success, grantees will receive a Levitt AMP Toolkit containing valuable resources, such as: sample artist contract; sample press release; hosted series pages on the Levitt AMP website; eblast and social media templates; list of talent managers and music agents from across the country; sample sponsorship packet; and consultation with national staff at the Levitt Foundation.
Go here to learn more about how to win a $25k matching grant. Or, watch this video:  

Sign up to vote

Reflecting our mission that all Levitt projects be community-driven, we're once again opening the grant selection process to YOU! So spread the word and rally your family, friends, colleagues and neighbors to vote for your favorite 2019 Levitt AMP proposals.An online public voting process in November will determine the Top 25 finalists. The Levitt Foundation will review the Top 25 proposals and up to 15 selected winners will be announced on Dec. 18, 2018. Sign up to vote here.

About

The Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation is dedicated to reinvigorating America’s public spaces through creative placemaking and creating opportunities for everyone to experience the performing arts. The need for more third places—those informal gathering spots outside the realms of home and the workplace—has become increasingly clear in today’s world and guides us in our community-driven efforts. Our goal is to reflect the best of American city life by creating community and social interaction among people of all ages and backgrounds; empowering cities across America to reclaim green spaces and reinvigorate public spaces; and ensuring the performing arts are accessible to all through high quality, free concerts.

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South Arts grants support “Southern Creative Places”

South Arts, a nonprofit regional arts organization serving nine Southern states, has announced $78,189 in grants to 18 communities in the region. South Arts LogoThese grants, made possible through funding from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Georgia Council for the Arts, support the planning and execution of creative placemaking projects predominantly in small and rural communities in the South. “Creative placemaking uses arts and culture to activate and animate communities,” said Susie Surkamer, executive director of South Arts. “Creative placemaking puts arts, culture and creativity at the center of planning and problem-solving. It brings people and partners together to design creative solutions to community challenges using arts and culture as catalysts. The results can be more connected communities, enhanced quality of life, more economic opportunities, and the showcasing of a community’s most unique characteristics.” The grants, which must be matched by the recipient organization, support organizations in South Arts’ region. Organizations applied this spring and were recently notified of their status. “In our new strategic plan, South Arts has made a commitment to address the evolving needs of Southern communities through impactful arts-based programs,” continued Surkamer. “Supporting these creative placemaking efforts – from a small-business incubator for creative entrepreneurs to public art projects embracing civic pride and even a project using the arts to promote healthy eating and locally-grown produce – is an important step in serving the cross-sector needs of our region through the arts.” The Southern Creative Places grant program represents South Arts’ first programmatic offering in the arena of creative placemaking, following up on its successful co-sponsorship of the Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit in March 2018 in Chattanooga. For more information about opportunities from South Arts, visit www.southarts.org.


About South Arts South Arts advances Southern vitality through the arts. The nonprofit regional arts organization was founded in 1975 to build on the South’s unique heritage and enhance the public value of the arts. South Arts’ work responds to the arts environment and cultural trends with a regional perspective. South Arts offers an annual portfolio of activities designed to support the success of artists and arts providers in the South, address the needs of Southern communities through impactful arts-based programs, and celebrate the excellence, innovation, value and power of the arts of the South. For more information, visit www.southarts.org.
S.C. Grant Recipients
  • The Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg received a $5,000 grant to establish a cultural center in the majority Hispanic community of Arcadia.
  • The City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs received a $5,000 grant to implement the conNECKted Too project, pairing artists with tiny businesses in an isolated part of Charleston.
  • Fresh Future Farm, Inc. in Charleston received a $3,038 grant for a community mural project celebrating community history and promoting healthy, locally-grown foods.
  • The Holly Springs Center in Pickens received a $4,365 grant to present a festival of Appalachian arts on the grounds of a former school.
  • The Town of Estill received a $3,375 grant to create a mural celebrating diversity.

Using arts and culture to address rural community needs

Colleton MuseumArt of Community: Rural S.C. is the Arts Commission's initiative to support new leadership, generate energy, and motivate action to address the unique needs of rural communities in our state. The program empowers new local leaders who offer fresh perspectives and energy with new resources to reimagine their communities through an arts and culture lens and drive action. It received national attention last month for a success story in Walterboro (right), but the work is just getting into gear. And there's still plenty to do. South Arts, a consortium of Southern state arts agencies, is inviting arts and cultural leaders, public officials, community leaders, organizational decision-makers, and municipal and economic planners from the Southeast – and beyond –  to Chattanooga, Tenn. for the first Southeastern Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit, March 15-16. Creative placemaking goes "Beyond Big Cities" with a special focus on small and rural communities in the American South. Attendees will dig into the ways arts and culture can be deployed to address the challenges of communities outside urban areas. A stellar lineup of sessions and presenters is to take on themes such as:

  • community wellness,
  • diversity and inclusion,
  • maintaining affordable places,
  • and strategies for areas of consistent poverty.
Chattanooga and its region offer a wide variety of local demonstration projects involving art in unused spaces, water features, historical spaces, sculpture parks and other public art, making it an ideal place to explore successful examples creative placemaking to inspire your work at home. Who should attend?
  • Artists
  • Arts professionals
  • Local government planners and officials
  • Community developers
  • Anyone interested in building vital communities through arts and culture
Go here for more information. You'll learn and generate the ideas that could turn your community into the next South Carolina Cultural District by using arts and culture to draw or retain talent that drives tourism and economic development in your town.

Tuning Up: Creative Placemaking, Gullah Geechee in Philadelphia, more

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers 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...


  • You'll be hearing more from us about this, but we have to start somewhere. South Arts is presenting the "Beyond Big Cities" Southern Creative Placemaking Conference in Chattanooga, Tenn. next month. This is the place to be for civic/arts leaders interesting in leveraging the creative assets in rural communities and small towns to attract and retain residents, creatives and businesses, and bring visitors to experience the unique nature of your place.
  • The Gullah Geechee remain in the spotlight, this time as Aunt Pearlie Sue and the Gullah Kinfolk take the story of Gullah Geechees to the City of Brotherly Love for a free performance at Villanova University. The performance will recognize the important link between Philadelphia and the Sea Islands of S.C. during slavery and Reconstruction. Group leader Anita Singleton-Prather is a Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award winner and an acclaimed musician, storyteller, and actress.
  • Verner Award recipients Jonathan Green (2010) and William Starrett (2002) rekindle a collaboration that took Green's paintings (right) Off the Wall and Onto the Stage with Columbia City Ballet when they reprise the critically acclaimed ballet at Township Auditorium in Columbia this Friday and in Charleston Saturday, March 3.
  • And finally, a hearty congratulations to Arts Commission Chairman Henry Horowitz for receiving the Buck Mikel Leadership Award from the Greenville Chamber of Commerce.

Charleston Rhizome Collective first SC recipient of national ArtPlace America grant

[caption id="attachment_33275" align="alignright" width="270"] Charleston Rhizome Collective leaders with City of Charleston Cultural Affairs Director Scott Watson and Mayor John Tecklenburg[/caption] A Charleston grassroots organization is the first South Carolina recipient of a highly competitive national grant from ArtPlace America. The Charleston Rhizome Collective will receive $300,000 for the conNECKtedTOO project to help address the needs of small and tiny businesses using installations, visuals, forums, a tour, an app-based interactive map and a youth entrepreneurship program. conNECKtedTOO will create a solidarity hub and network linking tiny neighborhood businesses to consolidate buying and selling power and engage residents in decisions over business ownership, loans, job training, hiring practices, wholesale prices, schooling and housing. ArtPlace’s National Creative Placemaking Fund invests money in community development projects where artists, arts organizations, and arts and culture activity work to strengthen communities across 10 sectors of community planning and development. ArtPlace received 987 applications this year, and after narrowing the field to 70 finalists, selected conNECKtedTOO as one of only 23 projects that will receive a total of $8.7 million in funding. The 23 projects represent communities of all sizes across 18 states and one U.S. territory, with almost 52 percent of this year’s funded projects taking place in rural communities. The South Carolina Arts Commission has been actively promoting this opportunity for the past five years and working with organizations interested in applying, according to Executive Director Ken May. “The ArtPlace application is a rigorous and competitive process; many South Carolina organizations have applied and only a few have made it to the finalist level. Clearly, conNECKtedTOO had the right ingredients—authenticity, local engagement, artistic sensibility and a compelling need—to bring home this prestigious award. Congratulations to the Collective for being the first South Carolina organization to join the cadre of creative place making efforts funded by ArtPlace America.” ArtPlace Director of National Grantmaking F. Javier Torres visited South Carolina to present workshops about the grant opportunity and conduct site visits. “This year’s investments highlight critical dimensions of creative placemaking strategy that can provide great inspiration to communities across the country," said Torres. "We are deeply excited to announce these 23 new investments as our seventh cohort of funded projects through the National Creative Placemaking Fund.” For conNECKtedTOO, the Charleston Rhizome Collective will work with partners such as Jason Gourdine of the Black Collective, the South Carolina Association for Community Economic Development, the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs and several tiny businesses. “All of Charleston commends the conNECKted team on their ArtPlace America award,” said Charleston Mayor John J. Tecklenburg. “Their past projects and recent efforts build confidence that the arts can be effectively put to work in new and creative ways to sustain and strengthen our local communities.” Find out more about the 2017 funded projects here. About The Charleston Rhizome Collective Based in Charleston, South Carolina, the Charleston Rhizome Collective is an art-in/with community group, where education, art and activism intersect. By design, it is grassroots, inter-racial and inter-generational. Through the arts, the Collective aims to amplify the voices of neighborhoods absent from public and private plans: social, cultural and economic. About ArtPlace America ArtPlace America (ArtPlace) is a ten-year collaboration among 16 partner foundations, along with 8 federal agencies and 6 financial institutions, that works to position arts and culture as a core sector of comprehensive community planning and development in order to help strengthen the social, physical, and economic fabric of communities. ArtPlace focuses its work on creative placemaking, projects in which art plays an intentional and integrated role in place-based community planning and development. This brings artists, arts organizations, and artistic activity into the suite of placemaking strategies pioneered by Jane Jacobs and her colleagues, who believed that community development must be locally informed, human-centric, and holistic. For more information visit www.ArtPlaceAmerica.org

Estill group embracing opportunities with Art of Community: Rural SC

(Image: The Art of Community: Rural S.C. team serving the Estill community. Shown, l to r: Audrey Hopkins-Williams, Deon Martin, Maude Saunders, Loretta B. Beckett, and Vonzetta Strong. Team members not pictured: Jacqueline Hopkins and Egeria Bostick.) In Estill, South Carolina, a small group of local citizens has embraced a new opportunity to make a positive contribution to the community through involvement with the South Carolina Arts Commission. For several months, Audrey Hopkins-Williams has been leading a team of individuals to consider which issues local citizens face and how arts and culture might be incorporated to address one or more of those challenges. Last spring, when the South Carolina Arts Commission reached out about a pilot program, The Art of Community: Rural S.C., Hopkins-Williams answered the call. Today, as part of the Art of Community initiative, she and her team are celebrating the creation of a plan to add arts and culture to the Estill Nature Walking Trail and engage more citizens in use of the park. [caption id="attachment_29095" align="alignright" width="300"]Estill Park Partnering with the Parks and Recreation Division of the Town of Estill, the local team is exploring ideas to help promote a more healthy community at the 1st Street park site.[/caption] “We know that this park is an asset and that health issues are major concerns here,” she said. “We asked ourselves, ‘can we add some elements to the park that will get people here and help them become more active?’” Hopkins-Williams and her team are considering the variety of ingredients that may fit the bill—from a performance series featuring storytellers to new play equipment that encourages creativity in children. “We don’t have all the answers yet, but we are looking at what keeps people from using the park. What can change the dynamic?” To aid in the development of the arts and culture “ingredients,” the South Carolina Arts Commission made a $1,000 award to help the local team design the project and solicit additional funds. “We are also pleased to have donations from the Martin Funeral Home of Estill, the Hampton County Sheriff’s Department, Maude Saunders of Gordon Logging Company and Mt. Moriah Worship Center of Furman,” she said. “We have just begun to see how the arts make change in communities—already we are being more creative in planning this project and getting people involved in the process.” The Estill team includes Jackie Hopkins, Maude Saunders, Loretta B. Beckett, Vonzetta Strong and Egeria Bostick. While Hopkins-Williams is serving as the “maven,” or connector, for Hampton County, five additional leaders were identified to serve as team mavens in Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Colleton and Jasper counties. Since June, these leaders and their team members have participated in a series of regional meetings. “We are so happy to know more citizens of Hampton County through this project,” South Carolina Arts Commission Program Director Susan DuPlessis said. “Not only have we built new relationships in Estill, we are also building a regional network of citizens who are community builders. We are exploring ways that arts and culture can be used to engage people, to rediscover each community’s assets, and to build on those assets.” Part of the strength of the Art of Community is its connectivity both within the state and beyond. The initiative is informed by a committee of 24 advisors who hail from around the country and from South Carolina. Dr. Ann Carmichael, dean of USC Salkehatchie, and John Robert “Bob” Reeder co-chair the advisory committee. “This initiative is an example of how a state arts commission re-imagines arts and culture within the communities they serve,” said Reeder, a native of Rock Hill, S.C., and program director for Rural LISC, a national community development intermediary working in 44 states. “This effort is being recognized nationally as innovative. Its unique approach—starting with the partnership between a state arts agency and a Promise Zone—is getting well-deserved attention and building new relationships and engagement within small communities.” The Arts Commission received funding from USDA Rural to start this program in South Carolina’s rural Promise Zone in 2015. “As an official partner of the Promise Zone effort and as investors in South Carolina communities through grants, assistance and programming, we are extremely interested in challenges our communities face,” said Ken May, South Carolina Arts Commission executive director. The range of community development issues that have been discussed include health, housing, transportation, safety, environment, economic and workforce development and education. The initiative has also asked the participants to identify what makes them proud of their communities. “This begins with ‘what works,’ ‘what characteristics do you love about your town,’ and ‘what makes you feel connected.’ The best part is that we are working with the community teams—what happens is born out of local ideas and creativity. It’s exciting and inspiring to watch,” said May. Hopkins-Williams advises her local community to “stay tuned. We’re on it!” Anyone interested in becoming part of the Hampton County local team should call Audrey Hopkins-Williams at 843-943-8591.

Free creative placemaking guide available from National Endowment for the Arts

NEA Creative PlacemakingThe National Endowment for the Arts has published How to Do Creative Placemaking: An Action-Oriented Guide to Arts in Community Development. The book features 28 essays from thought leaders active in arts-based community development, as well as 13 case studies of projects funded through the NEA’s creative placemaking program, Our Town. How to Do Creative Placemaking is intended as a primer for those interested in bringing the arts to the community development table as a tool—along with housing, transportation, public health and other sectors—to advance revitalization efforts in an authentic way. The book is available for free (as a hard copy or PDF download.) “The book is meant to help people start working with the arts to make their place better,” says NEA Director of Design and Creative Placemaking Jason Schupbach, “We wanted to create something easy to use and full of options for communities to begin doing this work, or to improve what they have already started.” The book is divided into six chapters, “Inclusive Planning + Equitable Development,” “Economic Opportunity,” “Community Identity + Belonging,” “Arts + Government,” “Arts + Physical Infrastructure,” and “Arts + Community Development Organizations.” A sample of the essays: • “Five Lessons Learned for a Successful Public Art Project,” by Americans for the Arts’ Patricia Walsh • “Can Arts Drive Rural Economic Development?” by USDA Rural Development’s Chris Beck and the International Sonoran Desert Alliance’s Tracy Taft • “Ethics of Development: A Shared Sense of Place,” by the National Association of Latino Arts and Culture’s María Lopez de León • “How Can a Planning Authority Work with an Artist to Improve Public Health Outcomes for Residents?” by the City of Fargo, North Dakota’s Nichole Crutchfield Since 2011, the NEA has awarded more than $30 million to support 389 Our Town projects in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Via: National Endowment for the Arts