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Major new funding initiative to illuminate underrepresented narratives

Foundation's grants to fund Lowcountry collections

Application deadline: Friday, March 26, 2021

The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation (the Foundation) announced the launch of a major new collections funding initiative to help museums, libraries, and other collecting organizations bring forward new and recovered narratives within its two geographies: Chicago and the Lowcountry of South Carolina.

The Foundation has allocated $750,000 for grants to organizations whose collections illustrate BIPOC communities, LGBTQ+ perspectives, working-class narratives, small community experiences, as well as other underrepresented groups and viewpoints. Emerging, compelling, underrepresented perspectives reflective of collections in the areas of science, public health and the natural world also are eligible. Any Chicago or Lowcountry based non-profit organization with a relevant collection is encouraged to learn more about the strategy at gddf.org. The first deadline for applications is March 26, 2021. Collections traditionally have ensured that stories are preserved, added to, revisited, and reconsidered in context of the past, the present, and the future. Some narratives, however, have been less valued or overlooked because of decisions based—consciously or subconsciously—on race, gender, sexual identity, educational background, economic or social status, or because they are perceived to be unpopular, divisive or outside the conventional thinking of the day. This new funding initiative is designed to be part of a new way forward in collections thinking as it shifts focus from the care and processing of material objects to the telling of broader and more inclusive narratives and perspectives through collections. “The launch of this ‘broadening narratives’ initiative arrives serendipitously as our country faces a historic moment of social justice reawakening and a compelling need for these trusted institutions to engage with the public on science-based realities, whether Covid-19 or climate change,” said David Farren, executive director of the Foundation. “With this new strategy, we will recognize and be responsive to the emerging opportunities, challenges, and narratives of both the Lowcountry and Chicago regions.” Chicago’s broad tapestry of ethnic groups is reflective of the city’s industrial and commercial history and the immigration and migration it sparked, while the Lowcountry’s history is rooted in the country’s oldest experiences of race and power. Applicants for the new funding will be asked to demonstrate how the proposed effort may add to these regional narratives and amplify overlooked voices and perspectives from the past, contribute to a better informed present, or lead to a more inclusive, sustainable and healthier future.
An organization will be eligible to apply as long as collections are a significant part of their mission—though it need not be their primary mission—and they have resources dedicated to the ongoing care, management, and sharing of the collection. Those who work with the collections may include creatives, individual artists, curators, historians, teachers, social activists, researchers, scientists, and more, though grants will be made only to organizations. For over three years, the Foundation has convened five advisory groups to assist with the formation of this new funding initiative by providing important feedback, keeping the Foundation apprised of trends in the field, and serving as valuable connectors and conveners. The groups include Black Metropolis Research Consortium, Chicago Collections Consortium, Chicago Cultural Alliance, the College of Charleston’s Lowcountry Digital Library, and the Southeastern Museums Conference. “Working with the Foundation on this strategy has highlighted the value of collaboration and deliberation among diverse collections organizations and their potential to amplify marginalized voices,” said Marcia Walker-McWilliams, executive director of Black Metropolis Research Consortium. “There is an urgent need for more inclusive and informed spaces of engagement within the field. We have worked tirelessly to discover where this new initiative is needed most, and are eager to carry those discoveries into the next phase with our fellow advisory groups and the Foundation.” “The opportunity to work with Donnelley Foundation staff and a diverse group of professionals who shared a common passion for arts, culture, preservation and inclusive narratives was truly rewarding. The conversation, camaraderie, equity and acceptance of all voices among our working group helped define the 'broadening narratives' strategy,” said Zinnia Willits, executive director, Southeastern Museums Conference. “As a museum professional, my own concept of collection preservation was expanded by this initiative as the process evolved to place collection care in a much broader context. I am excited to see how institutions reconsider the art and artifacts they hold and develop projects that offer opportunities to reveal untold histories that deserve to be shared broadly, create connections between museums and the communities they serve and develop lasting connections and intentional communities of practice among those who have the great privilege to preserve, protect and amplify these diverse histories.”

Jason Rapp

Marketing arts orgs through, beyond COVID

Best practices webinars start next week


Along the lines of its concurrent webinar series on organizational fiscal sustainability, the South Carolina Arts Alliance has another lined up to benefit groups it serves.

In partnership with Greenville marketing and web firm Engenius, yesterday they announced another free webinar series for arts organizations focused on marketing best practices as arts organizations move through and beyond the pandemic. The webinars are useful for arts organizations of all sizes, but the SCAA says on its website that small to medium organizations might find the most benefit. Details and registration links are below for each webinar. Like the financial webinar series, the marketing series is free thanks to funding from S.C. Arts Alliance partners the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and S.C. Arts Commission.

Session topics and dates

  1. Marketing When Closed: How to Keep Attendees Engaged
    • Thursday, May 14
    • 2 p.m.
  2. Communicating Once You’re Open: How to Speak to Different Audience Groups
    • Thursday, May 21
    • 2 p.m.
Details on these topics and registration are available by clicking here.

David Platts

Announcing SCAC Arts Emergency Relief grants

Applications open, April 29

Application deadline: Friday, May 15, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. ET


This is a critical update with vital information on assisting South Carolina arts and culture organizations and individual artists during, and as we emerge from, this time of crisis. First, I am happy to announce that as a result of tireless work by our team, South Carolina Arts Commission Arts Emergency Relief grants for organizations and individual artists will launch next week. The guidelines are available for review on our website now. Simply click here to access them. The application to apply for the Arts Emergency Relief grant will be open from Wednesday, April 29 through Friday, May 15. There will be a single user-friendly application which will ask which of the three eligible categories applies to you:
  • Arts organizations who ARE current (FY20) operating support grantees (General Operating Support, Operating Support for Small Organizations, and Statewide Operating Support)
  • Arts organizations who are NOT current (FY20) operating support grantees
  • Individual artists
Funding for organizations will be determined by their budget size. Individual artists are eligible to receive up to $1,000. I would like to express thanks to the South Carolina Arts Foundation and the donors to its South Carolina Artist Relief Fund campaign, which is helping to support the grants to artists. The recently-passed CARES Act provides funding to the National Endowment for the Arts and supports aid to arts and culture organizations nationwide. This relief may support salaries and administrative costs to the nonprofit arts sector in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes salary/fringe, rent/mortgage, and other operating expenses, but you may not duplicate emergency funds (for example, if you have received other emergency funds to cover rent, you may not also use this grant to cover rent). Again, I invite you to review the guidelines for our new Arts Emergency Relief grants here.
Second, the result of work with our partners at the South Carolina Arts Alliance and the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation is a free webinar series for South Carolina arts and culture organizations focused on financial best practices for moving beyond COVID-19. Thanks to our funding partners, leading nonprofit financial consulting firm FMA Consultants will lead these webinars beginning next week. Each 90-minute webinar will be hosted twice, with space limited to allow for manageable groups and Q&A. Session topics and dates:
  1. Understanding Financial Heath & Planning Ahead in a Time of Uncertainty Wednesday, April 29 (2:30 p.m.) OR Tuesday, May 5 (2 p.m.)
  2. Scenario Building & Contingency Planning Tuesday, May 12 (1 p.m.) OR Friday, May 15 (1 p.m.)
Learn more and register for these wonderful opportunities on the South Carolina Arts Alliance website by clicking here.
Today’s update marks significant progress toward helping practitioners of arts and culture find themselves as strong as possible when we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis. We at the S.C. Arts Commission have been strongly encouraged by your determination and innovation in finding ways to share through technology.  As always, we stand ready to assist you as we can.  

Jason Rapp

Video training for arts orgs announced

Getting ready to move beyond COVID-19


The South Carolina Arts Alliance and funding partners the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and S.C. Arts Commission are announcing a free webinar series for arts organizations focused on financial best practices for moving beyond the coronavirus. As our state begins to slowly turn back “on” local economies, arts organizations are left wondering how they can prioritize fiscal sustainability through the continuing economic crisis, all the way through to being prepared for events that may have similar impacts in the future. The SCAA engaged FMA Consultants, a leading nonprofit financial consulting firm, to conduct a two-part webinar series for arts groups across the state.
  • There is no charge to the organization thanks to the funding partners.
  • Each 90-minute webinar will be hosted twice.
  • Space will be limited to 50-60 participants per webinar to allow for manageable groups and Q&A.
Details and registration links are below for each webinar.

Session topics and dates

  1. Understanding Financial Heath & Planning Ahead in a Time of Uncertainty
    • Wednesday, April 29 | 2:30 p.m.
    • or Tuesday, May 5 | 2 p.m.
  2. Scenario Building & Contingency Planning
    • Tuesday, May 12 | 1 p.m.
    • or Friday, May 15 | 1 p.m.
Learn more and register for these opportunities on the South Carolina Arts Alliance website by clicking here.

Small-group financial management training for small arts orgs

Retooled, rebooted, and ready to help

Application deadline: Friday, December 13, 2019
(Ed. note: A version of this post originally ran in June, but scheduling conflicts with many of the groups ultimately caused the training to be canceled. The presenting partners, undaunted, are rebooting the process and trying to start round 2 again.) Yes, we help provide arts education opportunities. Yes, we help artists make sustainable arts careers. And yes, we also serve as a resource to strengthen community arts groups: your local theatre, dance company, orchestra, and the like. To that end, the S.C. Arts Commission is partnering with the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and the South Carolina Arts Alliance (which advocates for all the things mentioned above, and more, in the halls of power in Columbia and Washington) to present the second iteration of "A Stronger Bottom Line," a small-group cohort of small arts organizations getting unparalleled, tailored financial management training specific to the arts. The idea is to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of your organization's financial operations. But don't take our word for it. Here's what some participants from the first cohort had to say:

“What a productive and informative program.  I learned a great deal and am extremely confident that I can now provide a more thorough and necessary financial oversight and guidance for my organization. This program is immensely insightful. I wish everyone could have this opportunity.” - Footlight Players

“The SC Arts Alliance benefited greatly from this training. Our staff and board feel more confident in our ability to tell our financial story in a way that is transparent, meaningful, and useful. We highly recommend this training.” - S.C. Arts Alliance

This training is conducted by FMA Consultants. Here's who is eligible:
  • Only nonprofit grantees of the Donnelley Foundation and/or the S.C. Arts Commission.
  • Budget size < $1 million
  • Attendance by the executive director, plus lead finance staff or appropriate board member is required for each session. Commitment must be made with application.

Find out more and apply by going here.

 

Take 2: Want ‘A Stronger Bottom Line’ for your org?

The S.C. Arts Alliance can help

Application deadline: Friday, June 21, 2019
Yes, we help provide arts education opportunities. Yes, we help artists make sustainable arts careers. And yes, we also serve as a resource to strengthen community arts groups: your local theatre, dance company, orchestra, and the like. To that end, the S.C. Arts Commission is partnering with the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and the South Carolina Arts Alliance (which advocates for all the things mentioned above, and more, in the halls of power in Columbia and Washington) to present the second iteration of "A Stronger Bottom Line," a small-group cohort of small arts organizations getting unparalleled, tailored financial management training specific to the arts. The idea is to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of your organization's financial operations. But don't take our word for it. Here's what some participants from the first cohort had to say:

“What a productive and informative program.  I learned a great deal and am extremely confident that I can now provide a more thorough and necessary financial oversight and guidance for my organization. This program is immensely insightful. I wish everyone could have this opportunity.” - Footlight Players

“The SC Arts Alliance benefited greatly from this training. Our staff and board feel more confident in our ability to tell our financial story in a way that is transparent, meaningful, and useful. We highly recommend this training.” - S.C. Arts Alliance

This training is conducted by FMA Consultants. Here's who is eligible:
  • Only nonprofit grantees of the Donnelley Foundation and/or the S.C. Arts Commission.
  • Budget size < $750k
  • Attendance by the executive director, plus lead finance staff or appropriate board member is required for each session. Commitment must be made with application.

Find out more and apply by going here.

 

Tuning Up: Music, money, and more

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...


An exhibition for the birds. "If you're gonna do it, do it right," notable bird sculptor and South Carolina artist Grainger McKoy told the Wilmington Star News ahead of his new solo retrospective at the city's Cameron Art Museum. (You won't believe to what he was referring. - Ed.) Recovery in Flight runs through Feb. 17, 2019. Hours and admission vary. Florence Symphony goes platinum. The orchestra's 70th season begins tonight at the FMU Performing Arts Center. Barber, Beethoven, Brahms, Schubert, and (Johann) Strauss (II) are on the program. 7:30 p.m. $25-$42. Get jazzed for the weekend. Staying with the music in the Pee Dee theme, more than 20 regional musical artists from the Carolinas will perform in an eclectic collection of venues during the South Carolina Jazz Festival in Cheraw this coming weekend. (Yes, we are gazing ahead longingly.) Dizzy Gillespie's hometown invites you to enjoy a multitude of things, including a parade, 5K, golf tournament, and lots and lots of jazz. Oct. 19-21. Weekend passes for $50. A NASAA nod to the SCAC. And staying with the blowing of horns theme (RIP, Dizzy), the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, gave a shoutout to a new partnership program from the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, S.C. Arts Alliance, and the S.C. Arts Commission you might remember us mentioning this summer: A Stronger Bottom Line. If you don't remember, the first cohort of nonprofit arts organizations from around the state is receiving financial management training as a result of the partnership.

Tuning Up: A two-act play about arts funding and bookkeeping

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...


ACT ONE: Arts Funding Update

NEWSREADER (downstage, alone, follow spot only - no stage/house lighting) (serious)

We're getting late word of an arts funding update. (Beat. Touches earpiece as if listening to producer). YES! Yesterday, the South Carolina General Assembly passed a state budget on recommendation from the conference committee. The House voted 84-28 in favor, and the Senate 30-9. The adopted budget includes an additional $350,000 the House included in March and $100,000 the Senate added for arts education. The budget has gone to Governor McMaster to sign, veto, or use his line-item veto power to strike portions he doesn't like.

AUDIENCE, off-stage (gasps)

But his vetoes!

NEWSREADER (reassuring)

Arts leaders are cautiously optimistic that the funding will remain as passed. A decision by the governor is expected next week. He has five business days, excluding Sunday and the July Fourth holiday to respond. (Follow spot fades. Newsreader exits. A spontaneous candlelight vigil begins in audience.)

(Intermission)

ACT TWO: ICYMI: A Stronger Bottom Line.

GP MCLEER (in toga, enthusiastically - a soliloquy)

OYEZ! OYEZ! The S.C. Arts Alliance – with funding help provided by the SCAC and the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation – is announcing a new training program to help organizations and their leadership teams become even stronger in financial management. It is open to all SCAC organizational grantees with budgets between $200,000-$750,000. This program will provide participating organizations with tailored assistance to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of financial operations. And while it's valued at $3,500 per organization, thanks to the funding assistance mentioned above it is available (lean in, with emphasis) for just $200. All training takes place in Charleston. It is an exceptional resource for those who need it, and many do. Find out more now!

SC Arts Alliance to host Creative Pillars forums

“What are some of the pillars needed in a community for a creative professional to have a high quality of life?” That’s the question the South Carolina Arts Alliance is asking as it hosts Creative Pillars forums this summer in Greenville and Charleston. Forum dates and locations:

An additional forum is being planned in the Pee Dee area. All forums are free to attend and will run from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Beer and wine will be available for purchase. Advance registration is requested and is available on the Arts Alliance’s website, www.scartsalliance.net. The forums, which are open to any creative professional or those with an interest in a creative field, will include group activities meant to identify key amenities that help attract and retain creative professionals and targeted discussions to dive deeper into specific topics. The Arts Alliance is interested in hearing from every kind of creative professional, from the freelance graphic designer to the touring musician to the nonprofit fundraising professional. “We wanted to create a way to gather insight into areas other than pure arts and culture and how they play a role in the quality of life for a creative professional," said GP McLeer, SCAA’s executive director. "We know that a high value on arts and culture is important, but what about access to healthcare, public safety, recreation, or even trash pick up - where do these kinds of issues lie in the hierarchy for the creative professional? Whether you’re an architect, designer, actor, musician, nonprofit arts manager, or even a board member, this is an important discussion to have as people look for ways to effectively make a difference in their community." Creative Pillars is also serving as a pilot for a new statewide leadership development program, CreativeSC, being planned by the South Carolina Arts Alliance in partnership with the South Carolina Arts Commission, the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the University of South Carolina, and Together SC, with additional partners expected to join in the coming months. The comprehensive program will include networking, workshops/forums, and a selective leadership program. The Arts Alliance is targeting an early fall 2017 launch of CreativeSC. The series is supported by a grant by the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. About the South Carolina Arts Alliance The South Carolina Arts Alliance is the only statewide nonprofit dedicated to advancing the arts for all South Carolinians through advocacy, leadership development, and public awareness. The SCAA is housed at the Younts Center for Performing Arts in Fountain Inn, SC.

Gibbes Museum receives $150,000 grant for portrait miniatures installation

The Gibbes Museum of Art has received a grant award of $150,000 from the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation to support the installation of the museum’s miniature portrait collection in the renovated building. The Donnelley Foundation supports efforts to preserve and provide greater access to regionally significant collections. The Foundation's strategy is to support a range of specific projects including stabilization, cataloguing, preservation and restoration, digitization, enhanced opportunities for access by both the general public and scholars, and reinterpretation. Gibbes Museum Miniature“We are thrilled to receive this grant from the Donnelley Foundation for the installation and preservation of the miniature collection," said  Gibbes Museum of Art Executive Director Angela Mack. "The first-ever American miniatures were painted in Charleston, and today the Gibbes is home to one of the most prestigious American portrait miniature collections in the country." A major highlight of the newly renovated museum will be a dedicated gallery space featuring the nationally acclaimed collection of portrait miniatures. With over 600 miniature portraits, the Gibbes collection is the third largest in the United States and ranks in quality among those of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Yale University Art Gallery, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. New state-of-the-art display cases featuring accessible open storage drawers will allow visitors to experience up-close nearly 300 portrait miniatures by some of America’s most significant painters while simultaneously providing custom microclimates to preserve this sensitive collection. “Prior to the renovation, gallery conditions at the museum allowed for the exhibition of just 30-35 miniatures at a time—a fraction of the total collection. The new, dedicated miniature portrait gallery will introduce visitors to the refined colors and exquisite draftsmanship of these tiny treasures,” said Sara Arnold Gibbes, Museum of Art curator of collections. This unprecedented access to the collection will be accompanied by digitally enhanced interpretive materials that will offer visitors in-depth insight into painting techniques, materials, jeweled casework, conservation, and the social and cultural significance of these unique objects. Image: American eye miniature, unknown, ca. 1830s, watercolor on ivory; 1 inch diameter. Gift of Mr. James Sellers in memory of James Nelson Sellers. About the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation Gaylord Donnelley was a former chairman of the R.R. Donnelley Company, a Chicago-based publishing company founded by his grandfather in 1864. Gaylord and his wife, Dorothy, were avid lovers of the outdoors. They contributed to numerous land conservation efforts in the Chicago region and their adopted home in the Lowcountry of South Carolina. They were equally devoted to the arts and preserving collections. The Donnelley’s legacy lives on in the Foundation they established in 1952. Today, the Foundation supports land conservation, artistic vitality and collections of regional significance in the Chicago region and the Lowcountry of South Carolina. About the Gibbes Museum of Art Established as the Carolina Art Association in 1858, the Gibbes Museum of Art opened its doors to the public in 1905. In the fall of 2014, the Gibbes temporarily closed for major renovations and will reopen in the spring of 2016. The renovation project is designed to showcase the museum's collection, provide visitors with a history of American art from the early colonial era to the present, and engage the public with a center for education, artist studios, lecture and event space, a museum café, and store. During the renovation the museum will offer programs such as the Insider Art Series, Art With a Twist, Art of Healing, events including the Art of Design and annual Gibbes on the Street Party, and educational offerings such as Art to Go and Eye Spy Art. Highlights of the Gibbes permanent collection can be viewed on Google Art Project at www.googleartproject.com.